Although a project on Intercultural education was launched in 2002, and although the main objectives of the Council of Europe have always been to foster mutual understanding and trust amongst people, it is in Warsaw in 2005 that the Heads of State and Government of the Council of Europe endorsed intercultural dialogue as a means of ensuring that the diversity of European cultures becomes a source of mutual enrichment.

In their Action Plan, they stated that:

[t]he Council of Europe will enhance all opportunities for the training of educators, in the fields of education for democratic citizenship, human rights, history and intercultural education 

and added the following:

Convinced that dialogue between cultures is also fostered by accurate understanding of history, we endorse the Council of Europe’s work in history teaching and related projects, and decide to intensify our efforts in this direction. We encourage more active involvement of civil society in this work.

The Faro Declaration

The Declaration on the Council of Europe’s Strategy for Developing Intercultural Dialogue, adopted at the closing conference for the 50th anniversary of the European Cultural Convention (in Faro, Portugal, in October 2005)

  • stresses the need to further develop knowledge and awareness of history, cultures, arts and religions, and to highlight elements illustrating both the historical and the contemporary influence of cultures and civilisations on each other, as well as cultural cross-fertilisation
  • and advocates the launch of a Council of Europe “White paper on integrated policies for the management of cultural diversity through intercultural dialogue and conflict prevention”.

Since then, the promotion of intercultural dialogue has been a major political priority of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe and is integrated in all working areas of the Council of Europe, including history teaching through the project "The Image of the Other in History Teaching".