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Statements by the WCC general secretary

Public statements and comments on current events by the general secretary of the World Council of Churches
Title EffectiveDate Description
WCC expresses grave concern for Rohingya people in Myanmar 14 September 2017 The World Council of Churches (WCC) expresses its concern about the situation of the Rohingya people and the circumstances in Rakhine state that have forced hundreds of thousands to flee their homes and country. According to UN and reputable media reports, some 379,000 Rohingya people have sought refuge in Bangladesh since 25 August, fleeing violence in Myanmar's Rakhine state.
WCC reaction to fresh sanctions against DPRK 09 August 2017 The World Council of Churches (WCC) believes that the situation on the Korean peninsula fully warrants the serious and sustained attention of the international community. There is no other geographic context in which the risk of regionally and globally catastrophic conflict is greater, and no point in recent history when tensions in the region have been higher. It is of critical and urgent necessity that the risks of conflict be reduced, not heightened.
Joint Communique, Muslim Council of Elders and World Council of Churches 27 April 2017 Joint Communique issued by the delegations representing the Muslim Council of Elders and the World Council of Churches at the meeting held 26 April 2017, Cairo, Egypt.
Statement on Peace and Reunification of the Korean Peninsula 12 April 2017 The World Council of Churches (WCC) joins the National Council of Churches in [South] Korea (NCCK) in expressing grave concern at the re-deployment of the USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier group to the seas surrounding the Korean peninsula. In a context of already heightened tensions - especially in the midst of the ongoing joint US and South Korean Foal Eagle-Key Resolve military exercises and the steps being taken to deploy the US missile defence system THAAD in South Korea, and North Korean threats of a nuclear response - this constitutes a further escalation of military confrontation in the region.
Statement on attack in the Idlib Governance of Syria 06 April 2017 Statemtent by WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit on attack in the Idlib Governance of Syria, April 2017.
Statement on detention and deportation of WCC associate general secretary 06 December 2016 Statement on detention and deportation of WCC associate general secretary at Ben Gurion International Airport on 5 December 2016.
Statement on the current situation in Aleppo, Syria 05 December 2016 Statement on the current situation in Aleppo, Syria, by Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, 4 December, 2016.
Statement by general secretaries Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit (WCC) and Jim Winkler (NCCCUSA) 15 September 2016 Statement by general secretaries Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit (World Council of Churches) and Jim Winkler (National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA) on NCC/WCC Consultation on the Holy Land, 14 September, 2016
Statement on events at Ben Gurion International Airport, 29 April-2 May 2016 09 May 2016 After traveling to Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv for a climate justice meeting, WCC staff and partners were detained or deported in a manner that WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit terms both unprecedented and intolerable.
Air strike on Syrian refugee camp 06 May 2016 The Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit condemns the air strike targetting the Kammouneh Syrian refugee camp, which is reported to have killed at least 28 people.
Meeting of Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill for unity and peace 12 February 2016 Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit welcomes the meeting between Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill in Cuba as an historic ecumenical event, and very timely in the context of the conflicts and crises currently causing so much suffering in the world.
Statement calling for an end to foreign military interventions in Syria 12 October 2015 WCC statement calling for an end to foreign military interventions in Syria
Statement on agreement between Colombian government and FARC 24 September 2015 Statement by WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit on the announcement of an agreement between the Colombian government and the FARC revolutionary force .
Statement on refugees in Europe 04 September 2015 WCC statement on refugees in Europe, calling for responsibility for and support to the refugees in Europe.
Statement on killings in Kuwait, Tunisia and France 29 June 2015 Statement on killings in Kuwait, Tunisia and France, by WCC acting general secretary Georges Lemopoulos.
Statement on the Encyclical Laudato Si’ 18 June 2015 Statement by the WCC general secretary on the Encyclical Letter "Laudato Si’" of Pope Francis on care for our common home
Statement by WCC general secretary Olav Fykse Tveit on resumption of Cyprus talks 18 May 2015 The WCC and its member churches around the world warmly welcome the resumption on 15 May 2015 of negotiations between the Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades and the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci.
WCC and CCA call for urgent action in earthquake-hit Nepal 26 April 2015 The World Council of Churches and the Christian Conference of Asia issued a joint statement following the earthquake that struck Nepal on 25 April 2015.
Statement on xenophobic attacks in South Africa 24 April 2015 During recent days, we have seen numerous tragic expressions of the special vulnerability of migrants and migrant workers. The 28 Ethiopian migrant workers reportedly executed by ISIS in Libya, the hundreds of deaths on the Mediterranean Sea, and the xenophobic violence and killings of migrant workers in South Africa are only the most recent illustrations of the threats against people engaged in the simple and universal human search for a better life for themselves and their families – often driven to perilous risk by desperation, conflict and oppression in their home countries.
Ending extreme poverty: A moral and spiritual imperative 09 April 2015 Over 30 leaders from major world religions and heads of global faith-based organizations today launched a clarion call to action to end extreme poverty by 2030, a goal shared by the World Bank Group.
Statement condemning terror attack in Kenya 03 April 2015 The WCC has strongly condemned the terror attack on the campus of Garissa University in North East Kenya in a statement issued from the WCC headquarters in Geneva.
Statement condemning attacks on religious sites in West Bank and Jerusalem 27 February 2015 Statement from WCC acting general secretary Georges Lemopoulos condemning the recent attacks against a mosque in the West Bank and a Christian centre in Jerusalem.
Statement condemning attacks on Christians in Syria 25 February 2015 Statement condemning attacks and atrocities by the so-called “Islamic State” perpetrated against Assyrian Christians in Syria.
