Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 33 n° 335

Posts Tagged ‘dialogue’

Eastern Mediterranean tensions: MEPs call for urgent de-escalation and dialogue

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 11 settembre 2020

Members of the Foreign Affairs Committee say Turkey must end its illegal gas exploration activities in the Eastern Mediterranean.In a debate with Miltiadis Varvitsiotis, Alternate Minister of Foreign Affairs for European affairs of Greece, and Turkish Foreign Affairs Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu on Thursday, MEPs in the Foreign Affairs Committee voiced their serious concern over the alarming military build-up in the Eastern Mediterranean by NATO members Greece and Turkey, following the latter’s continuous gas drilling and exploration operations in the exclusive economic zones of Greece and Cyprus.
They expressed their full solidarity with EU members Greece and Cyprus and firmly called on Turkey to stop its controversial energy activities, which the EU considers illegal, as well as its constant provocations and violations of international law and the maritime zones of its neighbors.“Cannot accept military pressure or threats”A de-escalation of tensions is now urgently needed, and the European Union must be united on this issue, MEPs said. They also stressed the importance of both sides sitting down at the negotiating table to resolve the ongoing disputes through dialogue in good faith.Mr Varvitsiotis said that his country does not want to solve any problems through military action, but also explained that no dialogue can take place against the backdrop of “military pressure and threats”. He also condemned the Turkish unlawful presence and actions in the area, which he said undermines the security situation in the whole region as well as the EU’s direct interests.Members also quizzed Mr Varvitsiotis on a range of issues and the way forward in EU-Turkey relations, including on the possibility and efficiency of new EU sanctions against the country, which will be discussed by EU heads of state and government at the next EU summit in Brussels on 24 and 25 September. Others raised the prospect of imposing an EU arms embargo on Turkey, in order to respond to its increasing provocations.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu stressed in his intervention that the Turkish side is ready for dialogue, while criticising the Greek government for having rejected several proposals for “unconditional talks” to solve the disputes, including from NATO and EU Foreign Policy Chief Josep Borrell.He also expressed his dismay over what Turkey considers to be the “maximalist positions” of Greece and Cyprus, with regard to the establishment and perception of territorial waters and subsequent economic rights, and criticised the Greek government of having signed maritime deals with neighbouring Mediterranean countries in violation of Turkey’s continental shelves.Mr Çavuşoğlu further accused the EU of “blindly” taking the sides of Greece and Cyprus, despite the EU having “no competence” to settle maritime affairs. MEPs questioned the minister on several subjects, including what concrete steps can be taken to de-escalate the current tensions, on the relations with Cyprus and if the country is ready to settle the maritime disputes at international courts.

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Progetto “Sustainable Civil Society Dialogue for Sustainable Development”

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 12 giugno 2019

Roma Giovedì 20 giugno 2019 (ore 10,30- Spazio Europa) Via IV Novembre 149. conferenza di lancio del progetto “Sustainable Civil Society Dialogue For Sustainable Development”. Sustainable Civil Society Dialogue for Sustainable Development è un progetto co-finanziato dall’Unione Europea (UE) e dalla Repubblica di Turchia nell’ambito del programma Civil Society Dialogue – V, che supporta iniziative dedicate allo scambio di conoscenza ed esperienze su temi di interesse comuni alla società civile turca e UE. Il progetto è iniziato il 1 aprile 2019 e ha una durata di 15 mesi. Le organizzazioni partner sono Kyoto Club, Roma (Coordinamento) e Çevreci Enerji Derneği (Environmental Energy Association), Smirne. I partner associati sono la Municipalità di Karşıyaka, in Turchia e il Comune di Bologna, con l’Ufficio di sostenibilità ambientale.Obiettivo è migliorare e sostenere un dialogo efficace con la società civile attraverso la cooperazione a lungo termine tra Turchia e Italia nel settore ambientale,
la promozione di iniziative di sensibilizzazione sull’importanza e i benefici dello sviluppo sostenibile e la diffusione di buone pratiche rispettose del clima e dell’ambiente.Attraverso conferenze, incontri, visite di studio e attività di sensibilizzazione alla sostenibilità, saranno coinvolte le principali organizzazioni della società civile e gli Enti locali delle aree metropolitane di Smirne, Roma, Bologna e Bruxelles.

