ASIA/MYANMAR - Religious leaders work for peace

Friday, 11 October 2013

Yangon (Agenzia Fides) - A strong appeal and a shared commitment "to work together in order to build security and peace in Myanmar" was launched by the Burmese religious leaders of different faiths, at the conclusion of a conference organized in recent days in Yangon by the Institute for Global Engagement and by the Sitagu International Buddhist Academy (Siba). In the conclusive declaration of the meeting - sent to Fides Agency - the main Buddhist, Hindu, Christian, Muslim leaders present in Myanmar, including the Archbishop of Yangon, Mgr. Charles Maung Bo, deepened and enhanced interfaith understanding in a multi-ethnic and multi-religious society. The conference - which saw the participation of 226 among government officials, academics, and religious leaders from different parts of the world, and over 200 observers - comes at a key moment for the future of Mynamar: the country is projected towards renewal and openness, also in terms of human rights, but torn by ethnic and religious conflicts that inflame different areas of the country.
"We recognize the urgent need for frequent dialogue among the leaders of different faiths in a spirit of mutual respect", notes the statement sent to Fides by Mgr. Bo, recognizing that "peace and security are two essential factors". The religious leaders commit themselves "to finding common ground, by adopting the concept of unity in diversity" and to "building bridges of cooperation". Among the causes of the ongoing conflicts in Myanmar is poverty". In conclusion, the appeal recognizes a decisive role regarding "moral education" based on shared values and "education as the basis for national development". (PA) (Agenzia Fides 11/10/2013)