The United Nations General Assembly, meeting in New York on Monday, adopted President Michel Aoun’s proposal to set up the Academy for Human Encounters and Dialogue in Lebanon. Aoun's proposal gained 165 votes, while only two countries voted against this project, Israel and the United States.
The Head of State, President General Aoun, reacted happily, welcoming the vote that "makes Lebanon moves forward to achieve this initiative, which contributes to the establishment of the language of dialogue and renounces violence and extremism."
In addition to that, U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres had expressed the U.N.'s support to the proposal.
Aoun proposed the candidacy of Lebanon to host this UN body, in a speech at the UN forum in New York last year. "Our world suffers today from a crisis of extremism and fanaticism, manifesting itself in the rejection of the different "other", the rejection of their culture, religion, color and civilization, the rejection of their very existence in absolute; this crisis is likely to aggravate, and no State is any longer safe from it, with all the devastating effects it has on the societies and States because it causes their implosion."
He continued, "With its plural society where Christians and Muslims live together, to govern and share the administration, with the expertise of its citizens spread all over the globe, and with what it stands for as the essence of the civilizations and cultures it represents, and which it has embraced throughout the eras, Lebanon is considered exemplary to establish therein an international academy to disseminate these values, the "Human Academy for Encounter and Dialogue."
"From this podium, I launched last year an initiative to make Lebanon an international center for the dialogue of religions, cultures, and races, and we aspire to see this initiative materialize today with a multilateral convention to establish the Academy in Lebanon, serving as an international project for permanent gathering and dialogue, and the promotion of the spirit of coexistence, in line with the objectives of the United Nations and the adoption of preventive diplomacy to avoid conflicts," he asserted.