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G20 Interfaith Forum on COVID-19, Inequality, Climate

PaRD member KAICIID is co-organizing this year’s G20 Interfaith Forum in Saudi Arabia. Due to the pandemic, the event from October 13 to 17 will be streamed virtually from Riyadh.

The G20 Interfaith Forum, a leading organization focused on bringing faith and policy together, today announced plans, participants and highlights for its seventh annual G20 Interfaith Forum to be streamed virtually from Riyadh with leaders from across the globe on Oct. 13 to 17, 2020. More than 500 leaders and representatives from several of the world’s major religions and global policy institutions will participate and address crises, including the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change, disaster risk reduction, hate speech and racism. In addition to attracting leaders from most major world religions, denominations and interreligious organizations, the G20 Interfaith Forum will include representatives from the United Nations, the International Dialogue Centre (KAICIID), the Organization of Islamic Cooperation), the World Muslim League, and the European Commission.

The G20 Interfaith Forum seeks global solutions by collaborating with religious thought leaders and political representatives and calls upon the world’s political leaders to include religious actors in the policymaking process leading up to November’s 2020 G20 Leaders’ Summit in Riyadh as well as to build policy based on shared values of solidarity, coexistence and respect.

The 2020 G20 Interfaith Forum is co-organized by the G20 Interfaith Forum Association, KAICIID, the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC), and the National Committee for Interreligious and Intercultural Dialogue in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (NCIRD).

“The seventh annual G20 Interfaith Forum represents the culmination of a yearlong process of consultation that has brought together more than 500 representatives of religious and faith-based organizations, international and national policymakers and experts in six regional meetings,” said Professor Cole Durham, President of the G20 Interfaith Forum Association and Founding Director of the International Center for Law and Religion Studies. “At each meeting, participants focused on global policies and highlighted relevant actions the G20 leaders and religious communities should consider at the G20 Interfaith Forum. This forum convenes the global religious community at precisely the most opportune moment, as the world faces an unprecedented combination of interrelated challenges.”

Recommendations from these meetings and of continuing task forces on priority topics will be presented to the G20, which is chaired this year by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

The five-day G20 Interfaith Forum conference is open to the public and will be streamed at

Sessions will focus on ways religious leaders can work with governments to combat racism and hate speech; contribute to the advancement of migrants, refugees, women and youth; address the issue of modern slavery and human trafficking; protect shared religious and cultural heritage; and mitigate the consequences of environmental degradation and climate change. An entire day of the program will be dedicated to discussing the COVID-19 pandemic as religious communities are both uniquely affected by the pandemic: being scapegoated for rising infection rates in many parts of the world, on the one hand, yet also leading in the provision of aid for those affected by the pandemic and the social inequities it has exposed on the other.

Leading participants include the following:

• His All Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, Orthodox Archbishop of Constantinople- New Rome and Ecumenical Patriarch

• H.E. Dr. Amina J. Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations and Chair of the United Nations Sustainable Development Group

• His Eminence Cardinal Miguel Ángel Ayuso Guixot, President of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue and member of the KAICIID Board of Directors

• H.E. Dr. Mohammad Al-Issa, Secretary General, Muslim World League

• H.E. Dr. Yousef bin Ahmed Al-Othaimeen, Secretary General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation

• H.E Abdullatif Al-Sheikh, Minister of Religious Affairs in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

• H.E. Rev. Kjell Magne Bondevik, former Prime Minister of Norway and Founder and Executive Chair of the Oslo Center

• Chief Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt, Conference of European Rabbis

• Dr. Azza Karam, Secretary General of Religions for Peace

• H.E. Faisal bin Muaammar, Secretary General of the International Dialogue Centre (KAICIID)

• H.E. Miguel Ángel Moratinos, High Representative for the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC)

• H.E. Aminata Toure, former Prime Minister of Senegal

To register and for a complete program with a schedule of topics, speakers and sessions times, visit