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UN Secretary-General invited to take part in religious forum in Astana this summer

Photo courtesy of the press service of the Senate of Kazakhstan's Parliament. Photo courtesy of the press service of the Senate of Kazakhstan's Parliament.

The Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon has been invited to take part in the coming Congress of World and Traditional Religions in Kazakhstan's capital Astana on June 10-11, 2015, Tengrinews reports citing the press service of the Senate, the upper chamber of Kazakhstan's Parliament.

During his visit to New York the Kazakh Senate Speaker Kassym-Zhomart Tokayev conveyed a message from Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbayev to Ban Ki-moon along with the President's invitation to take part in this summer’s forum in Astana. 

"I am convinced that your personal participation in the fifth Congress will be a clear signal for the international community that with coordinated actions and mutual support of religious leaders and politicians, the humanity will be able to effectively address the present day challenges, thus creating conditions for further progress," Tokayev said.

UN Secretary-General highly appreciated the Kazakh model of interethnic and inter-religious peace and harmony and stressed that the religious forum initiated by President Nursultan Nazarbayev was an important and effective dialog platform. According to Ban Ki-moon, the UN would support the Congress and cooperate with Kazakhstan in order to promote the goals and priorities of the forum around the world.

Tokayev also met with Deputy Secretary General of the UN Jan Eliasson, UNDP Administrator Helen Clark and other ranking officials of the UN.

As the head of the Secretariat of the Congress of World and Traditional Religions, Tokayev spoke about preparations for the upcoming forum. The main topic of this year’s forum will be responsibility of religious and political leaders to the humankind, influence of religions on young people, new trends and prospects in the interaction of religion and politics, and dialogue based on mutual respect and understanding between the leaders of world and traditional religions for the sake of peace, security and harmony.

Writing by Assel Satubaldina, editing by Tatyana Kuzmina

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