Attalaki’s participates in the United Nations 16th session of the Forum on Minority Issues

The strategy of the Attalaki Organization is built on being both a national and international actor in order to protect the rights of religious minorities and uphold the right to religious freedom. It is therefore crucial to consistently participate in international, regional, and national meetings where our voice can be heard and influential. Based on this principle, our organization has been actively participating since 2020 in the United Nations Forum on Minorities in Geneva and in preliminary regional meetings, overseen by the Special Rapporteur on Minorities.

In this context, Attalaki Organization participated upon the invitation of the Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief in consultative workshops on freedom of thought. Specifically, the focus was on the topic of religious and belief minorities to contribute to the annual report of the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief for the years 2021 and 2023.

Statement of the Attalaki Organization

The president of the Attalaki Organization delivered his statement at the United Nations Forum on Minority Issues on December 1th, in the presence of diplomatic mission representatives, including the Tunisian delegation, and a significant number of international organizations and institutions concerned with the rights of religious, ethnic, and linguistic minorities. Additionally, there were representatives from two Tunisian organizations working on the rights of ethnic, national, and migrant minorities.

The statement of the Attalaki Organization was included in the agenda of the fourth session of the forum, titled “Positive Examples, Good Practices and Approaches, and Space for More.” The following is an excerpt from the statement.

We remain steadfast in our goals, continuing to work towards a more open, tolerant, and peaceful Tunisia. We are here to advocate for cooperation and commitment to supporting the rights of religious minorities, promoting the foundations of citizenship and coexistence. Therefore, we would like to present the following recommendations:

Call for further efforts to promote a citizenship culture that embraces diversity, achieved through educational reforms that prepare young people to accept the right to differences.

Work more towards achieving complete equality between males and females citizens, in line with the provisions of the 2022 Tunisian Constitution, by ensuring the rights of Evangelical Christians and Baha’is in Tunisia to have places of worship and burial sites.» See the full statement here

Friendly conversations

The presence of the head of the Attalaki Organization was significant, as it provided him with the opportunity to meet several individuals prior to delivering his statement at the forum. Within this context, he engaged with Former Special Rapporteur on minority issues, Mr. Fernand de Varennes. Additionally, the organization’s president held an extensive meeting with Mr. Ramzi Louati, Counsellor Permanent Mission of The Republic of Tunisia to the United Nations, and other activists in the field of minorities and religious freedom.

The discussions, particularly with the representative of the Tunisian mission in Geneva, revolved around the work of the Attalaki organization and the status of religious minorities on legal and social levels.

The mission representative affirmed that the Tunisian state is open to dialogue to enhance the rights of these minorities, emphasizing, however, that such efforts should not rely on Western support. Nevertheless, the organization’s head requested the Tunisian representative to convey our recommendations to the government, urging the realization of fair equality among citizens as outlined in the Tunisian constitution.

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