Tony Blair was Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1997-2007. He was the Labour Party’s longest-serving Prime Minister and the only leader to have taken the party to three consecutive general election victories. On a number of occasions, Mr Blair sent the UK Baháí community messages for the celebration of Naw-Rúz.
On 30 May 2008, Tony Blair launched the Tony Blair Faith Foundation as a vehicle for encouraging different faiths to join together in promoting respect and understanding, as well as working to tackle poverty. Reflecting Blair’s own faith, but not dedicated to any particular religion, the Foundation aims to “show how faith is a powerful force for good in the modern world.”
“I have a clear vision of a multi-cultural Britain – one which values the contribution made by each of our ethnic, cultural and faith communities. I am determined to see a truly dynamic society, in which people from different ethnic, cultural and religious backgrounds can live and work together, whilst retaining their distinctive identities, in an atmosphere of mutual respect and understanding.
British Baha’is make a significant contribution towards achieving this vision and we are a stronger, better country because of it. It is particularly important that we celebrate the contribution of the Baha’i faith to the stability and prosperity of British Society as a whole.
I am very much encouraged by the vision the Baha’i community demonstrates in recognising the power of interfaith dialogue and the importance of all citizens fulfilling their potential. Your community has a vibrancy which is well demonstrated by the recent opening of the Baha’i Gardens on Mount Carmel in Israel. It is an outstanding monument to your faith.”
21 March 2002
“In many ways, Bahá’ís embody the spirit of community cohesion that is so important to our society. The Bahá’í community, in its outlook on life and in its proactive work in the inter-faith, cohesion and anti-discrimination fields, show how much faith-based bodies can contribute to wider society, and the Government looks forward to continuing our good relationship.”
21 March, 2005
“I warmly commend all that the Baha’i community does for social cohesion and better inter-faith relations, which makes such a valuable contribution to our society. Your commitment to tackling discrimination and promoting our shared humanity is particularly important. I hope that this work will become increasingly well-known.”
21 March 2006
“The United Kingdom deeply values the presence of the Baha’i community and the unique contribution you make. The words of your founder, that “the earth is but one country, and mankind its citizens”, have perhaps an even greater resonance in 2007 than ever before. The universal challenges of climate change, and its potentially disastrous impact on millions of people across the globe, remind us forcefully that we are all fellow citizens of the world, all sharing in its destiny. As we confront these challenges I have no doubt that you, and your fellow Baha’is in other countries, have much to contribute to the debate and the pursuit of possible solutions, drawing on the tradition of working for social justice of which Baha’is can rightly be so proud.”
21 March 2007