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Last call for Nantes cruise dialogue on 25 September!

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 21 settembre 2018

Are you interested in, working at or caring about the cruise sector in the Atlantic, North Sea and Arctic? Then join to the Regional Cruise Dialogue on 25 September in Nantes!
Stakeholders from ports, cruise operators, local SMEs, catering sector and more will engage in a common effort to build a sustainable and competitive sector.Europe accounts for about one third of global cruise shipping, and the sector is booming. It is the biggest maritime sector in terms of gross value added and employment, with capacity set to double over the coming years.
A sustainable business requires however a strong coordination with local stakeholders at port towns. For this, the European Commission has set up Regional Dialogues, to bring all parties involved in coastal tourism closer together, share views and find common solutions.This edition, dedicated especially to the Atlantic, North Sea and Arctic, is the third in a series of regional dialogues, and follows the Mediterranean (Olbia, 2015) and the Baltic (Copenhagen, 2016).
There are still a few days to register and come to Nantes on 25 September. We encourage everyone involved in the sector to sign up. Because we consider it important to have as many different views as possible at the table. Because we care about a sustainable, competitive coastal tourism sector.

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Join a weekend for Europe

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 4 agosto 2018

The Jesuit European Social Center (JESC) together with the group “Passion for Europe” are proposing a two days session to share a christian vision of Europe’s current situation and main challenges, and open a dialogue on possible changes of mindset to rediscover the European common good.This two days session will take place in September 21-23 in the Spiritual Centre “La Pairelle”, close to Namur. The debates will be led by experts, including members of the EU institutions and religious organizations, and fostered by participants’ intervention. In the discussion panels, three main areas that represent a challenge for the present and future of the European Union will be covered: migration flows, integral ecology and cultural challenges within the EU.The program will begin on Friday 21/09 at 1:30 pm and will end on Sunday 23/09 at 2:00 pm. Should you have any further questions, please contact Martin Maier, JESC Secretary for European Affairs. (font: The Jesuit European Social Center)

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International ocean governance: dialogue with our partners intensifies

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 2 ottobre 2015

maritime“Drivers for Blue growth in the Baltic Sea Region” conference, Copenhagen, 6 October 2015. European Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, Karmenu Vella, has intensified dialogue with international maritime stakeholders on how to improve ocean governance globally. To take advantage of the opportunities offered by this global outreach, the Ocean governance consultation period ends on 15th of October.Following his speech earlier this month at the GLACIER Conference (Global Leadership in the Arctic: Cooperation, Innovation, Engagement and Resilience), organised by the US State Department in Anchorage, Alaska, Commissioner Vella this week held intensive meetings in Washington, D.C., with the US administration, NGOs and stakeholders. His listening tour on ocean governance will continue in the coming weeks with stops in Chile (Our Oceans Conference, Viña del Mar), Spain, and China.
Besides putting ocean governance onto the international agenda, these meetings are also an opportunity to stress the EU’s commitment to sustainable development and its efforts to protect and preserve marine ecosystems for current and future generations. For instance, the EU is developing a Blue Growth Strategy that allows maritime activities to thrive while maintaining high standards on environmental protection.In this context, Mr Vella has repeatedly welcomed the UN’s new 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda and goals, which were adopted on 25 September. Goal 14 specifically calls on the international community to conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development. (Photo: maritime)

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Dialogue social européen : 30 ans d’expérience et de progrès, quel avenir?

