Tag Archives: East Asia

International Cities of Peace in China


Messages from the newsletter and Facebook page of Inernational Cities of Peace

In mid-December this year, I will be traveling to Nanjing, China for the third time in less than two years. The alliance between our organization and the two Peace Institutes in that City of Peace (our 169th and the first in China) are growing stronger. The mission for this trip is to determine criteria for more Cities of Peace in Southeast Asia. The trip is being funded by the UNESCO Chair on Peace Studies and the Memorial Hall for Victims of the Nanjing Massacre.

image from the video

December 20

REPORT #3 FROM CHINA. Kids and families! People are the same everywhere! Life went on as usual in Nanjing while I was awash in interviews focusing on the rising peace movement in China. CCTV with a billion viewers, Nanjing local TV with 10 million audience, Jaingsu Province TV with hundreds of millions highlighted peace messages, culminating in the Peace Commemoration which reached the entire Chinese population.

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Questions for this article:

How can culture of peace be developed at the municipal level?

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The photos of people in this Report are wonderful but the VIDEO LINKED AT THE END OF THIS POSTING is the first in a series of NANJING DIALOGUES FOR PEACE, where I was hosted by UNESCO Peace Chair, Professor Liu Cheng. The video is long, over 45 minutes but it focuses on International Cities of Peace as a platform for peace studies and global change. The attention to peace in China is made possible by the growth and global energy of our network — due to you, the individual City leaders, groups, and friends around the world. Thanks to everyone! Onward and upward. Here is the Dialogue link: https://youtu.be/Yi-sq2rHZaI.

 December 17

FIRST REPORT FROM CHINA: Every person involved with International Cities of Peace (Leaders, the Board, U.N. Reps, donors, organizers, partners, etc.) can be heartened this morning. In substantial part due to our City of Peace efforts — our Chinese partners have truly told me — Nanjing and China itself is making a huge transition. From a focus on mourning the victims of war (which is an honorable action), they are investing in actions focused on peace building and promotions that will shape behaviors that emphasize peace now and into the future. In Nanjing, I saw it with my own eyes. Deep challenges, yes, but transitions are evident. I will tell more as the week goes on. Thanks to all. This is important work we all share. I photographed these billboards around Nanjing. Peace is everywhere for all to see and inspire. Amazing to be honored for our work.

Pope Francis’ declaration in Hiroshima marks another historic step in the fight for the total elimination of nuclear weapons


A press release from 7ZEIZH

Pope Francis’ declaration in Hiroshima is another historic step in the fight for the total elimination of nuclear weapons, Roland Nivet and Edith Boulanger, national co-spokespersons of Mouvement de la Paix, have jointly declared.

The declaration of Pope Francis in Hiroshima on November 23, 2019 in which he states that “the use of atomic energy for military purposes is a crime” and that “a world without nuclear weapons is possible and necessary” and finally that “The time has come to renounce nuclear weapons and build a collective and concerted peace” is another historic step in the struggle for the total elimination of nuclear weapons. In his time the academician Jean Rostand speaking of the atomic weapon said “to prepare a crime it is already a crime”.

(Click here for the French version of this article.)

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Question related to this article:

Can we abolish all nuclear weapons?

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Six months into the beginning of the work of the review conference of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) at the UN in May 2020 which will bring together all states, we can only welcome the fact that the Pope also calls “To support all international instruments of nuclear disarmament, including the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and the Nuclear Weapons Banning Treaty” adopted at the United Nations on 7 July 2017.

Pope Francis’ proposal for the money devoted to these works of death to be devoted to human development and the struggle for the climate corresponds to the slogan adopted by the 160 or so organizations of the Collective On the Move for Peace, which called for September 21 (International Day of Peace) to march “for peace, climate, social justice and nuclear disarmament”.

All peace-loving people, regardless of their ideological, religious, trade union or political beliefs or affiliations, will, we believe, find an additional reason to act for a world without nuclear weapons.

A few days ago we sent a letter to all French Parliamentarians proposing the adoption, as part of the preparation of the Budget 2020 of France, an amendment to this Finance Act to freeze the credits planned in 2020 to the modernization of nuclear weapons.

