Lisbon, Portugal—UPF representatives met with the Religious Freedom Commission president to discuss the upcoming launch in Portugal of IAPD.
The meeting followed UPF participation in an RFC colloquium in November 2018. At that time, UPF representatives left printed materials and the UPF founder’s biography for the RFC president, Dr. Vera Jardim.
UPF later requested a meeting with Dr. Jardim, who is also a former minister of justice.
Having received a positive response, the UPF national president asked the national president of Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (FFWPU), an affiliated organization, to accompany him to the meeting, which took place on January 21, 2019 – one day after World Religion Day.
This purpose of the meeting was to request support for the inauguration in Portugal of the Interreligious Association for Peace and Development (IAPD), a UPF initiative. UPF hoped to win the support of the RFC president and also the national religious denominations that are associated with this state commission.
To prepare for the meeting, UPF sent selected reports from the UPF international website, along with a link to pictures from the April 2018 inauguration in Portugal of the International Association of Parliamentarians for Peace (IAPP), another UPF initiative.
The meeting was very positive, and the UPF and FFWPU representatives explained about the vision and activities of UPF and affiliated organizations. Dr. Jardim explained that the RFC, as an impartial state institution, cannot directly support UPF; however, he promised that in the next internal meeting of RFC he would ask the other members what they could do to help.
He expressed his regrets that he would not be able to attend the UPF World Summit in Korea in February, due to his age, but said he hoped that RFC would be represented in future UPF events.
It was a very important step in promoting UPF and in preparing for a successful IAPD inauguration in Portugal.