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 29 gennaio 2015

dialogue_socialDans ce moment de crise qui n’en finit pas et dans lequel l’Europe sociale semble cruellement manquer, la question de la place et le rôle des acteurs sociaux se pose avec acuité tant au niveau national qu’au niveau européen.Si les relations professionnelles nationales se sont construites depuis plus de 100 ans de manière singulière dans chacun de nos pays, dans des contextes historiques, au travers des luttes et sous des formes différentes, le dialogue social européen lui, a vu le jour il y a juste trente ans, de manière volontaire, avec l’ambition d’être partie prenante de la construction européenne. À l’occasion du 30ème anniversaire des réunions de Val Duchesse, l’Institut Jacques Delors publie ce Policy paper de Jean Lapeyre qui présente la naissance (partie 1), l’évolution (partie 2) et les perspectives d’avenir du dialogue social européen (partie 3).Les six premières années du dialogue social européen ont permis d’établir les bases d’un espace contractuel et d’un engagement des partenaires sociaux dans la gouvernance de l’UE. Les quatorze années suivantes ont vu la conclusion des premiers accords européens interprofessionnels et sectoriels et la diversification du dialogue social au niveau des entreprises exerçant dans l’espace européen. Ces dix dernières années ont été plus difficiles et le dialogue social européen semble marquer le pas sous le coup d’un élargissement qui doit être digéré, d’une crise qui n’en finit pas, d’un affaiblissement de la négociation collective ou encore d’une Commission européenne affaiblie et réticente – sous la pression des États membres – à toute initiative sociale. Faut-il désespérer ou au contraire agir pour une relance du dialogue social et de la qualité de ses résultats ? Des pistes existent, qui concernent en premier lieu les partenaires sociaux mais aussi la Commission européenne. Elles sont évoquées dans la dernière partie de ce Policy paper : consolidation des résultats du dialogue social ; structuration plus forte et plus autonome du dialogue social ; une “zone euro” du dialogue social ; l’articulation de l’espace européen et de l’espace mondial ; complémentarité entre dialogue social et dialogue civil.

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COMECE-CEC Dialogue Seminar on Human trafficking

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 28 novembre 2014

human traffickingAn estimated 800,000 women, men, and children are victims of human trafficking within the EU today. Up to 60% of the victims originate from EU states. The EU and its member states urgently need to implement the legal framework already in place and to intensify cooperation with civil society and church organisations that work with victims at the grassroots level. This was one of the main messages of the Dialogue Seminar organised by COMECE and the Church and Society Commission of CEC in cooperation with CCME in dialogue with the EU Commission on 27 November.Human trafficking is a modern form of slavery, a criminal activity, and a lucrative global enterprise. An estimated 16% of victims are children, and they can be sold for up to 40.000 EUR . In addition to sexual exploitation, forced labour and domestic workers, human trafficking is also taking new forms such as for reproductive purposes, including surrogacy and illegal adoption. Dialogue participants repeatedly called for more reliable and comprehensive data, including accurate estimated figures to better inform policy and faith-based responses. They also brought extensive advocacy and policy experience to the dialogue, and heard direct accounts about human trafficking in Europe.Victims of human trafficking need more protection and assistance through the broader implementation of existing legislation. Victims of human trafficking should not be punished for acts committed while being trafficked. Ongoing financial support of civil society and church organisations will contribute to achieving these aims.In the legal field, the EU has already adopted a series of directives and instruments. However, these instruments need updating to cover new forms of trafficking and to assure further implementation at the national level.In response to the complexity and seriousness of these issues, COMECE and CEC/CCME intend to provide the EU Commission a compilation of their proposals and recommendations to fight human trafficking in the coming weeks.
COMECE is the Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Community. It is made up of Bishops delegated by the 27 Catholic Bishops’ Conferences of the European Union and it has a permanent Secretariat in Brussels.