While the majority of the government has voted to double the funds earmarked for atomic weapons, we hope that the Pope’s statement will perhaps cause them to reflect and take into consideration our amendment proposal.

Pope Francis Calls Nuclear Weapons Immoral as Catholic Activists Face Jail For U.S. Nuke Base Action


An article from Democracy Now (licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License).

Over the weekend, Pope Francis visited Hiroshima and Nagasaki, where the United States dropped the first atomic bombs in 1945, killing more than 200,000 people. Pope Francis said, “A world without nuclear weapons is possible and necessary.” The leader of the Cathoilc Church met with survivors of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings and declared the possession of nuclear weapons to be immoral. The Pope’s visit comes as a group of seven Catholic peace activists are awaiting sentencing for breaking into the Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base in Georgia on April 4, 2018. The activists, known as the Kings Bay Plowshares 7, were recently convicted of three felony counts and a misdemeanor charge for entering the base armed with hammers, crime scene tape and baby bottles containing their own blood.

Video of interview

We speak with Martha Hennessy, one of the Kings Bay Plowshares 7. She is the granddaughter of Dorothy Day, the founder of the Catholic Worker movement. We are also joined by Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg. His most recent book is titled, “The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner.” Daniel Ellsberg was blocked from testifying in the recent trial of the Kings Bay Plowshares 7.

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

AMY GOODMAN: This is Democracy Now!. I’m Amy Goodman. “A world without nuclear weapons is possible and necessary.” Those were the words of Pope Francis this weekend as he visited Hiroshima and Nagasaki where the U.S. dropped the first atomic bombs in the world.—it was 1945—killing over 200,000 people. Pope Francis met with survivors of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings and declared the possession of nuclear weapons to be immoral. In Hiroshima, Pope Francis spoke at the city’s Peace Memorial Park.

POPE FRANCIS: [translated] The use of atomic energy for the purpose of war is today more than ever a crime not only against the dignity of human beings, but against any possible future for our common home. The use of atomic energy for the purpose of war is immoral, just as the possessing of nuclear weapons is immoral, as I already said two years ago. We will be judged by this. Future generations will rise to condemn our failure if we spoke of peace but did not act to bring it about among the peoples of the earth. How can we speak of peace even as we build terrifying new weapons of war? How can we speak of peace even as we justify illegitimate actions by speeches filled with discrimination and hate?

AMY GOODMAN: The Pope’s visit to Hiroshima and Nagasaki comes as a group of seven Catholic peace activists are awaiting sentencing for breaking into the Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base in Georgia. It was April 4th, 2018. The activists, known as the Kings Bay Plowshares 7, who broke in on the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, were recently convicted of three felony counts and a misdemeanor charge for entering the base armed with hammers, crime scene tape and baby bottles containing their own blood. They also carried an indictment charging the U.S. government with crimes against peace. The Kings Bay Naval Base is home to at least six nuclear ballistic missile submarines, each of which carries 20 Trident thermonuclear weapons. The activists said they were following the prophet Isaiah’s command to “beat swords into plowshares.”

We are joined now by two guests. Martha Hennessy is with us in New York, one of the Kings Bay Plowshares 7, granddaughter of Dorothy Day, the founder of the Catholic Worker Movement. And joining us from Berkeley, California, Pentagon paper whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg, his most recent book, The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner. Dan Ellsberg was blocked from testifying in the recent trial of the Kings Bay Plowshares 7. We welcome you both to Democracy Now! Martha, can you respond to Pope Francis going to Hiroshima, Nagasaki and saying that nuclear weapons are immoral?

MARTHA HENNESSY: Thank you, Amy. It’s good to be here. I think that we have before us a remarkable Pope, and he is certainly exhausting himself with this work of peacemaking and global solidarity-building. He is unequivocally speaking out against nuclear weapons. He does support the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. My heart rejoices to hear his words and to see him. He is very purposefully going to places that—places of sin and sorrow and grief and pain. He calls it a sacramental act to go to the sites. I feel complete affirmation in what he is trying to do with regards to our own action of walking onto the Naval Submarine Base in Kings Bay.

AMY GOODMAN: Has he weighed in on your trial or your sentencing?

MARTHA HENNESSY: I don’t think so. Not publicly, verbally, but he knows what is happening.

