Involving Religious Leaders and Congregations in Joint Efforts
The OSCE, which already engages with religion in a number of contexts, should promote greater
‘religious literacy’ and regard religion as a potential resource for security-building.
As of 2018, the OSCE already has mandates to engage with religion in a number of areas:
· Freedom of Religion or Belief (including the ODIHR Panel of Experts on Freedom of Religion or Belief )
· Tolerance and Non-Discrimination (TND) (including the role of the three Special Representatives)
· Violent Radicalization and Extremism that Lead to Terrorism (VERLT)
· Conflict management and post-conflict situations
· Inter-religious dialogue (at field mission level)
This means engaging with religion, and with religious leaders, institutions, congregations, and communities, to promote the key overarching conditions for societal stability and sustainable development, in accordance with the underlying vision of the OSCE. Especially in relation to Central Asia, the most effective security strategies are multifaceted and should not oversimplify the long-term factors of instability.
The report also provides recommendations for the OSCE
This project was initiated by Philip McDonagh, Senior Fellow at the Edward M. Kennedy Institute and a former Irish Ambassador to the OSCE (2013- 2017). It was jointly sponsored by the Austrian Federal Ministry for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs, the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Ireland.
For more information see OSCE website