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Illegal fisheries: green cards for five countries, but red card for Sri Lanka

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 15 ottobre 2014

illegal fishing activitiesIn its fight against illegal fishing activities worldwide, the European Commission has today proposed to ban imports of fisheries products from Sri Lanka to tackle the commercial benefits stemming from illegal fishing. The move comes after four years of intense dialogue with the country after which it could not demonstrate that it sufficiently addressed illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. In contrast, the Commission today confirmed that Belize, Fiji, Panama, Togo and Vanuatu, which had received warnings at the same time as Sri Lanka, have successfully taken measures to tackle illegal fishing. Consequently, the Commission proposes to lift the trade measures imposed in March this year against Belize.
European Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, Maria Damanaki, said: “Our policy of resolute cooperation is yielding results. Five countries receive today our appreciation for getting serious on illegal fishing. Unfortunately, I cannot say the same for Sri Lanka. I hope that the message we are sending today will be a wake-up call for this country.”
According to the Commission’s assessment, Sri Lanka has not sufficiently addressed the shortcomings in its fisheries control system identified in November 2012. The main weaknesses include shortcomings in the implementation of control measures, a lack of deterrent sanctions for the high seas fleet, as well as lacking compliance with international and regional fisheries rules.As a result, the Commission tables a ban on fisheries products caught by Sri Lankan vessels being imported into the EU. In order to avoid disrupting ongoing commercial contracts, the full trade measures will only come into force in mid-January 2015, which is three months after the decision is published in the EU’s Official Journal.
The Commission has today also proposed to remove Belize from the list of non-cooperating third countries in the fight against illegal fishing and to end the trade measures imposed against the country in March 2014. Belize has demonstrated its commitment to reforming its legal framework and adopting a new set of rules for inspection, control and monitoring of vessel. The Council will take a decision in this respect.In a similar vein, the Commission also announced the termination of steps against Belize, Fiji, Panama, Togo and Vanuatu who all received a formal warning in November 2012. The countries have taken concrete measures in addressing established shortcomings and shown commitment to complete structural reforms in order to address illegal fishing.The Commission has prolonged the cooperation with Korea, Curacao and Ghana until January 2015. Despite some progress achieved in these countries, which have received formal warnings in November 2013, more time is needed in these countries to make changes. Commissioner Damanaki said: “The improvements Belize made as regards its fisheries control system since its ‘red card’ show that the EU’s fight against illegal fishing works. The formalised cooperation with the EU has helped the country to move towards sustainable fisheries. The same goes for Fiji, Panama, Togo and Vanuatu. These countries’ positive attitude should serve as a template to other countries in similar situations.”

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The importance of staying quiet

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 7 ottobre 2014

Yallay GalleryHong Kong Bringing together a selection of ten artists, The importance of staying quiet explores the use of formal and informal elements that distil the image or form down to its basics. Works from the presentation span over five decades – 1950s to date – featuring prominent modern to significant contemporary practitioners from Pakistan and its diaspora. The selection is not intended to represent the artists’ signature practice but instead looks at specific works produced by them that contribute towards this dialogue. The importance of staying quiet is presented by Yallay Gallery.
Yallay Gallery specialises in contemporary art from Asia (China and South East Asia) and the Middle East. It is among the first galleries in Hong Kong to showcase art from contemporary art scenes all three regions. Founded in January 2013 and situated in the vibrant Wong Chuk Hang district, the programme reflects the renaissance of ancient links between East Asia and the Middle East. The annual curatorially led exhibition series showcases creative talents that are emerging from the area.
Based in Hong Kong since 1993, founder of Yallay Gallery Jean-Marc Decrop has been involved with the first generation of Chinese contemporary artists from 1997. On his vision for the gallery programme he stated that, ‘I strongly believe that China, Indonesia and the Middle East are where new talents are today developing new paradigms. At Yallay Gallery the vision is to showcase the art and artists of these regions, away from the dominating North Atlantic sphere.’

