The Baden Appeal

World Public Forum “Dialogue of Civilizations”, Austrian-Russian Friendship Society, Baden, Austria, October 23, 2015

The given Appeal which coincides with the 60th anniversary of the peaceful withdrawal of foreign troops from Austria and the Proclamation of Neutrality of the Republic of Austria has the support of non-governmental organizations of Russia, Austria and other countries.

We, the descendants of World War II participants, Russians and Austrians, and representatives of other nations, have gathered in Baden to celebrate a historical date – the 60th anniversary of the peaceful withdrawal of allied occupation forces from Austria and of the Proclamation of Neutrality of the Republic of Austria. We consider that this historical fact provides a firm groundwork for understanding the present and for realizing our responsibility before the future.

Today, 70 years after the end of World War II, the time has once again come to reassess the lessons of that war so as to not repeat the same grievous mistakes.

The world has found itself on the brink of total confrontation. The threats of military conflicts and terrorism are looming larger. Local conflicts in the Middle East, in countries of Africa and Latin America, as well as in Europe are growing in number, posing new challenges before mankind.

The very norms and principles of coexistence of civilizations and cultures today face the threat of destruction and annihilation. Combat reports have become commonplace in everyday life; society today seems to be getting used to war. We must not allow ourselves to tolerate armed conflicts. Military technologies today have reached the peak of their development, and therefore, we must realize what disastrous consequences they may lead to. Only goodwill and an understanding of the personal sense of responsibility before the future generations can help mankind to safeguard the world.

The participants of the Forum appeal to all parties concerned to return to the full force of the authorized prerogatives as set down in the Charter of the United Nations. We are fully aware of the complexity of the present-day geo-political conditions. No political, economic or ideological controversies must be settled by resorting to the use of armed force, for this can only lead to a full-scale global catastrophe. We sincerely hope that the world mass media will be able to provide an unbiased and responsible coverage of the events for the sake of fostering peace and mutual understanding between all nations.