Vladimir Yakunin, Ph. D (Political Sciences), Founding President of the World Public Forum “Dialogue of Civilizations“, visited the People’s Republic of China November 5-6, 2015. During the visit, Dr. Yakunin delivered a lecture at Beijing University and participated in the work of Beijing Forum 2015.
In the lecture at Beijing University, Vladimir Yakunin pointed out that inter-civilizational mutually advantageous cooperation today was coming to the fore and offering the only viable instruments that could be used for resolving and averting geopolitical conflicts.
– Today, we can vividly see from the examples of what is going in Ukraine, Iraq, Syria and other countries that the legitimacy of the format for resolving the conflict that is established by only one participant or one state can in no way be justified in the eyes of other participants in the said conflict.
It is quite apparent that outside the framework of a dialogue that takes into account the historically formed peculiarities of each of the sides in such a conflict, conditions are being created whereby the states and their alliances that wield greater economic and political clout are setting down their own rules, i.e., as if conducting “a dialogue” they are actually “calling the shots.”
From its inception, the WPF “Dialogue of Civilizations” has taken a stance of supporting a multi-polar vision of the world with its natural diversity and mutually respected cultures, and it has been consistently directing its efforts to work out the theory and practice of an inter-civilizational dialogue. And it is precisely such a stance that has enabled us to come still closer to understanding not an engaged and not an ideologized, but a real picture of the world.
Dr. Yakunin especially underscored the fact that it was precisely mutual respect and a desire to hear each other out that constituted one of the main reasons promoting a steadily expanding sphere of cooperation between the PRC and Russia.
– The dialogue-of-civilizations language has earned itself a firm niche in international discourse and is recognized as a viable instrument for conducting activity by intergovernmental organizations such as UNESCO.
Today there is a whole multitude of examples of the language of dialogue of civilizations being used by the leading statesmen of China, Russia and other countries.
Addressing the participants of the Beijing Forum as the key Guest Speaker Dr. Yakunin pointed out that the Beijing Forum and the WPF “Dialogue of Civilizations” had become one of the most authoritative platforms for advancing the principles of inter-civilizational cooperation and interaction.
– The world today is constantly being compelled to make a choice: to accept a neoliberal picture of the world and to transform into global society of consumption or to immerse into a chaos of world wars and economic cataclysms.
To all those who are not interested in making such a choice, we offer an alternative: – namely – a dialogue and a search for ways to achieve peaceful coexistence based on mutual respect and the recognition of different cultures.
The efficacy of such an approach has been confirmed by the results of studies and surveys conducted by professional societies, international and NGOs, independent platforms such as the Beijing Forum and the WPF “Dialogue of Civilizations.”
Vladimir Yakunin reported that an expertise study of ways to promote interstate cooperation to resolve pressing issues of global development would be undertaken by a new think-tank – the establishment of which was announced at the 13th Session of the World Public Forum “Dialogue of Civilizations that was held in October of this year (2015) on the Island of Rhodes (Greece).
Needless to say – this is to become a unique project to be carried out with the help of international specialists to promote an easing of tensions in the world.
One of the prime vectors in the work of this think-tank will be to hammer out practical recommendations for resolving international, inter-confessional and armed conflicts on the basis of the principles of a dialogue and mutual respect of cultures.
The full text of the Lecture by Vladimir Yakunin for the Peking University, November 5, 2015 is available here.