UN Alliance of Civilisations
On February 3, 2011, the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) participated in a United Nations interfaith breakfast, organized by the Committee of Religious NGOs at the United Nations, in partnership with the UN Department of Public Information at the Salvation Army International in New York City.
The breakfast celebrated the first World Interfaith Harmony Week, (February 1-7), the idea of which was proposed in 2010 by HM King Abdullah II of Jordan, and is based on the UN General Assembly Resolution A/RES/65/5. UNAOC High Representative President Sampaio had earlier welcomed the resolution and encouraged the participation of UNAOC partners in observing the week.
Participants at the breakfast were welcomed by Ms. Monica Willard, President of the Committee of Religious NGOs. More than a hundred people were present at the breakfast to symbolize their support for the promotion of interfaith harmony. Among the attendees were representatives of religious groups as well as interfaith groups, and personnel from UN Missions and intergovernmental organizations. \
Speaking at the breakfast, UNAOC Director Marc Scheuer noted that the Week “is an opportunity to focus global attention on the important role of religious leaders, interfaith movements and individuals around the world to promote mutual respect and understanding between followers of different faiths and beliefs.”
Other speakers at the breakfast included the UN Under-Secretary-General for Communications and Public Information, Mr. Kiyotaka Akasaka; Permanent Representative of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan to the United Nations, HRH Prince Zeid Ra’ad Zeid Al Hussein; the representative of the Civil Society Partnerships Office of UNICEF, Mr. Stephen Hanmer; and Senior Culture Adviser, UNFPA, Dr. Azza Karam.