AMY GOODMAN: So describe what you did very briefly. You have been on before and described it. But also the sentence that you face. You were found guilty.

MARTHA HENNESSY: Yes, we were convicted, found guilty on all counts, October 24th.

AMY GOODMAN: And those counts were?

MARTHA HENNESSY: Conspiracy, depredation of governmental property, destruction of Naval property and trespass. And we are awaiting sentencing. We are facing—the initial threat was 20 years in prison, and I believe that the prosecution is now calling for 18 to 24 months. The judge has a reputation of ruling perhaps in the middle of the road. But I expect that I will receive a minimum of one year in federal prison.

AMY GOODMAN: I wanted to go back to Pope Francis Sunday holding a holy mass for over 30,000 Catholics at the Nagasaki Stadium in Japan.

POPE FRANCIS: [translated] In the belief that a world without nuclear weapons is possible and necessary, I ask political leaders not to forget that these do not defend us from threats to national and international security of our time. We need to consider the catastrophic impact of their use from a humanitarian and environmental point of view, renouncing to strengthen a climate of fear, mistrust and hostility fueled by nuclear doctrines.

No one can be indifferent to the pain of millions of men and women who still today continue to affect our consciences. No one can be deaf to the cry of the brother who calls from his womb. No one can be blind to the ruins of a culture incapable of dialogue.

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Question related to this article:

Can we abolish all nuclear weapons?

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AMY GOODMAN: That’s Pope Francis this weekend in Nagasaki, Japan. On August 9th, 1945, the U.S. dropped the second U.S. atomic bomb in the world on Nagasaki. Three days before, August 6, 1945, they dropped the first on Hiroshima. As you protest nuclear weapons, Martha Hennessy, at the Kings Bay Naval Base, you left a copy of Daniel Ellsberg’s book The Doomsday Machine on the site of your action. Why?

MARTHA HENNESSY: Daniel Ellsberg has brought us such critical information. The author of the Pentagon Papers releasing the scandal and the trauma of what the Vietnam War was and the other half of his story laid buried for many years regarding the nuclear arsenal. He was an insider who had to do research on understanding what the nuclear chain of command was for pressing the button, and he found out it was rather chaotic. It was unclear to the president. There were many people who actually had the capacity to press the nuclear button. And we felt the necessity of sharing his book and we wanted the people working at the base to read the book and to understand the history here.

AMY GOODMAN: Well, Dan Ellsberg is joining us from the University of California, Berkeley, who wrote The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner. Can you respond to this historic trip of Pope Francis to Hiroshima, Nagasaki, calling nuclear weapons illegal? This was your world. This was your work, Dan Ellsberg, as a high-level Pentagon and RAND Corporation official. The Plowshares 7 left your book at the site at Kings Bay. You attempted to testify at their trial. You were blocked. What would you have said?

DANIEL ELLSBERG: I believe that actions like theirs are necessary to moving this world away from nuclear weapons, as the Pope has called for. Many other approaches have been tried in the last 50 years and they have essentially failed. There is a major reason that runs through that history, and that is that we are, on the one hand, obliged by treaty, the highest law of the land, a ratified treaty, the Non-Proliferation Treaty, Article VI, to move in good-faith negotiations—in particular with what was in the Soviet Union, now Russia, but with all nuclear weapons states—for the effective elimination of all nuclear weapons. The U.S. has not considered negotiating for that goal for one minute of that half century. There has never been a minute of good faith, of intent to carry out Article Six.

So when the Pope Francis now, yesterday, makes this—puts—urges the same goal on the U.S. and all other countries, nuclear weapons states, it might seem redundant but it isn’t. He is saying that this should be taken seriously and he could not be more right. And of course, he’s a powerful voice in the world. I hope that—he has obviously undergone a considerable education on this, as have the people in Plowshares movement. And if he can pass that requirement on and its urgency to the bishops throughout the world, it will I am sure create conditions in which our own representatives will call on our executive branch at last to carry out what they are obliged to do in the treaty and what they have never done, and that is to negotiate seriously moving toward the elimination of nuclear weapons, a verifiable mutual elimination of nuclear weapons.

AMY GOODMAN: Martha, The New Yorker Magazine wrote a piece. The headline was The Pope and Catholic Radicals Come Together Against Nuclear Weapons.

