Two of our respected advisors, Shrivatsa Goswami and Thomas Schellen, attended the UPF conference in Amman, Jordon last month. The conference facilitated dialogue for reconciliation in Syria and was attended by more than forty participants from nineteen different countries. The blend of religious and spiritual leaders with academics, geopolitical experts, diplomats and NGO activists created a rich foundation for religiously and historically grounded discussion. Shrivatsa Goswami reminded us of Mahatma Gandhi’s words, “there is no department of life which can be divorced from religion,” adding that keeping religious institutions out of the UN is “like trying to keep the electricity away from the appliances.” A declaration was composed and finalized as a result of the conference. It emphasized religious unity against all forms of extremism, and for immediate ceasefire, negotiations for hostage release, and a swift transition into a May 2014 election.
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For the text of the declaration, click here. A more extensive report will be published.