Statement on Ukraine ceasefire agreement 13 February 2015 Statement from Georges Lemopoulos, WCC acting general secretary, welcoming the ceasefire agreement for eastern Ukraine.
Statement on US-Cuba relations 18 December 2014 WCC general secretary Olav Fykse Tveit comments on positive developments in relations between Cuba and the USA announced on 17 December 2014.
Statement on Peshawar school massacre 17 December 2014 Following the massacre of dozens of students and staff in Peshawar on 16 December 2014, WCC general secretary Olav Fykse Tveit extended his sympathies.
Statement on Nigeria mosque attack 03 December 2014 Statement from the WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit following the attack on the Great Mosque of Kano in Nigeria on 28 November.
Statement on Jerusalem synagogue attack 18 November 2014 Statement from the WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit expressing concer over attack on Israeli worshippers at Jerusalem synagogue.
Statement about attacks on Nigerian churches 05 November 2014 WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit's statement expressing dismay over attacks on Nigerian churches.
Concern over Asia Bibi case 28 October 2014 Statement from the WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit over over recent decision on Asia Bibi case.
Statement on Gaza 22 July 2014 Expressing grave concern over the escalation of military operations in Gaza, the WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit calls for immediate cessation of hostilities in Gaza.
A tragic exodus of the Christian community from Mosul 21 July 2014 A tragic exodus of the Christian community from Mosul: Statement and call for solidarity from Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, WCC general secretary.
Concern over violence in Gaza 11 July 2014 WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit condemns attacks by the Israeli military on the civilian population in Gaza, as well as firing of rockets by militants from Gaza to Israel.
WCC-RABIIT joint statement on the bombings in Jos, Nigeria 21 May 2014 Joint statement from the WCC and the Royal Aal Al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought (RABIIT) on the bombings in Jos, Nigeria.
Palestinian Prisoners Day: A call to churches worldwide to pray and act for justice 17 April 2014 Issued by the WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, on 17 April 2014.
Public statement on the importance of bringing the world’s new Arms Trade Treaty into effect 02 April 2014 Public comment from the WCC general secretary on the importance of bringing the world’s new Arms Trade Treaty into effect, issued on 2 April.
Concern over Egypt court decision of death sentence for 529 people 28 March 2014 WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit expressing concern over court decision in Egypt, where around 529 people have been sentenced to death.
Comment on Iran nuclear agreement 27 November 2013 WCC general secretary's public comment on Iran nuclear agreement
OPCW Nobel Peace Prize 14 October 2013 Congratulations to the Nobel Peace Prize laureate of 2013, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons
Death of migrants in Italy shipwreck 04 October 2013 Statement from the World Council of Churches general secretary, Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit over the death of migrants in Italy shipwreck on 3 October.
68th anniversary of atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki 05 August 2013 Public comment by the WCC general secretary, Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit
NATO summit: Nuclear weapons in Europe 15 May 2012 Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit urges the NATO to “lead by example” and withdraw nuclear weapons still deployed in Europe.
Anniversary of the Fukushima nuclear disaster 11 March 2012 Tribute to the victims of Fukushima nuclear accident from the World Council of Churches general secretary
Statement ahead of COP17 in Durban 2011 23 November 2011 Ahead of the UN Conference on Climate Change in Durban, South Africa, 28 November - 10 December 2011 (UNFCCC COP17), the WCC general secretary, the Rev Dr Olav Fykse-Tveit, reiterates the WCC call for climate justice.
Ten years after 9/11 07 September 2011 Ten years after the 9 September 2001, when thousands of people from more than 90 countries were killed in a coordinated assault on targets in the United States, the WCC general secretary reflects on the legacy of pain, grief, disorder and enmity, and on the power and meaning to be found in supportive prayers and other expressions of compassion.
Statement on Syria 09 August 2011 Voicing an appeal for the renunciation of violence by all sides in ongoing political conflict in Syria, the general secretary of the World Council of Churches has stated, "it is particularly urgent that the army and government security agencies cease the indiscriminate use of force" against demonstrators, moving instead to protect all Syrian citizens' lives, dignity, human rights and fundamental freedoms.
Statement on Libya 05 May 2011 In a public statement issued 4 May 2011 in Geneva, Switzerland the general secretary of the World Council of Churches, Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, said that the power and political will being used in Libya to protect the safety and interests of the Libyan people «must be directed away from the use of armed force» and «channelled into negotiations to end the bloodshed» now consuming Libya.
Violence in Cote d'Ivoire 05 April 2011 In a public statement issued 5 April 2011 in Geneva, Switzerland the general secretary of the World Council of Churches, Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, expressed deep concern regarding the ongoing violence and killings of a large number of civilians in Cote d'Ivoire, including women and children, particularly in Duekoue and Abidjan.
Ratification of new START treaty 23 December 2010 Statement on the ratification by the US Senate of the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty between the United States and Russia
65th anniversary of 1st atomic bombings 05 August 2010 Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit on the anniversary of the nuclear bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki
US-Russia nuclear arms reduction treaty 08 April 2010 The Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit's comment on the signing of the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) by Presidents Medvedev and Obama in Prague, 8 April 2010.
Haiti's foreign debt 25 January 2010 In this statement, the WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit calls for the immediate and unconditional cancellation of Haiti's foreign debt.
Statement on Iraq 16 March 2007
International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, 21 March 2001 08 March 2001 Statement issued by Konrad Raiser
Joint statement on the occasion of the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination 19 March 1997 Issued jointly by Mr Jean Fischer, general secretary of the Conference of European Churches, the Rev. Dr Ishmael Noko, general secretary of the Lutheran World Federation, the Rev. Dr Milan Opocenski, general secretary of the World Alliance of Reformed Churches and the Rev. Dr Konrad Raiser of the World Council of Churches.