Strong Support of Cultural and Religion Freedoms in UN Human Development Report

  • post Type / Growth and Development
  • Date / 20 August 2004

[img]https://humanists.international/uploads/img4125ef943b5d6.png[/img]The UN has published its 2004 Human Development Report which is highly regarded for its pathbreaking analysis and policy recommendations. The Human Development Report goes beyond the traditional development parameters of economic wealth and sustainability, and emphasises human welfare and well being above all else. The report, which is published in more than a dozen languages and is launched simultaneously in 100 countries, takes an important stance on cultural and religious freedoms.

The report says:
– Everybody should have the right to criticize, revise or challenge the dominance of a particular interpretation of core beliefs.
– Clergy or other religious hierarchies should have the same status as other citizens.
– People of one religion must be allowed to be responsibly critical of the practices and beliefs of other religions.
– Individuals must be free not only to criticize the religion into which they are born, but also to reject it for another or to remain without one.

The UNDP Report and its recommendatons have received widespread publicity and media coverage. Reuters quoted the IHEU and its member organisation the National Secular Society:

“Roy Brown, Swiss-based President of the International Humanist and Ethical Union, said the recommendations were “a remarkably clear statement of what should ideally be the position in all states, whether they have an Islamic, Christian, Hindu, Jewish or Atheist majority.”

“Keith Porteous Wood of Britain’s National Secular Society said there was a desperate need for international politicians of goodwill to fight to implement these recommendations”.

Disappointingly, these recommendations are missing in its Arabic version.


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