MARTHA HENNESSY: Pretty significant. I would like to believe that Dorothy Day herself, my grandmother, very much influenced the U.S. Catholic Church in terms of holding on to the concept of peace and letting the U.S. bishops know how she felt about war. She opposed every war that occurred in her lifetime. It’s grand to see the Pope speaking out now. He is a Pope after the heart of Dorothy Day.
We can’t express our gratitude to people enough, to people like Dan Ellsberg and the many of those who have come before us—the Berrigan Brothers—all in their efforts—the Pope has said it’s not enough to simply speak out against nuclear weapons; we must act. We must walk. We walked onto that base. We need to raise a voice very clearly and even be willing to put our bodies on the line to help the world to understand that the malevolence, the secrecy, the lack of democracy from beginning to end with this nuclear arsenal, the production, the maintaining, the threat of using—it’s the greatest evil in the world that any of us can face in our lifetimes.

AMY GOODMAN: One of your sister protesters, Liz McAlister, the widow of Philip Berrigan, was one of the Plowshares 7. Last week, she just celebrated her 80th birthday. She, too, faces these charges and was in prison for a year and a half as she awaited the trial. Dan, what would you have said to the jury?

DANIEL ELLSBERG: What did I expect of the jury?

AMY GOODMAN: What would you have said? And why were you blocked?

DANIEL ELLSBERG: The judge refused to allow a defense of necessity or justification, a very old principle in English common law and American common law that an act under which under some circumstances or many circumstances would be illegal, like blocking a roadway, perhaps stealing a life preserver to throw it to somebody who was drowning, taking it from a nearby boat—an act like that that is meant as necessary to prevent an imminent greater evil, the death of someone, various things, would be legal. Not merely extenuating circumstances in a sense, but would actually be legal because it was the right thing to do under these circumstances. I am convinced from my own experience that that’s true of the acts here.

I would never have thought of risking prison for 115 years, which Nixon had in mind for me or indicted me for, in order to put out the Pentagon Papers, without the immediate example of people, all of whom had been influenced by Dorothy Day, among others, by the Berrigans, by Gandhi, by Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks.
I was led by those people to study those works and then I saw people enacting that in their own lives, risking prison to make the strongest possible case—that there was an emergency, in this case; in that case, to end the Vietnam War—and that it took special acts of conscience to wake people up to that necessity and get them to join in the protest. I felt the power of that act on my own life.

And I would not have thought of doing an act, copying these papers and giving them to the newspapers, without that example. They put in my head the question, “What can I do to help end this war now that I’m ready to go to prison, as they were?” And the question that really needs to be asked much more generally is by people confronting climate change, confronting the nuclear emergency, confronting wrongful wars like Yemen is, “Am I doing enough? Am I doing all that I could, including considering acts that would involve personal cost for me or some risks to my career?” Very few people can answer that comfortably in the notion that there’s really nothing more they can do.

So acts like this have proven in the women’s right to vote, in the unionization of autoworkers, for example, and other workers, in civil rights and gay rights—all of these things were proved essential—part—not all, but part of the movement—to regain these rights and ensure them, that people were willing to challenge laws that were in the way of those rights.

AMY GOODMAN: Finally, Martha Hennessy, your grandmother Dorothy Day is in the process of beatification and canonization on the way to becoming a saint in the Catholic Church?


AMY GOODMAN: Well, I want to thank you both for being with us. Martha Hennessy, when is your sentencing?

MARTHA HENNESSY: We don’t even have a date yet. Sixty to 90 days is what she said to us, the judge said, on October 24th. And we’re processing—we’re doing some motion filing. And so it takes time. And meanwhile, we just don’t know.

APAC Summit urges nations to maintain world peace


An article by Khorn Savi from the Phnom Penh Post

A joint declaration of the 2019 Asia-Pacific Summit in Phnom Penh urged countries around the world to address climate change and put aside disputes to ensure global peace.

The declaration which was issued on Tuesday evening also mentioned the necessity to focus more on issues concerning women, families and youths.

“The summit [reached a consensus] that there are growing threats to global peace and security because of social, political and economic causes.

“It also calls upon the world to acknowledge the importance of tolerance, mutual understanding, the role of civil societies, solution to disputes and world peace.

