Tunisian faith communities sign coexistence pact – Eurasia Review

At a recent press conference in Tunis, Tunisia, religious communities in that country signed a jointly prepared “National Pact for Coexistence,” expressing their commitment to fostering a more peaceful society.

“This initiative is a powerful sign of solidarity,” said Mohamad Ben Moussa of the Baha’i Office of External Affairs. “The pact shows that we are united in our diversity and presents a refreshing vision of our society, a vision that recognizes a growing awareness of our essential unity.”

The press conference, which was also attended by a representative of the Ministry of Religious Affairs and civil society organizations, received extensive media coverage in Tunisia and elsewhere in the Arab region. The event was organized by the interfaith organization Attalaki, which means “a gathering”.

The agreement, co-authored by representatives of the Muslim, Christian, Jewish and Baha’i communities, sets out a set of shared values ​​for the promotion of social harmony and is the culmination of close collaboration between religious leaders and civil society in recent years.

One of the issues addressed by the pact is the vital role of women in transforming society.

Basing himself on the Bahá’í principle of the equality of women and men, Mr. Ben Moussa declares: “An important dimension of coexistence and a requirement for achieving a more peaceful society is the full participation of women in all the spheres of life. We cannot achieve peace if half the population of our society is not recognized as equal to the other half.

He adds, “This initiative brings this essential truth to the fore in our consciousness.

The agreement also stresses the need to end rhetoric that incites hatred and portrays segments of society as “the other”, and calls for improvements to the country’s educational curriculum so that young people can develop a more great appreciation of the diversity of Tunisian society. .

Interfaith initiative spokesman Imam al-Khatib Karim Shaniba said the pact aims to promote constructive societal models that accept all religions and is a response to voices that portray religions as being in conflict with each other. “Religious diversity enriches our society and provides a wide scope for cooperation and coexistence,” he said at the press conference.

Since the start of the pandemic, religious communities in Tunisia have been looking for opportunities to speak to their fellow citizens with one voice. In April 2020, the Baha’is of this country, as part of their continued participation in the discourse of coexistence, joined other religious communities and civil society organizations in delivering a message of hope and assurance to their society, calling on both science and religion to guide an effective response to the health crisis.

About Wesley V. Finley

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