INTERNATIONAL DAY FOR TOLERANCE

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On this International Day of Tolerance, I call on all people and governments to actively combat fear, hatred and extremism with dialogue, understanding and mutual respect. Let us advance against the forces of division and unite for our shared future.  -UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Tolerance is the foundation for mutual respect among people and communities, and is vital for building a single global society around shared values. It is a virtue and a quality, above all, an act of reaching out to others and seeing the strength in differences not barriers, opportunity in diversity not opposition, and an undivided invitation for dialogue and understanding.

The International Day for Tolerance is a time for people to commemorate and recognize the importance of respecting the rights and beliefs of others. It is also an opportunity to reaffirm their commitment to work for the recognition and protection of human rights and raise awareness on the negative effects of intolerance. The United Nations (UN) International Day for Tolerance is annually observed on the 16th of November to educate and remind people about the need for tolerance and its importance in the society.

We, at World Assembly of Youth, believe that tolerance cannot be taken for granted. It has to be taught, nurtured and communicated. Education, whether formal, informal or non-formal, should seek to avoid any atom of intolerance that may affect the state of youth understanding. A deliberate action is suggested to ensure that no youth should be found suffering the consequences of not being tolerated. Everyone deserves to be treated with respect.

In support, we strongly urge the youth and youth leaders to protect people from discrimination and to encourage tolerance for all regardless of nationality, religion, language, race, sexuality or any other distinct characteristics that obscures our common humanity.

On this International Day of Tolerance, let us recommit to dialogue and establish a mutual understanding among all peoples and communities especially youth, and let us focus our minds and hearts on those who face discrimination and marginalization.

A single humanity means living together and working together on the basis of communal respect for the great wealth of human diversity.