“Besides, the media’s role in creating awareness on climate change and the importance of global peace should be recognised,” said the declaration.
Additionally, the joint declaration said that long-lasting peace and happiness in society are the contributory factors of sustainable development.

“More resources should be used to address issues on women, such as domestic violence, workplace discrimination, limited education and opportunities [to promote gender equality]. Also, youths should be taking up more leadership responsibilities to play a significant role in building a culture of peace.

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Question related to this article:

How can we develop the institutional framework for a culture of peace?

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“Living in the interest of others is an effective means to overcome the divisive relations of humans and can pave the way for reconciliation to create one united global family.

“In this sense, the summit emphasised the need to strengthen unilateral ties between countries in the Asia-Pacific so that the region can achieve its true potential in the international stage,” said the declaration.

At the opening ceremony of the Asia-Pacific Summit on Tuesday, Prime Minister Hun Sen said: “As a [leader of the] Cambodian government, I would like to encourage the leadership of the government, civil societies and the private institutions to continue collaboration on addressing global issues.

“These issues include extremist activities, climate change, cross-border crimes and human trafficking, cybersecurity, as well as economic, social, and gender inequality.”

Social analyst Meas Nee said the world is concerned with the confrontation between superpower countries.

“More countries have raised their concerns about a possible repeat of a political bloc divide similar to that of the Cold War era as a result of the confrontation,” he said.

The concern should be given more emphasis to urge superpower countries to stop the confrontation and work towards reconciliation for global peace.

“Without a collective voice, the confrontation can escalate into a “third world war” which would be the greatest scourge for mankind,” Nee said.

Leaders of 72 municipalities attend Mayors for Peace assembly in Tokyo


An article from The Mainichi

A general assembly of Mayors for Peace’s domestic member cities was held here [in Tokyo] on Oct. 24, with leaders and senior officials of 72 municipalities across Japan in attendance.

Kunitachi Mayor Kazuo Nagami explains his city’s ideas on the definition of peace during a general assembly of Mayors for Peace’s domestic member cities, in Kunitachi, Tokyo, on Oct. 24, 2019. (Mainichi/Masamitsu Kurokawa)

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Questions for this article:

How can culture of peace be developed at the municipal level?

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Mayors for Peace is an international nongovernmental organization seeking a world without nuclear weapons through close collaboration among its member cities. The meeting, held in the Tokyo suburban city of Kunitachi, was the ninth of its kind and the first to be held in the capital.

In an opening speech, Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui, who serves as president of Mayors for Peace, pointed out that “home country-first” principles are casting a shadow over the world. “We would like to consider through this meeting how we can foster a ‘culture of peace’ and act on this cause as basic municipalities tasked with protecting the safety of citizens,” he said.

Kunitachi Mayor Kazuo Nagami stated, “We adopted a peace city declaration in 2000. We’d like to have in-depth discussions on the missions of mayors for peacebuilding.”

During the conference, the city of Kunitachi introduced its efforts to pass down the memories of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the Tokyo Air Raids in the final days of World War II by training some 30 people from the postwar generation as storytellers.

According to the website of the Mayors for Peace’s secretariat and other sources, the NGO currently has 1,732 member municipalities in Japan, which account for more than 99% of all municipalities across the nation.

The meeting is set to adopt a statement on Oct. 25 calling for the Japanese government to boost efforts toward nuclear weapons abolition.

Asian church leaders call for greater interfaith cooperation


An article from Lutheran World

The Asia Church Leadership Conference (ACLC) has concluded in Indonesia with a call to all churches to work more closely together with other faith communities to promote urgent issues such as gender justice, environmental protection and care for the poor and needy.

Indonesian church leaders meet with the President of the Republic’s special envoy on interfaith relations and intercultural dialogue, Professor Syafiq Mughni (center). Photo: LWF/Isaac Henry

Pastors and lay people from across the region have been meeting with local Lutheran leaders in the North Sumatra town of Pematang Siantar to discuss the theme ‘Pursuing peace through interfaith relations in Asia’. It was preceded by an encounter of Asian women leaders and a meeting of the Global Young Reformers Network, which focused on ways of ensuring more meaningful participation of young people in the life of the churches.

