«At the end of September 1914, I had been gravely injured and I was lying on the ground in misery like my companions. At daybreak, I saw the heavy silhouette of the curate moving around the area. When it came to my turn I said to him in all honesty, 'I am a stranger to your way of worship and I do not share your convinctions'. He replied: 'My child, if you have to appear before the Supreme Judge shortly, know that He will be a judge of love'. This scene is one that I will never forget.»

Rene Cassin Nobel Prize winner and the 4th President of the Honoray Committee of the AIDLR

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By Dr Liviu Olteanu, Secretary General of the International Association for the Defense of Religious Liberty

Dr. Liviu Olteanu, the AIDLR Secretary-General talked at the ‘Forum for Peace’ from Abu Dhabi, with MUHAMMAD SIRAJUDDIN DIN SYAMSUDDIN, one of the foremost Islamic scholars of Indonesia

Abu Dhabi (UAE), 9th December 2019

Professor Syamsuddin mentioned publicly in Abu Dhabi that instead of developing such a “phobia-like” approach, nations around the world should develop a “genuine tolerance” culture. We discussed the problems that may exist between groups, and the respect, the dialogue and the dignified means being considered to overcome any problems and differences based on religion or belief. In summary: we don’t need to ask religions and people to build an ecumenism based upon the doctrines and religious truths of one religion or another, nor is it necessary to work together on the defense of religions per se, instead we could cooperate and build an ‘ecumenism’ of religious liberty, fostering religious freedom and the principle of religious liberty for all people. The Forum for Peace aimed to elevate religious freedom, cooperation and tolerance from each country’s standard of ‘possibilities to necessary’ ethical commitments and legal obligations, especially concerning the protection of religious minorities and places of worship, attacks on the latter having threatened the freedom of religion in many parts of the world.

Liviu Olteanu, AIDLR Secretary-General with Muhammad Sirajuddin din Syamsuddin