Expo 2020 Dubai: UAE launches international alliance to promote tolerance

The Global Tolerance Alliance was launched at a special event held at the Italy pavilion


Anjana Sankar

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Published: Tue 16 Nov 2021, 3:58 PM

Last updated: Tue 16 Nov 2021, 4:41 PM

The UAE has launched an international tolerance alliance - a unique initiative that aims to bring together religious leaders, governments and people to promote peaceful coexistence.

The Global Tolerance Alliance was launched by Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, the UAE’s Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence, at a special event held at the Italy pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai. It was held on the International Day of Tolerance, which is celebrated on November 16, and as part of the ongoing Tolerance and Inclusivity Week at the world fair.

Urging the world to join hands in rejecting all forms of hatred and intolerance, Sheikh Nahyan said in the year of 50th, when the country is welcoming the world to Expo, the UAE is ready to journey toward the next 50 by sharing its experience as a peaceful and prosperous nation where more than 200 nationalities live in harmony. He said the UAE is also ready to gain from others a wider understanding of the universal power of working together for the benefit of all of humanity.

Announcing that tolerance is “vital for human enrichment”, the minister said nations and organisations should show commitment to foster this virtue.

Sheikh Nahyan added that the National Festival of Tolerance, an annual festival organised by the Ministry of Tolerance and Coexistence to celebrate Tolerance Day, shows that the UAE is interested in cooperating with all countries and organisations to promote peaceful coexistence.

Today, the UAE is joining the entire world in its celebration of the International Day for Tolerance, as it was keen this year to keep pace with this occasion through the National Festival of Tolerance at Expo 2020 Dubai, in conjunction with the Tolerance and Inclusivity Week.

Miguel Angel Moratinos, high representative for the UN Alliance of Civilisations, who also attended the launch, said the increase in hate speech and xenophobia across the world makes the global alliance significant to wipe out all forms of extremism.

The launch was followed by an interfaith summit attended by spiritual leaders from all major faiths.

Prominent international leaders from the UN, the Vatican, and Al Azhar Al Sharif, along with leaders of different religions and prominent thinkers like Dr Muhammad Al Duwaini, Al Azhar Deputy of the Grand Imam, Bishop Paul Hinder, Vicar Apostolic for Southern Arabia, Swami Brahmavirahidas, religious leader for BAPS Hindu Mandir Abu Dhabi and Rabbi David Shlomo Rosen of the American Jewish Committee, among others, attended the summit.

Speakers agreed that the Global Tolerance Alliance can act as a platform that will give individuals and organisations the opportunity to make tolerance and peaceful coexistence an integral part of our lives.


The alliance will provide the family of nations an opportunity to establish a common platform to network and benefit from opportunities to learn, discover and to appreciate the important relationship between themselves and their world. It will also become a beehive of opportunity for shared thinking between nations on core values of tolerance and best practices in harmonious coexistence.

The international activities of the festival will continue until November 20, including the Global Tolerance Choir, the Global Youth Forum, the Tolerance and Inclusivity Conference for Women’s Rights and Empowerment, and Zayed Trail of Tolerance.

The UAE was ranked among the top 20 countries in the world in eight indexes of competitiveness related to tolerance and coexistence during 2020.

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