The 2013 exchange on the religious dimension of intercultural dialogue titled “Freedom of religion in today’s world: challenges and guarantees wrapped up in Yerevan today.
No final document was adopted at the end of the meting. Instead, the participants reached conclusions targeted at one main goal – to contribute to the creation of necessary bases for mutual trust, tolerance, inter-religious and inter-church dialogue.
Summing up the results of the two-day meeting, Secretary General of the European Council of Religious Leaders Stein Villumstad stressed that the rules and laws adopted by Council of Europe member states are actually enough to realize the rights existing in the sphere. Whether they are applied or not is a different question, he said.
There are a number of examples of inter-religious tolerance in different countries, which should be investigated, participants of the forum concluded. They also stressed that the illegalities done under the cover of religion should be viewed as violations of law and be punished.
Touching upon the discrimination against religious minorities, the participants said they exist in all countries, especially under the conditions of increased level of mobility in the world. Currently there are contacts between Christians and Muslims in Europe, but there are also cases of intolerance.
Another conclusion reached at the conference referred to political parties. The forum stressed that the parties should not use the religious minorities for their political interests.