Summary: The objective is to design an
international educational strategy
focused on the right to freedom of
religion and belief among pupils at
primary or elementary and secondary
educational levels, including making
recommendations in support of some
outlines for the establishment of
curricula and text books relating to
tolerance and non-discrimination in
religion and belief.
International Consultative Conference on School Education in
relation with Freedom of Religion and Belief, Tolerance and Non-
(Madrid, 23-25 November 2001)
Tolerance and non-discrimination in relation with freedom of
religion and belief in primary or elementary and secondary
The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the question of
religious intolerance in cooperation with the Government of Spain.
Design of an international educational strategy focused on the
right to freedom of religion and belief among pupils of the age
corresponding to primary or elementary and secondary
educational levels. The Conference aim is to examine a project of
a document which defines a set of recommendations in support of
some outlines for the establishment of curricula and text books
relating to tolerance and non-discrimination in the field of religion
and belief; taking into account article 18 of the Universal
Declaration of Human Right, article 18 of the International
Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the provisions on the
Declaration on the elimination of all forms of intolerance and
discrimination based on religion or belief.
As deplored by the Commission on Human Rights, the General
Assembly and the Special Rapporteur, intolerance and
discrimination based on religion and belief continue to manifest
themselves all over the world. In order to combat these
phenomena, the Special Rapporteur on religious intolerance has
been monitoring the situation in the field of freedom of religion
and belief and has been alerting the international community.
However, his daily activities have been mainly focused on the
manifestations of intolerance and discrimination and not on their
prevention. The Special Rapporteur and the Government of Spain
propose as an issue of the greatest importance to elaborate a
prevention strategy in this field.
The Special Rapporteur conducted a survey in 1994 by means of
a questionnaire addressed to States, on problems relating to
freedom of religion and belief in primary or elementary and
secondary educational institutions. Replies given by seventy
seven States can become one more subject for discussion.
The question of prevention of intolerance and discrimination
based on religion or belief at primary or elementary and
secondary educational levels has therefore to be clearly raised
and carefully examined. In that spirit, a consultative international
conference on school education in relation with freedom of
religion or belief is organised.
To prepare recommendations to be discussed and adopted by
the Conference on 25th November 2001, that corresponds with
the 2Oth anniversary of the adoption of the United Nations 1981
Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of
Discrimination Based on Religion of Belief.
Representatives of State, intergovernmental organisations, major
religions and other communities in the field of religion and belief,
non-governmental organisations, and experts.
By means of preparatory consultation and discussion during the
Conference aimed at the protection against intolerance and
discrimination and the improvement of human rights protection, in
particular the right to freedom of religion or belief.
Association: UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights