A conference on “Stopping the Massacres of Christians in Nigeria. Italy’s initiatives” will take place on Thursday 19 July 2012 at the Foreign Press Association (Via dell’Umiltà 83/C – Roma). The Conference is being organised by the Foreign Ministry’s Observatory for Religious Freedom and Roma Capitale.
The proceedings will be introduced by Massimo Introvigne, Coordinator of the Observatory. Speakers will include the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Giulio Terzi; the Mayor of Rome, Giovanni Alemanno; and the Hon. Margherita Boniver, the Foreign Minister’s Special Envoy for Humanitarian Emergencies.
The promotion of religious freedom in all its forms, and the protection of religious minorities throughout the world, are a priority of Italy’s foreign policy and its ethical dimension. This key strand of our country’s international activities has recently gained an even higher profile in the wake of the horrific episodes of violence against Christian communities in the African continent.
The Observatory was conceived in 2011 after the wave of attacks against Christian communities in the Middle East. Its aim was to create – together with our Representation to the Holy See – a body dedicated to intensifying the efforts of Italy and the international community in protecting religious minorities.
The world looks to our capital city as a beacon of dialogue and tolerance among religious faiths; as the seat of Christianity’s greatest basilica and the biggest mosque in Europe; and as the home of the world’s oldest Jewish community. In that knowledge, Minister Terzi and Mayor Alemanno – with strong encouragement from the Pope – signed a Protocol of Understanding at the Foreign Ministry in January 2012 to set up the Observatory.
The Conference on 19 July will be the second international meeting organised by the Observatory. It follows the event on 28 June dedicated to reflection on the situation of the Roman Catholic Church in the USA, which was attended by the Archbishop of Baltimore, Mons. William Lori.
Journalists, photographers and camera operators interested in following the event are asked to apply for specific accreditation using the online accreditation system. Please complete the interactive form available at http://mae.accreditationsystem.info/ITA/Indice.asp to which all required documentation must be attached in digital format if not already submitted. This includes a letter from their media organisation and, for foreign journalists in Italy, a note verbale issued by the Embassy in Rome of their media organisation).
If it is not possible to complete the online accreditation procedure, applications should be sent by fax to the Foreign Ministry’s Press and Institutional Communication Service (fax 06/3691.2122–tel. 06/3691.3432)
Accredited journalists, photographers and camera operators should report to the Foreign Press Association (Via dell’Umiltà 83/c) from 11.15 onwards on Thursday 19 July 2012.