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2nd Meeting of Bishops’ Conference delegates

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 28 Maggio 2011

Turin, Italy, 31 May – 2 June 2011 for relations with Muslims in Europe. What is the state of dialogue between Catholics and Muslims in Europe today? How is Islam perceived in the different European countries? Is there not the risk that the images of violence from beyond the Mediterranean which reach us periodically increase in Europeans a sense of fear and intolerance towards Islam? How can a sound and clear dialogue with the various Muslim communities, of old and recent foundation, be promoted? And how does the Catholic Church and the Muslim communities relate to the States and European institutions in building a culture of peaceful coexistence in mutual respect for cultural and religious differences? To these and other questions the delegates from Europe’s Bishops’ Conferences responsible for relations with Muslims, with contributions from some experts, will try to respond in the course of their three-day meeting in Turin. The programme for the meeting wil be enriched by the testimony, at the start of the meeting, by Cardinal Jean Louis Tauran, President of the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue, who will focus on the work of the Catholic-Muslim Forum, and, in the following days, by the testimony of the Archbishop of Tunis, Mgr Maroun Lahham. There will be a news conference on 31 May at 1600 at the Casa di Spiritualità Nostra Signora del Cenacolo, Piazza Guido Gozzano, 4 – 10132 Turin. Speaking at the news conference will be:
the Archbishop of Tunis, Mgr Maroun Lahham, on relations between Muslims and Christians in the Middle East and North Africa;
the CCEE General Secretary, Mgr Duarte da Cunha, on the goals of the meeting;
the secretary of the Commission for Ecumenism and Inter-religious Dialogue of the Piemonte-Valle d’Aosta Regional Bishops’ Conference, Don Andrea Pacini, on the main challenges of dialogue with Islam in Europe.
Journalists present at the news conference will subsequently be able to attend the introductory session of the meeting, during which there will be welcome addresses from the Archbishop of Turin, Mgr Cesare Nosiglia; from the episcopal delegate for ecumenism and inter-religious dialogue from the Piemonte-Valle d’Aosta Regional Bishops’ Conference, Mgr Piergiorgio Debernardi, Bishop of Pinerolo; and an address from the CCEE Vice-president, Cardinal Jean-Pierre Ricard, Archbishop of Bordeaux

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“Dialogue between Islam and Christianity

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 6 novembre 2010

There are eighty participants and guests including high-ranking Muslim and Christian leaders as well as renowned interfaith scholars representing Islamic and Christian organisations. During this consultation issues of common concern will be identified and addressed with the hope of being able to provide guidance for cooperation between Muslims and Christians. The Consultation will address three key issues in the present context of Muslim-Christian relations: •  Beyond Majority and Minority • From Conflict to Compassionate Justice: Building ecologies of peace  • Learning to Overcome; formulating educational tools to resolve issues
The opening keynote addresses were given by His Royal Highness Prince Ghazi Bin Muhammad bin Talal, personal envoy and special advisor to His Majesty King Abdullah II of Jordan and by Archbishop Anders Wejryd of the Church of Sweden. CEC Presidium member Rev. Thomas Wipf, President of the Swiss Protestant Churches and the Swiss Council of Religions is also attending the Consultation in that capacity. Rev. Wipf indicated in his welcome speech that in parallel with this Consultation a “Week of Religions” is taking place, for the fourth time, throughout Switzerland “which also serves to boost mutual trust between Christians and Muslims.”  CEC is also represented at this Consultation by the Rev. Dr Prof. Viorel Ionita, Interim General Secretary.

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Synod for Middle East

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 12 ottobre 2010

Caritas says the upcoming Synod for the Middle East can help divided communities come together for the region’s poorest people. The Synod will take place in Rome from 10 to 24 October. It is the first synod dedicated specifically to the Middle East.  Church leaders will discuss problems ranging from the Israeli-Palestinian stand-off and conflict in Iraq, to radical Islamism, the economic crisis and the divisions among the region’s many Christian churches.  Caritas will be represented at the Synod by Joseph Farah, President of Caritas MONA (Middle East and North Africa) as well as Naguib Khouzam of Caritas Egypt, and Huda Musher of Caritas Jordan.  Mr. Farah said, “The Middle East is a pluralistic region. This pluralism can even be found within the Catholic Church. There are Maronites, Syriacs, Greek, Armenian and Latin Catholics, Chaldeans and so on, and all those Churches have their own hierarchies and social organisations such as hospitals and schools.  Under the theme “The Catholic Church in the Middle East: Communion and Witness”, the Synod will aim to strengthen cooperation between the different Catholic communities, often dispersed and in the minority. Caritas carries out humanitarian and development programmes in the Middle East, in particular in the fields of health and education, and stands up for peace and interreligious dialogue.

