Religious leaders urged to stand against violent extremism

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Ban Ki-moon at the High-level Thematic Debate on Promoting Tolerance and Reconciliation. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

The leaders of the world's religious faiths have been urged to use their spiritual and moral influence to counter violent extremism.

The UN Secretary-General made the call as religious leaders gathered at the United Nations to discuss ways to promote tolerance and reconciliation.

Daniel Dickinson has more details.

The rise of terrorist groups, especially in the Middle East, has coincided with a period of conflict and insecurity across the region.

The videos of beheadings of people of all faiths which have been posted on the Internet are just one example of the violent extremism that faith leaders are discussing in New York.

The UN chief, Ban Ki-moon made this appeal to those leaders.

"Many of you can see the forces of radicalization or intolerance at play. I urge you to use your spiritual and moral influence to counter their narrative by standing up for moderation and mutual understanding."

The Secretary-General announced that he would set up an advisory panel of faith leaders and others to address what he called "these complex issues."

He also committed to releasing a UN Plan of Action to Prevent Violent Extremism.

Daniel Dickinson, United Nations

Duration: 0’58″

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