Letter: No offence meant

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The Independent Online
Sir: I read with interest the reaction of the Venerable Professor Dr Walpola Sri Rahula to the remarks concerning the Buddha made by the Prime Minister at the Blackpool conference (letter, 20 October). I am sure that John Major's remark had no religious connotation and was not intended to be in any way disparaging to a great world faith.

I can say this with some authority. As a member of the Advisory Committee of the Year of Inter-Religious Understanding and Co-operation, I attended the recent World Faiths Congress in Chicago, to which Mr Major as well as Douglas Hurd and John Smith sent messages. The political parties in Britain and their leaders disagree on many things but they are united in their respect for religion and their determination to foster inter-faith dialogue and understanding.

Yours faithfully,

SIGMUND STERNBERG

Chairman, Executive Committee

International Council of Christians and Jews

London, NW5

20 October

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