The five-day gathering was hosted by three of Indonesia’s member churches of the Lutheran World Federation (LWF), the Simalungun Protestant Christian Church (GKPS), the Christian Protestant Church in Indonesia (GKPI) and The Indonesian Christian Church (HKI).

Peace can never be taken for granted

On the final day, delegates heard from Indonesia’s special envoy for interfaith relations and intercultural dialogue, Professor Syafiq Mughni, about ways in which his country seeks to promote peaceful cooperation among followers of the six officially recognized faith groups. Local leaders from some of those groups attended the session that focused on the five principles, known as Pancasila, upon which the nation was founded following independence in 1945.

Noting the huge diversity of ethnicities, languages and religions in his country, Mughni stressed that “peace can never be taken for granted”. Since he took up the post last year, he has organized conferences to foster good relations between the different faiths and to promote “a culture of peace” in schools and universities. As a Muslim leader, he has also met with Islamic leaders around the world to promote ‘Wasatiyya’, a term meaning the ‘middle way’ or moderate Islam, as the nation’s majority religion

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Question related to this article:
How can different faiths work together for understanding and harmony?

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LWF partnership with Islamic Relief Worldwide

Engaging in interfaith dialogue and cooperation was identified as a key point of the LWF’s strategic priorities  for the coming years and is particularly relevant to the Asian context where Christians form just a small minority in most countries. From India, where growing Hindu nationalism has led to attacks on Christian and Muslim communities, to Myanmar, where hard line Buddhism has fed persecution of the Rohingya Muslim minority, to Malaysia where the ongoing Allah controversy continues to cause problems for Christian media, religious tensions are never far away from the news headlines.

Highlighting the importance of interreligious cooperation as a way of increasing understanding between different faith communities, LWF Area Secretary for Asia, Rev. Dr Philip Lok noted that the LWF partners with Islamic Relief Worldwide and last year launched a manual on faith sensitivity in humanitarian responses to disasters and refugee crises. The guidelines, which were piloted in field work in Africa, Asia and the Middle East, cover medical, psychological and social issues, as well as practical aspects such as food, shelter and meeting places. Rev. Lok said the LWF “hopes that this kind of cooperation with other faith communities can help promote peace in the world.”

Dialogue at leadership and grassroots level

The Asia region of the LWF includes 55 member and associate member churches in 17 countries, from the Lutheran Church of Australia (LCA) in the South Pacific to The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land (ELCJHL). Delegates at the meeting heard about efforts of churches in many of those countries to promote dialogue at both leadership and grassroots level, despite many challenges stemming from the politicization of religion, as well as colonial histories and ongoing attempts at conversions by some Charismatic groups.

Speaking on the opening day  of the conference, LWF General Secretary Rev. Dr Martin Junge praised the commitment of churches in Asia to peace building, despite the difficulties they face. “The task of peace-making,” he said, “begins within ourselves, within our own churches, seeking to live in peace with each other.”

Participants also heard about the current political unrest in Hong Kong and efforts by churches there to provide a space for rest, counselling and reconciliation within a deeply divided society. Hong Kong delegates noted how Protestant and Catholic churches are supporting each other in this work and they urged people around the world to continue to pray for peace in their country.

Philippines: Teach Peace Build Peace Movement 


Exerpts from an article in Minda News

Bai Rohaniza Sumndad –Usman delivered this speech during the press conference on the 2019 TOWNS awardees at Dusit, Makati on October 10, 2019.

We have to invest in nurturing a culture of peace in the heart of every child . . . In today’s society, a culture of peace should be seen as the core of humanity. In our organization, Teach Peace Build Peace Movement (TPBPM), our mission is to Make Every Filipino Child and Youth a Peace Hero.

Learning to Speak the Language of Peace

In TPBPM, we believe in the power of Peace Education and we have been doing a lot of innovation to teach peace as a lifestyle… we believe in how peace education can contribute to achieving sustainable peace.

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Question related to this article:

What is the best way to teach peace to children?

Where is peace education taking place?

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We have been helping schools and communities institutionalize Peace Education in creative and innovative ways like Music, Arts, Games, Sports and Community Service.

Our flagship program is called Peace Heroes Formation Program with a goal of creating a Culture of Peace in every school and community.

