Mr. Abhimanyu Singh – UNESCO Director and Representative in Beijing

INTERNATIONAL DAY OF PEACE

MESSAGE

Mr. Abhimanyu Singh

Director and Representative

UNESCO Beijing Office

Every 21 September, we observe the International Day of Peace. This day is an invitation to humanity to join efforts to achieve a world free of war.

Building peace is at the core of the United Nations’ work. Since the very beginning of its existence, the UN has been committed to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, urging states to choose the diplomatic path to resolve their disputes, rather than taking up arms, choosing the path of peace instead of the path of violence.

But peace is not only the duty of states. It is the responsibility of all to participate in the building of a culture of Peace based on the universal values of respect for life, liberty, justice, solidarity, tolerance, human rights and equality between men and women”.

In recent decades, the world has paid a tremendous human price as a result of violent conflicts. Yet more than ever before, we are today in a position to reach a global partnership for peace. As states have agreed to walk together the path towards the Millennium Development Goals, war is one of the major challenges to overcome before achieving a world free of poverty, inequality and discrimination. Peace emerges as a fundamental right and a basic condition for human development and progress. The emergence of a global peace movement among civil society is also the expression of a universal desire to put an end to all kinds of violent conflict.

It is time now for the peoples of the world to take concrete steps to build peace through action, and not with passivity. This year, the United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki Moon, has made a global call for states to react to the tragedy of war by taking part in a joint concrete action: disarmament. A world without weapons is a world without war. Only a serious commitment of all states to engage in global negotiations will reduce the threat posed by weapons of mass destruction. Because at the end of the day, we only have one option, one choice. We must have peace!