The First Minster addressed a dinner of the Interfaith Forum on Monday night (16 November), which he set up following the 9/11 atrocities with backing from all the political parties and Christian, Hindu, Jewish, Muslim, Sikh and Baha’i leaders in Wales. It will be his last meeting with the Forum as First Minister and the dinner also marks the start of the first UK Interfaith Week.
The First Minister said:
“We came together after 9/11 to discuss a problem which confronts everyone in Wales – whatever their faith or ethnic origin. It was the first time this had happened and it was a landmark in Welsh history.
“The Interfaith Forum was established to build a bridge between the world of politics and faith communities and we have worked together in a spirit of unity and co-operation to ensure that people in Wales can lead their daily lives without fear of abuse and violence.
“The Forum has enabled people of different creeds and races to come together and build a country where the chapel, the mosque and the temple all co-exist in peace and harmony. We can show the world and our own citizens that we have laid the foundations for a modern, culturally diverse and more tolerant Wales. But it is not just about tolerating each other, it is about learning from each other and working together to build a better tomorrow. Our message is a very clear one. No matter what happens in the turbulent world outside, we won’t let anything divide us here in Wales.”
17 November 2009