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Francesco De Grandi e Luo Xiaodong: Dialogue

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 6 aprile 2010

Palermo fino al 29/5/2010 Via Siracusa 9, Galleria dell’Arco La Galleria dell’Arco di Palermo presentare l’inizio di un nuovo cilclo di esposizioni intitolato -Dialogues-: una serie di doppie personali che si pone l’obiettivo di creare una piattaforma di dialogo tra gli artisti rappresentati dalle due sedi della galleria, Palermo e Shanghai. Una occasione concreta di interazione e di scambio tra il bagaglio e le esperienze di artisti che appartengono a due sistemi dell’arte differenti. Inaugurano il progetto Francesco De Grandi – artista tra i piu’ rappresentativi nel panorama della pittura figurativa italiana – e Luo Xiaodong – giovane e già affermato protagonista della scena contemporanea cinese, che espone per la prima volta in Italia. Le opere di Luo Xiaodong in mostra saranno realizzate durante il suo soggiorno nel capoluogo siciliano: tele di differenti formati che, pur nel rispetto della cifra stilistica che caratterizza la sua poetica, assorbono e risentono delle suggestioni dell’esperienza palermitana. Francesco De Grandi presenta i suoi lavori piu’ recenti: olii su tela – di grandi e piccole dimensioni – e disegni, in cui permane la dimensione vionaria che lo contrattistingue. In contemporanea alla mostra di Palermo, nell’ambito del ciclo di residenze d’artista organizzato dalla sede della Galleria dell’Arco di Shanghai, s’inaugura ad aprile una personale dello stesso De Grandi, che presenta per la prima volta in Asia il suo lavoro.
Francesco De Grandi  Nato a Palermo nel 1968, vive e lavora tra Palermo e Milano. Luo Xiaodong Nato nel 1979 Xianyang, provincia di Shanxi (China), attualmente vive e lavora a Shanghai. (dialogue)

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First step in a study project on Church Unity

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 27 febbraio 2010

A study project on Church unity was launched at a meeting hosted in Geneva by the Churches in Dialogue Commission (CiD) of the Conference of European Churches (CEC) on 22 February 2010. The four theologians who participated were: Prof. Dr. Paul M. Collins, University of Chichester, UK, Anglican; Prof. Dr. Myriam Wijlens, University of Erfurt, Germany, Catholic; Dr. Minna Hietamaki, from Helsinki, Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland and Prof. Dr. Viorel Ionita, CiD, Orthodox.  The aim of the project is to investigate the understanding of the concept of “Church unity in relation to the concept of identity”. In order to achieve this aim the group will examine “Church unity” and “identity” at a theological-theoretical level and also at the level of lived experience; this will entail examining church practices.  The idea to launch this project came from the experiences of all four participants at the WCC Plenary Commission on Faith and Order, held last October in Crete. Through Prof. Collins, who is the coordinator of this group, the project is connected with the network on “Ecclesiological Investigations”. The main purpose of the meeting on the 22nd was to shape the whole project in terms of aims, working methodology, partners and timing. For that purpose each one of the four participants prepared a paper on unity from their respective theological traditions.  The project will last until September 2012 and will include presentations at the European level (CiD) as well as world wide levels (network on Ecclesiological Investigations and the annual meeting of the American Academy of Religion). The final outcome will be a publication with all the findings in order to promote the search for the Church unity world wide. Viorel Ionita stated that, “the meeting on 22nd of February was very dynamic and constructive. The four theological traditions represented were presented in a complementary way and we hope that in the future other theological traditions could be included such as those from a free-church background. As CEC we were happy to facilitate this first meeting and I hope that this project will very well fit into the CiD work on Church unity as recommended by the 13th  CEC Assembly which was held in Lyon (July 2009)”.
The Conference of European Churches (CEC) is a fellowship of some 120 Orthodox, Protestant, Anglican and Old Catholic Churches from all countries of Europe, plus 40 associated organisations. CEC was founded in 1959. It has offices in Geneva, Brussels and Strasbourg.

