Under the patronage of His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa the “King Hamad Peaceful Coexistence Award” was launched in a ceremony held in Los Angeles.
The ceremony was attended by officials, ambassadors, diplomats, religious leaders, cultural and media figures, including former US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
Dr. Shaikh Abdullah bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Political Affairs and the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the King Hamad Global Centre for Peaceful Coexistence, highlighted HM King Hamad’s efforts to promote Bahrain as a global centre to promote cultural convergence among followers of different religions and faiths.
He underlined the continuous support of His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the Crown Prince and Prime Minister, in delivering this message of coexistence to nations of the world.
Dr. Shaikh Abdullah emphasised that the launch of the King Hamad Award for Peaceful Coexistence the royal approach of promoting coexistence and religious freedom; and countering racism, bigotry, and extremism.
He noted that the Bahrain Declaration was also launched in Los Angeles in 2017 as a document that aims to consolidate the approach of moderation and rejection of intolerance.
The chairman praised the Bahraini-US ties and their ongoing development in all fields.
Bahrain is known as a country of civilizations, openness to other cultures, and a safe place for everyone to practice their religious beliefs and rituals freely, based on the values of protecting freedoms, respecting diversity, and building bridges of coexistence and harmony, he said.
The King Hamad Peaceful Coexistence Award, which was first announced during the opening of the Bahrain Dialogue Forum “East and West for Human Coexistence” last November, provides an opportunity for the global recognition of efforts that support coexistence and peace, he added.
He said that this prestigious award is added to the series of initiatives launched by His Majesty the King in this domain, including the establishment of the King Hamad Global Centre for Peaceful Coexistence, the launch of the Bahrain Declaration, and the inauguration of the King Hamad Chair for Dialogue between Religions and Peaceful Coexistence at the University of Sapienza in Italy.
Dr. Shaikh Abdullah highlighted the positive role played by the King Hamad Global Centre for Peaceful Coexistence as a global partner in defending human rights and promoting the spirit of human fraternity among people of all religions and cultures.
The former US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo praised the efforts made by the kingdom to promote values of tolerance and coexistence.
The King Hamad Award for Peaceful Coexistence represents yet another important initiative in this direction, he said.
Pompeo highlighted the continuous collaboration between the King Hamad Global Centre for Peaceful Coexistence and the Simon Wiesenthal Center, to bring together followers of different religions and faiths.
The former US Secretary of State described his participation in the award’s launch as “wonderful” and expressed his readiness to cooperate with the initiatives of the King Hamad Global Centre for Peaceful Coexistence in this regard.
Ambassador Marco Suazo, Head of the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) New York Office, highlighted that the King Hamad Award for Peaceful Coexistence is closely aligned with the goals and objectives of the United Nations, particularly in relation to promoting the message of peace and peaceful coexistence among peoples.
He affirmed that Bahrain always took the lead internationally in initiatives that promote peace and peaceful coexistence.
The King Hamad Global Centre for Peaceful Coexistence had held a press conference before the ceremony, attended by Dr. Shaikh Abdullah bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, Chairman of the Board of Trustees, and a number of political and religious figures, as well as representatives of American and international institutions, in the presence of various media outlets, to announce the award and its objectives. The press conference also highlighted the most prominent initiatives of the Kingdom of Bahrain, in the fields of peace, tolerance, and peaceful coexistence.