Tolerance in the UAE takes Limelight at the 25th Annual International Law and Religious Symposium in Brigham Young University Utah … reports Asian Lite News.
Over 130 delegates from 45 countries have met together in this annual symposium, discussing ideals of religious freedom and exploring ways of implementing these principles. The 2018 conference was held from October 7 to 9, at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. The conference celebrates its 25 year anniversary as well as the 70th year of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted by the UN General Assembly in 1948.
Surender Singh Kandhari, Chairman of Gurudwara Guru Nanak Darbar Dubai UAE, was among over 80 well reputed speakers coming from Europe, Americas, China, Canada, the Middle East, Brazil, Australia, India, Ethiopia, Ukraine, Philippines, Singapore, Indonesia, South Africa, Russia, Japan, South Korea and many others. The panel discussions gave opportunity to share ideas, create networks, and contribute publications advocating human dignity and freedom of religion. Topics of discussion included history and implementation of the UDHR, human dignity as a central idea of human rights, and the protection of international religious freedom and human dignity by various institutions, among others.
Chaired by Grant Underwood, Professor of Religious Education and Richard L. Evans Chair of Religious Outreach, Brigham Young University, Surender Kandhari elaborated on Protecting Human Dignity and Religious Freedom through Interfaith Cooperation. Sharing the stage with him was Cisse Djiguiba, Imam of the Mosque of Plateau from Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire.
“UAE exemplifies progressive peace and is an excellent model of religious pluralism to the world. The country along with the community worked tirelessly and sincerely in sustaining peace and is an outstanding role model for other countries to emulate. The UAE has been an open country widely embraced by locals, residents and visitors. This is evident among the 200 nationalities living in mutual amiability. With strong adherence to the Emirati values and traditions and at the same time adept with today’s social and technological changes. The country has been welcoming in cultivating an inter-cultural convening place for work or leisure wherein individuality is regarded and inclusivism is at the same time encouraged, respecting the otherness of others,” said Surender Kandhari.
As Chairman of Gurudwara Guru Nanak Darbar Dubai, they serve the Sikhs and other communities in the UAE. The temple however is not only a place for worship but is also used for community service. Gurudwara welcome everyone regardless of religion or nationality serving free meal every day ranging from 1,500 on weekdays, 15,000 on weekends, and 50,000 on holidays. Gurudwara Guru Nanak Darbar Dubai has been partners with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in doing Interfaith Service Projects. Previous projects were distribution of hygiene kits and food packs last November 2015 and 2017 and distribution of blankets last November 2016. All these humanitarian projects benefited blue collared workers and were supported by the Ministry of Tolerance as part of the Tolerance Day celebrations in the country.