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Bridge gap between cultures for peace, stability and development: United Nations
The UN agencies and various social groups observed the World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development on May 21. It was brought to the notice of the world community that three-quarters of the world's major conflicts have a cultural dimension. The UN has urged nations to bridge the gap between cultures is urgent and necessary for peace, stability and development.

According to the UN, the observance provides an opportunity to deepen our understanding of the values of cultural and support sustainable systems of governance for culture.

"Cultural diversity is a driving force of development, not only with respect to economic growth, but also as a means of leading a more fulfilling intellectual, emotional, moral and spiritual life. This is captured in the seven culture conventions, which provide a solid basis for the promotion of cultural diversity. Cultural diversity is thus an asset that is indispensable for poverty reduction and the achievement of sustainable development stated the UN's website.

At the same time, acceptance and recognition of cultural diversity - in particular through innovative use of media and Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) - are conducive to dialogue among civilizations and cultures, respect and mutual understanding.

"Worldwide, there is a growing wave of intolerance and restrictions imposed on the exercise of the right to freedom of religion or belief," said the Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief, Ahmed Shaheed.

The world community has been called upon to achieve a balanced flow of cultural goods and services and increase mobility of artists and cultural professionals; integrate culture in sustainable development frameworks; and promote human rights and fundamental freedoms.

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