World Council of Churches -
Contact: + 41 22 791 6153 +41 79 507 6363
For immediate release:
4 December 2003
Iranian President Mohammad Khatami
to visit the World Council of Churches
11 December 2003, 15h30-17h00
Ecumenical Centre - 150 route de Ferney, Geneva
(Only by invitation – Press representatives
must register in advance to attend, see below)
The visit programme includes the only public lecture to be given by H.E. Mohammad Khatami, president of the Islamic Republic of Iran, during his presence in Geneva.
The lecture, on “Interreligious Dialogue and International Relations”, will be delivered in the Ecumenical Centre’s main hall at 15h30.
The prime minister of Norway, Rev. Kjell Magne Bondevik, and WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Konrad Raiser
will open the dialogue with President Khatami after the lecture. Questions from the audience will be allowed.
The visit programme includes a meeting with both outgoing and incoming WCC general secretaries Rev. Dr Konrad Raiser and Rev. Dr Samuel Kobia.
About H.E. Mohammad Khatami
President Mohammad Khatami, who holds degrees in philosophy, religious studies and educational sciences, is well known for his initiative on a "Dialogue among Civilizations" at the 53rd Session of UN general assembly in September 1998, and for proclamation of the year 2001 as the UN "Year of Dialogue among Civilizations" following his proposal. More recently, he has stated that "the Dialogue among Civilizations and a coalition for peace are the means to end the current atmosphere of hostility in the international community," and that the international campaign against terrorism will be successful if justice prevails in the world community and the rights of people are honoured.
President Khatami will speak in Farsi. Interpretation into French and English will be provided.
IMPORTANT: Advance registration is necessary due to security reasons. Please call or send an e-mail to the WCC Media Relations Office by Wednesday 10 December noon.
WCC Media Relations Office: tel: 022 791 6153 / 6421 / 6061
Juan Michel,+41 22 791 6153 +41 79 507 6363
The World Council of Churches promotes Christian unity in faith, witness and service for a just and peaceful world. An ecumenical fellowship of churches founded in 1948, today the WCC brings together 349 Protestant, Orthodox, Anglican and other churches representing more than 560 million Christians in over 110 countries, and works cooperatively with the Roman Catholic Church. The WCC general secretary is Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, from the [Lutheran] Church of Norway. Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland.