15:21 GMT +321 February 2019
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    MOSCOW, July 15 (RIA Novosti) - Culture and the arts are no less important for the world's development these days than economics is, holds the world-famous Russian scientist Sergei Kapitsa. He expressed this view of his at a panel discussion at the UN information center in Moscow Thursday.

    The discussion took place today as part of the presentation of an annual Global Report on Human Potential Development, compiled by a team of independent experts at the UN Development Program's initiative. This year's report is devoted to cultural and artistic freedom in the present-day world. Its compilers believe that the topic resonates well in the modern day, with the idea of a global clash of civilization again raising the problem of how to overcome inter-cultural and inter-religious conflicts.

    The idea of engaging in dialogue, not war is becoming increasingly popular these days, Kapitsa emphasized in his concluding remarks.

    The report expands on other topical issues, such as the recognition of cultural and ethnical diversity, problems of feudalism and multi-cultural politics, demographics, migration, and human rights. Its aim is to bring the topic to the attention of the public and the powers that be, stimulating further discussion of related issues. This is especially relevant to multi-ethnic countries like Russia, the panelists pointed out.

    Also today, the report was presented to the international public at a ceremony in the Belgian capital, Brussels. Prime Minister of Belgium Guy Verhofstadt and UN Development Program Administrator Mark Malloch Brown attended the event.

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