Interpreting At The Conference Of Religious Leaders Of Cyprus
For Freedom Of Faith And Religion

BRIEF PRESENTATION

The conference was organised by the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe in partnership with the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights and the Religious Track of the Cyprus Peace Process (RTCYPP).

The RTCYPP is a peace-building initiative under the aegis of the Swedish Embassy. Its objective is to promote dialogue and cooperation between the various religious communities in Cyprus and to make a positive and constructive contribution to peace talks on the Cyprus issue. Through this initiative religious leaders undertake to work together for human rights, peace and reconciliation. More information about the RTCYPP can be found at the following link: http://www.religioustrack.com/

 

THE CONFERENCE

The conference was held on 11 and 12 December 2018 and took the form of an educational seminar on freedom of faith and religion and human rights in general. The trainers consisted of legal advisers and experts from the OSCE and the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights. The trainees were religious leaders of Cyprus coming from all religious communities on the island. The aim of the seminar was to convey knowledge about how to defend religious freedom and the legal mechanisms for protecting it at international and local level.

Just some of the issues examined were:

  • International conventions on the protection of human rights
  • Freedom of faith and religion and how it is protected
  • Freedom of faith and religion in contrast with freedom of expression
  • What should states do to protect and facilitate religious freedom for all?
  • Protection of places of worship
  • The principle of equality, the principle of non-discrimination and religious freedom
  • The legal framework on the protection of religious freedom in Cyprus
  • The role of the Religious Track of the Cyprus Peace Process and its achievements to date, etc.

THE INTERPRETING

Simultaneous interpreting services were provided at the conference by a total of four interpreters. Two booths had been installed in the room: one for Greek and one for Turkish with two interpreters per booth. I worked in the Turkish booth interpreting primarily from English to Turkish and secondarily from Greek to Turkish when Turkish-speaking participants took the floor. The relay method was also used for talks in Turkish by colleagues in the Greek booth who coordinated with the Turkish booth to listen to our Greek translation and then interpret it in English.

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