Blog

Rev. Dr Hans Ucko

Whenever I hear words such as “violent extremism”, it is as if I am drained and a feeling of fatigue overpowers me. The words conjure up images of dead and wounded children and young people. Children as victims. There is Alan Kurdî, the little boy found drowned on the beach in Turkey. There is Omran Daqneesh, the little boy covered in dust in the ambulance in Aleppo wiping away blood from his face. The first victims of war and conflict are children. Political and religious rhetoric advocating violence is attracting and motivating individuals or groups but there is nothing that could justify violence against children.

By Ilham Nasser, Ph.D.


My trip to Cape Town was an eye opening experience on many fronts. I gained new knowledge on the political atmosphere and transformation in South Africa, it’s socio economic conditions, the education system and interfaith initiatives. The trip was enriching and energizing to someone like me who has roots in the Middle East and has a great amount of despair about what is going on there. The occupation of Palestine, and the wars in Syria, and Yemen are cases in point. I travelled to Cape Town to attend a meeting of the Interfaith Council on Ethics for Children Council a project of Arigatou International. The highlight of my trip was when our host, Dr. Imam Rashied Omar organized a panel presentation and roundtable discussion with educators, and teachers who work in areas of interfaith and intercultural education as part of the Council meeting.

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