HRH Prince El Hassan bin Talal on Saturday was presented with the Roosevelt Foundation Four Freedoms Award Freedom of Worship Medal in Middleburg in the south-west of the Netherlands.
The Medal was presented to HRH by James Roosevelt Jr., grandson of President Roosevelt, in recognition of his longstanding commitment to the improvement of mutual understanding between the Islamic and Western worlds, and enhancing dialogue between Muslims, Christians and Jews.
HRH was accompanied to the presentation by HRH Princess Sarvath El Hassan. Their Majesties King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands, HRH Princess Beatrix and the Prime Minister of the Netherlands, Mr Mark Rutte, also attended the event.
Presenting the Medal to Prince El Hassan, James Roosevelt Jr. said: “Throughout all of [your] efforts you have remained steadfast to your belief that we must enter into a dialogue between ourselves and the other, ‘for we have to comprehend before we move to understanding.’ You have also said that the road to understanding is sometimes long and difficult, but we should not let this discourage us…”
“Your dedication to religious tolerance and the fundamental right of each person to worship God in his own way has helped advance FDR’s Four Freedoms and for this we thank and honour you today.”
Accepting the Medal, Prince El Hassan said: “Pope Francis is visiting the Holy Land almost as we speak. In that Land, Jews, Christians and Muslims have shared heritage from millennia.”
“The Holy Qur’an says ‘we, therefore, provide with one another in doing good works’ (2:148). The road is long. But we cannot afford not to commit ourselves. Where there is faith, there is hope. And I would like to think of a patrimony for all of humanity. None better than Jerusalem which could, and indeed could not, become a centre, not for monologue for the need for dialogue, but for conversation in a civilised framework for disagreement.”
“When will we revisit our texts, heritage and history and when will our neighbor revisit his or her texts, heritage or history so we can speak of developing a shared ethic of human solidarity.”
“I think that it is time to bear in mind that until human dignity is at the centre of the construct of a new humanitarian architecture, it is impossible to think about the stabilization of populations on our planet”
“The correlation between justice, human dignity and sustainability is important. We can only be resilient in as much as we recognise promoting equities both economic and social on the one side and ethical on the other.”
The Four Freedoms Awards are presented each year to men and women whose achievements have demonstrated a commitment to the principles that President Roosevelt declared in his speech to Congress on 6 January 1941: freedom of speech and expression; freedom of worship; freedom from want; and, freedom from fear.
Picture courtesy of Stanowicki Fotografie