Receiving this blessing and being welcomed to a new family, which for me is the Almighty’s way of telling us to pursue our mission no matter what it takes, is for every child who fears the sound of war… for every child who fears the feeling of being bullied, judged and unaccepted.

This is for every struggle of a Filipino Child — Muslim, Christian and Indigenous Person whose stories range from experiencing armed conflict, discrimination, unacceptance, neglect and victimized by violent ideologies.

This is for every peace education believer, advocate and champion as we dramatically transform the concept of a Culture of Peace as an inherent way of life and as the core of humanity to address the underlying factors of conflict and violence.

I would like to end by giving much emphasis into these words: We have to teach peace to build a culture of peace because it is in building a culture of peace that we can create difference generations of peace heroes.

If we want a peaceful nation, we have to invest in nurturing a culture of peace in the heart of every child.

Australia: Antony Loewenstein wins the 2019 Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize


An article from Jerusalem Peace Prize

Australians for Palestine and the Australia-Palestine Advocacy Network are thrilled to announce that the winner of the 2019 Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize is journalist, author, and film-maker Antony Loewenstein

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Question for this article

Presenting the Palestinian side of the Middle East, Is it important for a culture of peace?

How can a culture of peace be established in the Middle East?

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Antony’s best-selling book “My Israel Question” generated a storm of controversy because of his forensic discussion of the Israel-Palestine conflict and the intimidatory way Zionist lobby groups have affected political discourse and news media to shape their version of Middle-Eastern politics. 

His foray into this veritable minefield saw him personally attacked and even shunned by his community and relatives.

He co-founded Independent Australian Jewish Voices and has said that the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement “is a logical and non-violent response to human rights abuses in Palestine.

The award will be presented by last year’s prize winner Professor Emeritus Stuart Rees AM at a black-tie dinner in Queen’s Hall, Victorian State Parliament [Melbourne, Australia] on Friday  22 November 2019.  In response to the award, Antony will be in conversation with the celebrated journalist and television news presenter, Mary Kostakidis.

Honouring the Me Too Movement with the 2019 Sydney Peace Prize


An article from the Sydney Peace Foundation

Starting with two words, ‘me too’, women around the world have united in solidarity to share personal experiences about sexual harassment. This global call for change – the Me Too movement – has played a game-changing role in destigmatising the experiences of survivors of sexual assault and harassment, and, indeed, has re-imagined a future free from pervasive sexual violence. In recognition of its impact, the movement will be awarded the 2019 Sydney Peace Prize, with Tarana Burke and Tracey Spicer accepting the Prize on behalf of Me Too. The 2019 Sydney Peace Prize Jury citation reads:

“For empowering survivors of sexual harassment and violence, and elevating their voices; for championing truth and justice; for highlighting the breadth and impact of sexual violence worldwide; and for launching a demand for change that is sweeping the world.”

Founder Tarana Burke began building the movement in 2006 in the United States to support survivors of sexual violence, particularly black women and girls, connect to resources for healing, and to build a survivor-led community of advocates against sexual assault. Her grassroots work has now expanded to reach a global community of survivors from all walks of life.

Me Too is a movement about the far-reaching power of empathy. It’s about the millions of people who have raised their hands to say ‘me too’. And their hands are still raised..
Tracey Spicer AM is a journalist, author and broadcaster who has spearheaded the Me Too movement in Australia. She has produced award-winning investigations into sexual harassment in workplaces and founded NOW Australia in 2018 to advocate for safe workplaces and to support those who have been sexually harassed at work.

A demand for change sweeping the world

Contrary to popular belief, the Me Too movement did not spontaneously burst into existence, spurred by allegations from Hollywood actresses against movie mogul Harvey Weinstein. While much of the mainstream media coverage of Me Too has centred around the entertainment industry and the downfall of powerful perpetrators, Tarana Burke is quick to bring the focus back to where it belongs – to the survivors.

“Me Too is a movement about the far-reaching power of empathy. It’s about the millions of people who have raised their hands to say ‘me too’. And their hands are still raised.”

