Nobel Laureate Betty Williams started her speech to a peace forum at the U.N. headquarters Thursday with perhaps the last thing the audience would expect her to say.
Today's youth are hardly passive consumers of content – they create it, endlessly updating via social media and spreading information faster than one can say “go".
The fifth global forum of the United Nations Alliance of Civilisations (UNAOC), founded to promote intercultural understanding and dialogue to bring civilisations closer, came to a close Thursday after two days of talks, at which world leaders restated their commitment to the Alliance’s ideals and pledged to build on the foundations it had laid to expand its work.
Amid calls from world leaders for media diversity and plurality to be strengthened to combat a rising tide of extremism and intolerance, media experts have warned that change should not be expected overnight and that governments and states have a crucial role to play in the process.
A UN summit designed to promote tolerance, plurality and global inclusiveness of civilisations has opened with dire warnings of the threat of religious and ethnic intolerance – at the same time as many states that have ostensibly signed up to the UN’s ideals continue to enforce laws and practices restricting religious freedom, and implicitly marginalising communities.
Amidst the rising tide of racial and religious intolerance worldwide - including xenophobia, anti-Semitism and Islamophobia - the U.N. Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) will meet in the Austrian capital of Vienna later this week to strengthen cross-cultural relations in a world it describes as "alarmingly out of balance".
Twelve young leaders from North Africa and the Middle East are arriving in New York this week with the aim of creating new alliances and gaining knowledge and understanding of the United States and Europe.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon last week designated Nassir Abdulaziz al-Nasser, President of the 66th
session of the United Nations General Assembly, as High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations, replacing Jorge Sampaio.