MEDIA ADVISORY: Side Event to the 75th Anniversary of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide: “The Role of Religious Communities in Upholding and Implementing the Genocide Convention”
Tuesday, 28 November 2023, 10am EST
ECOSOC Chamber, UN Headquarters, New York
On the margins of the 75th anniversary of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (Genocide Convention) commemoration, the Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) are organizing an event highlighting the role of religious leaders and faith communities in upholding and implementing the values and principles of the 1948 Genocide Convention at the United Nations Headquarters, New York.
Alice Wairimu Nderitu, Under-Secretary-General and UN Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide; and Miguel Ángel Moratinos, Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations are hosting the event, with a discussion with religious leaders and actors, including:
- Ms. Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati, Secretary-General of the Global Interfaith WASH Alliance
- Dr. Mohamed Elsanousi, Executive Director of The Network for Religious & Traditional Peacemakers
- Rabbi Burton L. Visotzky, Appleman Professor of Midrash and Interreligious Studies Emeritus at the Jewish Theological Seminary
- Ms. Debra Boudreaux, Chief Executive Officer of the Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation
- Mr. Rudelmar Bueno de Faria, General Secretary at ACT Alliance
Tuesday, 28 November; 10:00–11:45 p.m. EST (New York time / UTC-5)
United Nations Headquarters, New York, ECOSOC Chamber
In addition, the event will be streamed live on UN Web TV:
This year marks the 75th anniversary of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, a crucial global commitment that was made at the founding of the United Nations, immediately preceding the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
At its landmark 75th anniversary, the Genocide Convention remains highly relevant. The 1948 Genocide Convention codified for the first time the crime of genocide in international law. Its preamble recognizes that “at all periods of history genocide has inflicted great losses on humanity” and that international cooperation is required to “liberate humankind from such an odious scourge”. To date, 153 States have ratified the Convention. Achieving universal ratification of the Convention remains an important step in advancing genocide prevention. The Genocide Convention includes the obligation not only to punish the crime of genocide but, also to prevent it. During the 75 years since its adoption, the Genocide Convention has played an important role in the development of international criminal law, in holding perpetrators of this crime accountable and in giving a voice to the victims.
Religious leaders and actors across all faiths are key partners in advancing the United Nations’ principles and values and the work of the UN under its three pillars, namely peace and security, human rights and sustainable development. More specific to the prevention of genocide and other atrocity crimes, religious leaders and actors have a pivotal role in fostering peaceful, inclusive and just societies. In this context, since 1948, scores of religious leaders and actors have been tirelessly championing the Genocide Convention, advocating for its ratification, domestication, and implementation. The event aims at showcasing stories of religious leaders and actors who have been promoting, protecting and implementing the Genocide Convention. On 28 November, religious leaders and faith actors will share their stories and provide insights about how the legacy of the Convention can be further upheld by religious communities, as part of wider efforts to renew the global commitment to prevent genocide.
For media queries, please contact:
Julie Ann Ladanan at the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (firstname.lastname@example.org);
Dalila Sadinlija at Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide (email@example.com)