Cardiff to host international conference on peaceful coexistence


The University of Wales Trinity Saint David is one of three organisations that will be hosting a joint conference on peaceful co-existence in December to explore how religious groups can co-operate locally and globally. The Ethical Approaches to Peaceful Coexistence Conference is being hosted by UWTSD, the Muslim Council of Wales, and the Saudi-based Knowledge Exchange Program and will bring together academics and practitioners from across Europe and the Middle-East. It will be held in Cardiff on the 5th December 2017.

Muslim Council for Wales Conference

The keynote speaker is the Grand Mufti Emeritus of Bosnia, Dr Mustafa Ceric, one of the most senior European Muslim scholars, who will be reflecting and sharing his experiences and lessons learned from conflict and genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Other speakers include Dr Edward Kessler OBE, Director of the Woolf Institute for improving relations between religion and society, Catriona Robertson of the Muslim-Christian Forum, Rabbi Monique Mayer from Cardiff and Bristol Progressive communities, and Dr Abdullah Al Lheedan from the Knowledge Exchange Program and author of Tolerance in Islam.

The one-day conference is aimed to identify practical ways in which communities locally and globally can build on shared values. Speaking about the intention behind the conference, Saleem Kidwai, Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Wales, said “society is very polarised at the moment, and all of us have a responsibility to try and bring it together, this is an example of faith groups and academic institutions working together for that”. He continued “Islam in particular is often accused of being responsible for violence, this couldn’t be further from the truth, and this conference will have many Muslim scholars who are in position to speak authoritatively about Islamic teachings”.

Dr Catrin Williams, Reader in Theology and Religious Studies at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David notes that “scholars in Theology and Religious Studies have much to contribute to understanding and addressing many of today’s problems; this conference promises to be an opportunity to do just that”.

The conference will be opened by Lord Dafydd Elis-Thomas, and will be attended by politicians, academics, faith leaders and members of the public.

Saleem Kidwai believes that Wales is the perfect place for the conference. “Wales is leading the way on many issues. The Future Generations Act is exemplary, and the Faith Communities Forum the Welsh Government holds is a model that other countries should look to adopting. It is absolutely perfect for Cardiff to host this conference as a country that is determined to be innovative and radical in creating a fairer society”.

Note to Editor

The Muslim Council of Wales is an umbrella body representing Welsh mosques and Islamic organisations. 

Further Information

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