International Panel of Parliamentarians for Freedom of Religion or Belief

Invitation to Parliamentarians

An Embattled Right: Protecting and Promoting Freedom of Religion or Belief

Berlin, Germany – 12–14 September, 2016

Last year, the International Panel of Parliamentarians for Freedom of Religion or Belief (IPPFoRB), the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS) and the CDU/CSU Parliamentary Group in the German Bundestag hosted the First International Parliamentarians’ Conference on “Multinational Efforts to Promote Freedom of Religion or Belief”. Nearly 100 parliamentarians from over 45 countries participated in this conference that took place in New York in September 2015.

The IPPFoRB, the KAS and the CDU/CSU-Parliamentary Group have the honour to invite you to the Second International Parliamentarians’ Conference on the promotion of Religious Freedom or Belief. The conference will be held under the title “An Embattled Right: Protecting and Promoting Freedom of Religion or Belief” and will take place from 12 to 14 September 2016 in Berlin, Germany. The conference will focus on multifaceted approaches for parliamentarians to defend and enhance Freedom of Religion or Belief and consists of two parts: a capacity building conference for parliamentarians, 12 to 13 September 2016, and a political symposium, 14 September 2016.

During the conference in New York in 2015 and the preceding IPPFoRB-founding event in Oslo in 2014, participants underlined the importance of Article 18: “Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance”. In order to continue on this road, we assume that all participants of this year’s conference support the entire meaning of Article 18 and are supportive of the IPPFoRB’s founding charter.

To be able to participate we would kindly ask you to register by 20 July 2016 here (*Please note that registration is now closed). In the enclosed programme you can find detailed information on the parliamentarians’ conference and on the political conference respectively. We offer an informal programme prior to the conference starting in the evening of 11 September 2016 to which all participants are invited. Parliamentarians participating in the conference are cordially invited to the opening reception taking place on the evening of 12 September 2016 in the German Bundestag. The organisers will be able to grant assistance with travel and accommodation for a limited number of participants from non-OECD countries. It is highly recommended to register by the stated period in order to increase chances to receive funding. In making their decisions on grant assistance the organisers will work to ensure geographical and religious diversity.

For further questions, please contact the IPPFoRB Secretariat (contact@ippforb.com).

We very much hope we will have the opportunity to welcome you to Berlin in September!

Yours,

Baroness Elizabeth Berridge of the Vale of Catmose
International Panel of Parliamentarians on Freedom of Religion or Belief

Dr. Hans-Gert Pöttering
President of the European Parliament ret.
Chairman of the Konrad-Adenauer Stiftung

Volker Kauder
Chairman of the CDU/CSU-Parliamentary Group in the German Bundestag