In a world where religious and cultural differences often lead to conflict, the International Dialogue Centre - KAICIID stands out as an intergovernmental organization committed to bridging divides. With a unique dual governance structure that includes a Council of Parties composed of states and a Board of Directors of religious leaders, KAICIID operates under the patronage of Austria, Saudi Arabia, and the Holy See. This mix of political and religious guidance ensures its programmes remain independent and broadly focused.
Regional Focus: Africa and Beyond
In regions marred by discrimination and conflict, religious leaders and faith-based organizations are often the most trusted mediators. KAICIID's work in Africa, the Arab Region, Asia, and Europe involves training and workshops designed to facilitate dialogue between opposing parties. These efforts are aimed at finding common ground and shared values. Northern Mozambique, specifically the province of Cabo Delgado, epitomizes the challenges KAICIID seeks to address. Rich in natural resources but plagued by poverty and political marginalization, this region has become a breaking point for violence. Since 2017, insurgent groups have escalated tensions, leading to significant displacement and loss of life. The conflict has wider regional implications, affecting security in East and Southern Africa and stalling crucial economic projects.
The Role of KAICIID: Bridging Divides
Recognizing the urgency of the situation, KAICIID has launched initiatives to facilitate intra and inter-religious dialogue in Mozambique. This includes partnering with the African Union and other local actors to foster understanding and cooperation among Christian, Muslim, and traditional community leaders. The ultimate goal of KAICIID’s initiative in Mozambique is to harness the power of inter-religious dialogue (IRD) as a tool for conflict prevention and resolution. This involves raising awareness among key stakeholders in Cabo Delgado about the importance of IRD, establishing Interreligious Peace Committees for conflict early warning and response, and ensuring the relevance and contextualization of these efforts to the region's needs.
A pivotal part of this initiative is the organization of a 2-day awareness-raising event in Cabo Delgado taking place from today, the the 29th to the 30th of November 2023. This event aims to sensitize stakeholders to the importance of IRD in conflict transformation and to involve key local religious, youth, and women leaders in the project. An action plan for the establishment and functioning of Interreligious Peace Committees (IPC) is also a critical output.
This project is a collaborative effort involving KAICIID, the African Union Interfaith Dialogue Forum (AU-IFDF), the Interreligious Council of Mozambique, and other local and international partners. The All-Africa Conference of Churches (AACC), represented by the Council of Churches in Mozambique, is involved in providing technical support.
A path Towards Peace
The situation in Northern Mozambique is complex and fraught with challenges. However, KAICIID’s initiative represents a beacon of hope, leveraging the power of dialogue to address deep-seated issues. By bringing together various religious and community leaders, the organization aims to foster sustainable peace grounded in mutual understanding and respect. This approach not only addresses the immediate concerns in Cabo Delgado but also sets a precedent for conflict resolution efforts in the region.