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Church representatives meet the Swedish EU-Presidency

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 2 ottobre 2009

The representatives of COMECE, the Church and Society Commission of the Conference of European Churches (CEC) and Swedish Churches expressed to the Swedish EU-Presidency their deep concern as regards the impact of climate change on the future of mankind and creation. Taking particularly into consideration the heavy burden that climate change represents for developing countries and for future generations, they encouraged the EU to take on all its responsibilities in the upcoming negotiations in Copenhagen, in order to achieve an ambitious worldwide agreement and to promote environmental justice. The discussions also focused on the topic of migration. As it is currently envisaged that a future EU Commissioner should be in charge of both migration and security, Church representatives emphasised the need to make a distinction between the question of migration and that of security issues. Migrants should have their dignity respected and not be considered as a threat to the security of the Union but as a “blessing and a grace” as any human being. In view of the forthcoming High Level Ministerial Conference “Towards Global EU Action Against Trafficking in Human Beings” the Churches also encouraged the Union to intensify its fight against any form of human trafficking and its efforts to protect victims of trafficking. The Church representatives, in view of the negotiations on Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons in the UN framework, expressed their hope in the Swedish EU Presidency to broker a common and positive European response to the “option zero” proposed by US President Obama. Referring to the draft Equality Directive currently being discussed at the Council of the EU, the Churches recalled their firm commitment against any form of discrimination. However, they expressed concern at the lack of sufficient legal clarity as regards the scope of the Directive in the areas, which remain outside of EU competence, such as education. The Churches also emphasised that any legislation ensuring equal treatment should guarantee respect for other rights and freedoms such as freedom of religion or belief and the freedom of expression. Therefore, all the consequences of the proposal should be duly taken into account before it is adopted. Finally, the representatives also discussed the issue of the dialogue between Churches and EU institutions. This dialogue, which has now been a tradition for many years, will be strengthened when the Treaty of Lisbon and Article 17 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU enter into force. Both the Swedish EU Presidency and the Church representatives insisted on the necessity for this Dialogue being open to a wide range of discussion topics. It should be strengthened on the European as well as on the national level. The meeting with the Swedish Presidency is a good illustration of the dialogue’s openness. It creates a climate of confidence and is a good sign for the future of this dialogue.

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The CPCE President congratulates Barroso

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 17 settembre 2009

Wipf: the CPCE churches continue to support the shaping of a Europe which is conscious of its responsibilities. In his letter of congratulation, the President of the Community of Protestant Churches in Europe (CPCE), Pastor Thomas Wipf, values the efforts of the President of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso, who was re-elected today, towards dialogue with the churches and religious communities.  “In your political guidelines you speak of a crisis of values which makes it necessary to reflect on the society in which we want to live. Specifically you call for a shaping of the markets so that they are conscious of their responsibility,” he remarks. “These are particularly important topics for the churches. In recent years they have been the subject of regular dialogue between the churches and the European Commission. Here the churches continue to support the shaping of a Europe which is conscious of its responsibilities.” Wipf also hopes that Barroso will be successful, with the composition of the new Commission, “in also gaining the support of those political groups which hitherto have been hesitant in their support. Europe needs a broad common basis if it is to master the tasks facing it.”

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Valerie Mrejen: La Virreina

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 16 luglio 2009

La De'faiteBarcelona until 6/9/2009 Palau de la Virreina, La Rambla 99,  Artist, photographer and writer, Vale’rie Mre’jen uses a variety of mediums to explore the rich potential of language. She uses short, familiar stories from everyday situations that she has read about or experienced to evoke childhood and its memories, the cruel or comical sides of life, commonplaces and misunderstandings. Her approach endows these familiar stories with an obsessive quality, making them strange through the power of the dialogue and the emptiness we can sense behind them.  In her films Mre’jen presents everyday situations that are like a sampling of human relations.  Vale’rie Mre’jen has made several videos and two short films and has published three stories: Mon Grand-pe’re (1999) – which she continued in 2000 with the photographs in the series L’Appartement de mon grand-pe’re – L’Agrume (2000) and Eau sauvage (2003), all with Allia. Her film Pork and Milk (52 mins) was made in 2002 when a gallery in Tel Aviv asked her to produce a work about contemporary Israeli society for an exhibition there.  (Image: La De’faite)

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Prayer and spirituality in ecumenical context

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 29 aprile 2009

A consultation on “Prayer and the Spirituality of Worship at Ecumenical Conferences” took place at the Augustana Theological Seminary in Neuendettelsau, Germany from 23-25 April 2009. The meeting was organised by the Churches in Dialogue Commission of the Conference of European Churches (CEC) and the Institute for Protestant Spirituality (Institut für Evangelische Aszetik) of Neuendettelsau.The aim of the consultation was to discuss the problems of and possibilities for spirituality and prayer at ecumenical conferences, and to offer suggestions for future work in this area. The discussions took as their starting point the final report of the Special Commission on Orthodox participation in the World Council of Churches (2002, which raised several questions related to common prayer). The consultation was also intended as a contribution to the preparation of the 13th CEC Assembly (15-21 July 2009, Lyon, France).Seven church traditions were represented at the consultation. Aspects of the theology of worship of each tradition were explored, focussing in particular on the possibilities, accents and sensibilities of each tradition in the context of ecumenical worship.Although acts of worship may take many forms, participants recognised that in all traditions the inner spiritual attitude is of enormous significance. Despite the variety of approaches to worship, the encounter with the holiness of the Trinitarian God stands at the centre of each act of worship. Common to all traditions is also the conviction that, in worship, the initiative is God’s.Participants underlined the importance of fostering mutual trust and to develop “liturgical confidence”, convinced that in the different liturgical traditions God conveys his grace to people. Spiritual life, including acts of worship, should not be regarded as being of less importance than the theological discourse, because spiritual life often results in a strong impulse to unity.
The Conference of European Churches (CEC) is a fellowship of some 120 Orthodox, Protestant, Anglican and Old Catholic Churches from all countries of Europe, plus 40 associated organisations. CEC was founded in 1959. It has offices in Geneva, Brussels and Strasbourg.

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Bologna Ministerial Conference

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 8 aprile 2009

Bologna Policy Forum will take place in the morning of 29 April 2009 at the University of Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgium) in the framework of the Bologna Ministerial Conference. An increasing number of countries around the world have shown their interest to be involved in a dialogue with the countries participating in the Bologna Process on how worldwide cooperation in higher education can be enhanced. At the same time there is growing interest among European countries to develop closer links with higher education systems around the world. Therefore, for the first time, a Bologna Policy Forum will be organised between Ministers of the 46 Bologna countries and colleagues from different parts of the world to facilitate global dialogue. (photo louvian)

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Launch of the Major Economies Forum on Energy and Climate

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 28 marzo 2009

The White House. The President is pleased to announce the launch of the Major Economies Forum on Energy and Climate.The Major Economies Forum will facilitate a candid dialogue among key developed and developing countries, help generate the political leadership necessary to achieve a successful outcome at the UN climate change negotiations that will convene this December in Copenhagen, and advance the exploration of concrete initiatives and joint ventures that increase the supply of clean energy while cutting greenhouse gas emissions. President Obama has invited the leaders of 16 major economies and the Secretary General of the United Nations to designate representatives to participate in a preparatory session at the Department of State on April 27-28 in Washington, D.C.  The preparatory sessions will culminate in a Major Economies Forum Leaders’ meeting, which Prime Minister Berlusconi has agreed to host in La Maddalena, Italy, in July 2009.   The 17 major economies are: Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, the European Union, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Russia, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States.  Denmark, in its capacity as the President of the December 2009 Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, and the United Nations have also been invited to participate in this dialogue.

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