Western European Regional Youth Preparatory Meeting:
Confronting violence and advancing shared security
July 10th-13th, 2006
Being representatives of Bahá’í, Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, Zoroastrian and other related youth organisations and active participants in interfaith dialogue, having discussed issues of violence and shared security, we would like to conclude the Western European Interfaith Youth Meeting hosted by the Religions for Peace (WCRP) in Geneva, Switzerland, in July 2006, by declaring the following:
We believe that every human being, regardless of faith, gender or ethnicity, has the right to live in peace, harmony and with dignity in all spheres of life. This encompasses freedom from all forms of violence prevalent in Western Europe including amongst others:
We are increasingly concerned by the prevailing lack of mutual respect and understanding which is contributing to the aforementioned forms of violence. This is reinforced by continued misinformation, incorrect or deficient knowledge and claims of superiority. In this respect we highlight the role played by individuals and institutions, such as certain media and political parties in explicitly and implicitly fuelling prejudice and stereotypes, thus encouraging violence and the violation of Human Rights.
We, the youth of different faith groups, are determined to live together in peace and mutual appreciation. We are united in the belief that it is our duty to play a crucial role in overcoming these issues and striving for justice. This ideal will only be achieved through interfaith cooperation, which will be facilitated by the establishment of the European Interfaith Youth Network (EIYN).
We will work with a multidimensional approach incorporating knowledge and information exchange, education and the sharing of experiences. Through being pro-active rather than reactive we hope to achieve our goal of living together in peace and mutual appreciation.
Our main lines of action include, but are not limited to the following:
Initiate and promote an annual European Youth Interfaith Day.
Establish and develop an interactive website with discussion forums.
Contribute to the WCRP European Youth Assembly.
Raise the profile of EIYN to increase membership and cooperation.
May we, the youth of an increasingly diverse and multicultural Europe, through the development of this interfaith network, achieve our goals and play an active role in the progression towards world peace.
‘Be the change you want to see…..’