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Foreign Minister of Pakistan Bilawal Bhutto Zardari met the High Representative for the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC), Mr. Miguel Moratinos, on the margins of the 77th UNGA Session in New York.

They discussed the work of the UNAOC and avenues for collaboration, particularly in strengthening inter-religious dialogue, combating Islamophobia as well as intolerance based on religion or belief. They stressed the need for achieving harmony among diverse cultures and societies.

The Foreign Minister emphasized that Islamophobia is a reality that is visible in a number of western countries but its most virulent manifestation is in India. He called upon UNAOC to step up its efforts to halt and reverse Islamophobia, bigotry and discrimination based on religion and belief.

While encouraging interfaith and intercultural dialogue and exchange of ideas at the local, national and international levels, the High Representative reiterated the readiness of UNAOC to support all efforts that promote continued dialogue and foster mutual respect and understanding, including on ways to combat Islamophobia.

Created in 2005, one of the core objectives of UNAOC has been to advance mutual respect for all cultures, traditions and religious beliefs. It serves as a platform for bridging differences and reducing friction between civilizations.

24 September 2022

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