I.P.O. Information Service



International Progress Organization joins World Public Forum for Dialogue of Civilizations

Moscow, 27 March 2006


In a programmatic statement delivered at an international consultation convened by the World Public Forum for the Dialogue of Civilizations (WPFDC) in Moscow, the President of the International Progress Organization, Dr. Hans Koechler, identified the absence of an international balance of power as major obstacle to a global dialogue among civilizations. A unipolar world order is not compatible with equality and partnership among nations, the prerequisites of meaningful dialogue; a constellation in which one party tries to impose its value system and world perception upon virtually all other nations is detrimental to dialogue as well as to global peace and stability, Dr. Koechler explained. He said that the International Progress Organization has been committed to the idea of a global dialogue of civilizations since its very first international conference on "The Cultural Self-comprehension of Nations" in 1974.

The International Progress Organization joined the "international network of NGOs for the dialogue of civilizations" which was established at the initiative of the World Public Forum "Dialogue of Civilizations" in the course of the deliberations in Moscow (25-26 March 2006). The meeting was presided by the Founding Chairman of the WPFDC, Mr. Vladimir Yakunin (Russia), who stressed the need for better co-ordination among non-governmental organizations at the global level.

The World Public Forum was established in 2003 through the joint efforts of public forces in Russia, India and Greece. The position paper of the WPFDC for the Moscow meeting states that other fora such as the World Economic Forum or the World Social Forum have also emphasized the interconnectedness of human destiny, but are not sufficiently attentive to the role of different cultural, religious and civilizational traditions. There is an urgent need "to fill this gap by engaging in a creative and wideranging global dialogue between cultures, religions and civilizations."

The international consultation was attended by NGO representatives from Armenia, Austria, Germany, Greece, France, Italy, Russia, Singapore, Switzerland, and Turkey.  They elected Mr. Walter Schwimmer (Austria), former Secretary-General of the Council of Europe, as co-ordinator of the international network of NGOs for the dialogue of civilizations, and discussed the program of the forthcoming annual meeting of the World Public Forum to be held on the island of Rhodes (Greece) in September 2006.

END/ International Progress Organization joins World Public Forum for Dialogue of Civilizations/2006-03-27/P/RE/19638c-is