First Published: 2010-05-28

 
Forum of UN Alliance of Civilisations in Brazil
 

New study on cross-cultural ties in Mediterranean region gets global recognition at opening of UN Forum.

 

Middle East Online

André Azoulay





RIO DE JANEIRO - The forthcoming ‘Anna Lindh Report on Intercultural Trends’ is hailed by international leaders and experts as a pioneering model for providing a voice to people and communities in building regional cooperation.

International politicians, business leaders and civil society representatives have convened today in Brazil for the third global forum of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations, described by the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon as a “unique opportunity to launch new tools for tolerance, trust and change within a dynamic and constructive environment.”

As part of the Forum’s opening, a special event was organised on the forthcoming ‘Anna Lindh Report on Intercultural Trends’ which features the very first public opinion poll carried out with Gallup on cross-cultural trends and values across the 43 country ‘Union for the Mediterranean’, the far-reaching political agreement established between Europe, the Balkans, the Arab Mediterranean countries, Israel and Turkey.

Speaking at the opening, André Azoulay, President of the Anna Lindh Euro-Mediterranean Foundation and a co-founder of the Alliance of Civilizations, said:

“For the very first time, the international community has a scientific tool which not only measures the evolution of our mutual perceptions, but which set outs a roadmap in terms of the priority actions we must implement in order to significantly reverse those trends towards discrimination, xenophobia and ideological clashes.”

Dalia Mogahed, Executive Director of the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies, said:

“No-one has ever before explored the readiness of people across Europe, North Africa and the Middle East to a unified entity and a shared project around theMediterranean. The dialogue is usually monopolised by a vocal and tiny minority, and the Anna Lindh Report aims to hear from everyone in order to inject this dialogue with the voice of the people.”

While the official launch of the first Anna Lindh Report will be in September 2010, the study is already causing much interest among policy-makers, civil society leaders and the academic community.

Speaking at the session on behalf of the United Nations for Civilisations, Dr Thomas Uthup said: “Many reports have been produced which have no impact on policies, but this Report is different. What is apparent from the study the appetite that people have for real, positive intercultural relations, and the Anna Lindh Report can provide concrete orientation and ideas to the UN Alliance and all the institutions working for dialogue.”

 

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