Italy: Minister to present ‘charter of values’ to Muslims

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Italy’s interior minister Giuliano Amato will visit Rome’s mosque on Friday to present to Muslims a ‘Charter of Values for Citizenship and Integration’.“It is the first public presentation of this important document,” the director of Italy’s Islamic Cultural Centre, Abdullah Redouane, said in a statement. “Developed in consultation with various religious and civil society representatives, it establishes the principles for the harmonious integration in Italian society of non-Catholic communities.”

…The document, which has symbolic rather than legal value, is aimed at immigrants belonging to Muslim and other faiths. The government plans to distribute it in immigrants’ centres, schools, and places of worship in Italy.Italian authorities are also considering making the charter available in Italian embassies and consulates abroad, as well as in Italian offices that issue immigrants with permits of stay, residency and visas.

The charter was prepared by an interior ministry committee of experts following consultations with members of the Muslim, Protestant, Romanian and Russian Orthodox communities in Italy, the ItalianBishops Conference (CEI), immigrant groups and charities that assist immigrants.The idea of a charter outlining common values to be subscribed by Muslims was first launched by Amato in August 2006.

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