Western Europe

  • What more can Europe do to Advance Human Rights?

    Panel on Eastern DRC violence

    Brussels, Belgium- The UPF, Women's Federation for World Peace (WFWP), and the European Economic and Social Committee organized a European Leadership Conference at the European Parliament in Belgium on the theme "What More Can Europe Do to Advance Human Rights?" December 4 and 5, 2012.

  • Sects or Religions? A Human Rights Perspective

    Willy Fautré, Director of Human Rights Without Frontiers (Brussels)

    Is there a distinction to be made between “cults” or “sects” and religions? Should religious freedom be only accessible to so-called historical religions and their members? Should other minority religious or spiritual movements called “sects” or “cults” be denied the enjoyment of the provisions of international declarations and covenants guaranteeing freedom of religion or belief?

  • Multiculturalism in the Framework of Human Rights

    Dr Aaron Rhodes, President of FOREF – Europe

    I would like to use these brief remarks to offer some perspectives on the notion of “multiculturalism,” and to share my concerns, as a human rights advocate, about threats to fundamental human rights in Europe posed by some interpretations of multiculturalism.

  • Learning to Live Together: children’s rights, identities and citizenship

    Tobias Troll

    The UN Convention  on the Rights of the Child (United  Nations  1989, CRC) is a binding international  contract in the framework of the United Nations, and thus obliges legally the ratifying  nations  – indeed  all UN  members  besides  the  United  States  and  Somalia  – to implement  its  provisions.  This  is a mayor  milestone  to  recognise  children,  i.e.  everyone under  the  age  of  18,  as  citizens  with  human  rights,  and  consequently  responsibilities. Through  this  convention,  children  are  conceived  as subjects  of society  – like  all human beings  – and  not anymore  as mere  objects  of protection  (Verhellen  2000).

  • Youth in the Council of Europe

    Illario Esposito

    Ms. Illario Esposito, member of the Council of Europe Advisory Council on Youth and Trainer in Human Rights Education, first showed a video about the Advisory Council on Youth for the Council of Europe dealing with human rights (see She explained that In terms of human rights education, the Council of Europe speaks about all the issues that young people are facing today.

  • The European Union, European Citizens and Human Rights

    Dr Aaron Rhodes, President of FOREF – Europe

    The European Union is often criticized by people like me for a wide range of alleged policy and administrative failures regarding human rights.  Today, however, I would like to use this opportunity to attest to the importance of Europe’s role in promoting and protecting human rights, which I can do on the basis of my own experience and reflection.

  • What More can Europe do to Improve Human Rights?

    Dr Yong Cheon Song

    Distinguished guests, Ambassadors for Peace, Ladies & Gentlemen! As Chair of Universal Peace Federation in Europe, it is truly an honour and a privilege to be able to extend a warm welcome to you all to the European Economic and Social Committee here in Brussels and to our European Leadership Conference on the theme “What more can Europe do to improve Human Rights?”

  • Why are women important to leadership and decision-making?

    Carolyn Handschin, President WFWP Europe

    Mrs. Carolyn Handschin, who started by citing the courage of the Mirabal sisters, four Dominican political dissidents who opposed the dictatorship of Rafael Trujillo. On November 25, 1960, three of the sisters were assassinated. In 1999, the sisters received recognition by the United Nations General Assembly, who designated November 25 as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women in their honour.

  • Religious Freedom in Hungary and the New Law on Minority Faiths

    Jura Nanuk

    Mr. Jura Nanuk, founder and president of the Central-European Religious Freedom Institute (CERFI) based in Budapest, Hungary, spoke on the topic of “Religious Freedom in Hungary and the New Law on Minority Faiths”. Mr. Nanuk said he was inspired to start his institute by an anonymous quote, “Sometimes I want to ask Godwhy He allows poverty, famine and injustice in the world, but I’m afraid He may ask me the same question.”

  • A new vision of Europe - Principles and identification of common life

    Rabbi Joseph Abittan

    Mankind is not reduced to citizenship. A superior power prevails over men’s power. Human rights are untouchable and more important to singular identities In front of a unique God that mankind can be one, and greater than each man in his family. Mankind remains forever under God’s supervision, even if some people forget it.

  • Berlin Conference Addresses a Future Vision for Europe

    Berlin Conference Addresses a Future Vision for Europe

    Berlin, Germany - A European Leadership Conference in Berlin November 15-17 addressed the issue "What Kind of Europe Do We Want in the Future?" (Wie soll das Europa der Zukunft aussehen?). Some 80 participants listened to and discussed 20 presentations assessing and presenting possible solutions to the current crisis of Europe in general and the European Union in particular.

  • Europe and Russia - Partners in a Globalized World

    Europe and Russia - Partners in a Globalized World

    An International Leadership conference on the topic "Europe and Russia - Partners in a Globalized World," was held in Vienna on October 12 and 13, 2012, organized by the Universal Peace Federation (UPF) in cooperation with the Academic Council on the United Nations System (ACUNS) and the Women's Federation for World Peace.

  • Session 8: Closing Session - Updates and Overview

    The eighth session consisted of reflections and the presentation of Ambassador for Peace Certificates.

  • Session 6: The Future of Europe and Russia - A Youth Perspective

    The sixth session was chaired by Mr. Bogdan Pammer, Youth Director, UPF-Europe.

  • Session 5: Women in Leadership Roles in the 21st Century

    The fifth session was chaired by Mrs. Yoshiko Pammer, Youth UPF-Austria.

  • Session 7: Education for Global Citizenship and Sustainable Peace

    The seventh session was chaired by Mr. Peter Zöhrer, President of the Unification Movement in Austria.

  • Intervention of Dr Irina Borisovna Orlova

    Irina Borisovna Orlova, Ph.D., Professor, Institute of Social and Political Research, Russian Academy of Sciences

    Many former theoretical concepts about the inter-ethnic and inter-cultural interactions between different population groups in Europe are being revised. One such concept is multiculturalism.

  • Intervention of Mr Sergei Kuchinsky

    Sergei Kuchinsky, Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Council of the Assembly of the Peoples of Russia

    The Second World War with its countless victims was a great tragedy for all humanity. One of the most important motivations for opposing any acts of aggression and violence should be the remembrance of millions of fallen, mutilated, and tortured victims of concentration camps.

  • Intervention of Dr Walter Schwimmer

    Dr Walter Schwimmer, Former Secretary General, Council of Europe

    Europe is a strange continent. Strictly speaking, indeed it is not a continent at all but a mere peninsula tacked onto Asia. Looking at the map, Russia west of the Ural Mountains is either the base or the beginning of this peninsula. But, because of its unmistakable cultural identity, this peninsula has become a continent on its own and Russia is without any doubt an indispensable part of it.

  • Intervention of Dr. Yong Cheon Song

    Dr. Yong Cheon Song, Former Chair, Universal Peace Federation, Europe

    First of all, as Chair of Universal Peace Federation in Europe I would like to extend a warm and heartfelt welcome to each and every one of you to this important conference on "Europe and Russia: Partners in a Globalised World". It is very good to see you all here today!

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