At Fez forum, UN chief calls for ‘global alliance for peace’ recognizing inclusion and richness of diversity

Mr. Guterres was speaking at the opening of the 9th Global Forum of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (AOC) taking place in Fez, Morocco.

“The forces of division and hatred find fertile ground in a landscape marked by injustice and conflict,” Mr. Guterres said. calling for the creation of a peace alliance recognizing “diversity as wealth” and investing in inclusion; and ensuring that “all of us – regardless of race, ancestry, nationality, origin, gender, religion or other status – can live lives of dignity and dignity.” ‘opportunities”.

“The Holy Quran teaches us that God created nations and tribes ‘so that we might know each other,'” said the UN Secretary-General, urging in this time of peril, to be inspired by the essence of these meanings and to “stand together as one”. human family – rich in diversity, equal in dignity and rights, united in solidarity”.

“Conflict of interest and ignorance”

Miguel Angel Moratinos, the high representative of UNAOC, recalled the thesis of the prestigious American political scientist Samuel Huntington, in his famous lecture on the “clash of civilizations”, but gave his point of view on the idea.

Mr. Moratinos asserted that “international conflicts cannot be the sole consequence of religion, culture or civilizations. It must be said bluntly: there is no clash of civilizations. There is a conflict of interest and a conflict of ignorance.

For the High Representative, the world is not facing a clash of civilisations, because the world of the 21st century is global and interconnected. Therefore, “we are one humanity facing multiple global challenges”.

“The recent crises affecting the international community have shown us that there are no borders that can stop viruses and wars, whether they occur in Europe or in any other corner of the world”, Moratinos said, further noting that “a war, the war in Ukraine has affected the peace and stability of the entire international order.

“Faced with the defense of tolerance, let us defend mutual respect. Faced with the defense of living together, let us defend living together: the “convivencia” [coexistence].

Indeed, he declared: “In the face of the defense of minorities, let us defend the equal rights of all citizens; In the face of exclusion and separatism, let us defend inclusion and fraternity; Faced with a dialogue of civilizations alone, let us engage in an Alliance of Civilizations, in a collective commitment.

“Politics speaks to citizens, religion speaks to their souls”

The Forum takes place against the backdrop of an extremely complex global context marked by a myriad of challenges, ranging from the rise of violent extremism, terrorism, xenophobia, hate speech to racism, discrimination and radicalism, among others.

More than 1,000 representatives from nearly 100 countries participated in the event, including the Advisor to the King of Morocco, André Azoulay, who delivered a powerful message of solidarity on behalf of the King, emphasizing the importance of find pathways to peace, unity and solidarity, and how Fes and wider Morocco have embodied these values.

“Morocco was built around a model of openness, harmony and synergy which saw the convergence of Arab-Islamic, Amazigh and Saharo-Hassanian confluences, and which was, at the same time, enriched by African, Andalusian, Hebrew and Mediterranean tributaries. ,” he said.

In his remarks at the Forum, Mr. Il explained that Morocco was committed to this avant-garde from the start and has remained there with constancy through: First, the promotion of openness as a pillar of the culture of peace ; second, to live religion as a vehicle for peace; third, to work for development – ​​in the broadest sense of the word – as an ingredient of peace.

“Politics speaks to citizens, religion speaks to their souls, dialogue speaks to their civilizations”, underlined Mr. Azoulay, adding that there is really no point in carrying out big projects “if we do not manage to go beyond this first link in the chain of “living together”, in the name of a single humanity, which puts people at the center of its concerns.

‘Adventure in other seas’ film plural + loan

On the sidelines of the Forum, the PLURAL+ youth video festivala joint initiative of UNAOC and the International Organization for Migration (IOM), with a network of more than 50 partner organizations around the world that support the creative endeavors of young people and distribute their videos worldwide, took place today.

This festival aims to encourage and empower young people to explore pressing social issues of migration, diversity, social inclusion and the prevention of xenophobia and to share their creative vision with the world.

“We are in our 14th year of working with our friend and partner UNAOC for the PLURAL+ Youth Video Festival,” said IOM Director General Antonio Vitorino.

“We share their commitment to promoting the benefits of safe migration, to improving the inclusion of migrants, and in particular young migrants, and to improving the misleading narratives that generate negative perceptions of migrants and which are worryingly , too often popularized in the contemporary media. “, he added, congratulating the young participants who received today.

After receiving his award for his short film Adventure in Other Seas, 12-year-old Ariel Pino from Spain spoke on behalf of his colleagues Diego, Paula and Danie, thanking the jury for their recognition.

Their film is about a fish that decided to migrate from its community to another, and the difficulties it faced along the way, but also the mistreatment inflicted by the fish in the new community.

Ariel pointed out that they learned a lot from making their film:

“First, to put ourselves in the place of people crossing the sea; and second, to contribute to the new community to which we are migrating. And above all, we learn that we will be good for our family.

Recognized PLURAL+ videos are chosen on the basis of their potential impact on issues of migration, diversity, social inclusion and prevention of xenophobia, as well as their artistic, innovative and creative content.

This year, PLURAL+ received 246 video submissions from 53 countries, of which 21 were selected recognized.

Fez Declaration

During its proceedings today, the 9th World Forum adopted the Declaration of Fez, which underlined, among other things, the importance of the central role of education, of women as mediators and peacemakers, fighting against discrimination and intolerance based on religion or beliefs rooted in human rights, sport as a vehicle for peace and inclusion, balancing migration narratives through programming, the role of religious leaders in promoting peace, coexistence and social harmony, reinvigorating multilateralism through the culture of peace and struggle; and countering hate speech online.

The Declaration also welcomed international initiatives, including those of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) aimed at promoting the safeguarding of cultural heritage in times of peace and in the event of armed conflict, and encouraged the members of the Friends group of the Alliance of Civilizations to condemn the illegal destruction of cultural heritage and religious sites.

She also highlighted the positive impact that migration can have on countries of origin, transit and destination, including through the promotion of cultural pluralism.

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