An exhibition of world-renowned photographer Reza Deghati, which presented works reflecting religious tolerance in Azerbaijan was held in UNESCO headquarters in Paris at the initiative of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation with the support of Azerbaijan's State Committee for Work with Religious Organizations, the committee reported on October 23.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Chairman of the State Committee for Work with Religious Organizations Elshad Iskandarov said that Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev always pays special attention to the issue of conservation and showing support for the tradition of tolerance which is the national feature of the Azerbaijani people.
Referring to the words of President Ilham Aliyev that "respect for multiculturalism, ethnic and religious minorities is a national characteristic of the Azerbaijani people", chairman of the State Committee said that the ongoing exhibition, which celebrates intercultural dialogue and religious tolerance in Azerbaijan, is a prime example of Azerbaijan's coherent and consistent policy in this direction.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, High Representative of the Alliance Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser thanked President Ilham Aliyev for his support in promoting intercultural dialogue and religious tolerance, noting that living in Azerbaijan in an atmosphere of respect for people who profess different religions is model for the world.
Author of the photos represented at the exhibition, famous photographer Reza Deghati announced the Photolerance international contest of young people, which will be organized by Azerbaijan'a State Committee for Work with Religious Organizations and the UN Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC).
Deghati noted that this photo competition was aimed at highlighting the importance of dialogue as a tool to eliminate the barriers associated with differences among young people, as well as drawing attention to the importance of diversity as an example of the cultural wealth of mankind.
The competition is open to young people all over the world at the age of 18-25. The photographic works will be selected by authoritative experts and cultural figures from different countries. The winners will be awarded at the UN Alliance of Civilizations' 6th Global Forum, to be held in 2014.
The photo exhibition titled "Azerbaijan - the Center of Tolerance" has aroused the interest of more than 500 guests, who gathered in the exhibition hall.
Earlier, the same exhibition was held at UN headquarters in New York. High-ranking delegations which gathered at the UN General Assembly, UN diplomats, and media representatives attended the event.