In recounting the first sparks of Me Too, Tarana recalled her deep despair at witnessing rampant sexual assault in her community. Laying on the bed in her one-bedroom apartment in early 2006, Tarana pulled out a piece of paper and scrawled ‘me too’ across the top of the paper. But she didn’t stop there. Below ‘me too’, she began to build an action plan for a movement based on empathy between survivors that would allow the healing of deep wounds. From the idea of empowerment through empathy, Tarana built Just Be Inc., a not-for-profit and network with a mission to support and amplify the voices of survivors of sexual abuse, assault, and exploitation.

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Questions related to this article:

Where in the world can we find good leadership today?

Protecting women and girls against violence, Is progress being made?

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On our own shores, Australian broadcaster, journalist and author Tracey Spicer has been spearheading the Me Too movement, speaking out about prevalent sexual abuse and harassment in the workplace and seeking to build a support network for survivors. The spark which truly ignited the Me Too movement in Australia was a tweet from Tracey in 2017 to her 57,000 followings asking people to “contact me privately to tell your stories.” The tweet received more than 2,000 responses and propelled Me Too into the Australian public conscious and discourse. Following a flood of responses and harrowing stories from survivors, Tracey set up NOW Australia to support people across all industries who have been sexually harassed, assaulted or intimidated at work.

Commending Tarana for starting the movement, Tracey spoke of her optimism for a better future. “The Me Too movement has changed everything, it gives women a support base and information with which they can speak out and tell their stories.”

In our own backyard

The Me Too movement has kickstarted an outpouring of individual and collective voices shining a spotlight on the universal experience of women and some men with sexual harassment and abuse. And Australian society is unfortunately no exception. Statistics show that 1 in 5 Australian women will experience sexual violence in her lifetime, and that 1 in 2 will be subjected to sexual harassment. And these statistics only become more severe for indigenous women and women living with a disability. It is clear that we continue to have a very serious problem with attitudes towards domestic violence, consent, sexual abuse, and harassment.

The Me Too movement has revealed holes in our cultural norms and legal structures which must be addressed to better serve our communities and promote progress. Australian Sex Discrimination Commissioner Kate Jenkins announced in 2018 an Australian Human Rights Commission-led National Inquiry into Sexual Harassment in the Workplace. ‘Me Too has given us reason to be hopeful,’ says Jenkins.

Julian Burnside AO QC, 2014 Sydney Peace Prize Laureate, strongly supported Jury’s choice:

“It is a wonderful thing that Me Too is to be awarded the Sydn ey Ppppeace P“It is a wonderful thing that Me Too is to be awarded the Sydney Peace Prize…The Me Too movement has done a remarkable job drawing attention to a problem which was recognised by virtually all women and virtually no men. Since men are at the heart of the problem, it is a great thing that no man will now be believed if they say they are unaware of the problem Me Too has exposed.”

2019 Sydney Peace Prize

Without justice, peace is hollow and fragile. Every human being has the right to live their life in dignity, and when rampant sexual harassment and violence goes unchecked, we are all diminished and lose sight of our common humanity.

Me Too has changed the way we understand and talk about sexual harassment and violence, by highlighting the magnitude and impact of sexual harassment and violence around the world, in domestic, public spaces, and workplaces.

We owe future generations a world free of sexual violence. I believe we can build that world. Do you?”
To create spaces where survivors can speak truth to power in search of a better world requires courage, vision, leadership, and heart. Tarana, Tracey, and the many women and men raising their hands in unison to demand that their voices be heard challenge the societal structures and norms we have thus far accepted.

In Tarana’s words, “We owe future generations a world free of sexual violence. I believe we can build that world. Do you?”

The Sydney Peace Prize will be awarded on Thursday 14 November at Sydney Town Hall. Tickets available at bit.ly/SPPMeToo

Asia and Pacific: International Day of Peace


A survey by CPNN

We have found 50 actions in 16 Asian and Pacific countries. They were listed in Google during the week of September 21-28 under the key words “International day of peace” and 国际和平日 (Chinese) as well as on the website of the event map for the International Day of Peace, the facebook page of the Global Feast and the facebook page of International Cities of Peace. No doubt there were many events listed on the Internet in languages other than those for which we searched.

In addition to these, there are about 125 actions listed on the maps of One Day One Choir and Montessori schools singing for peace, but there is no indication which took place this year and which took place only in previous years.

China continues each year to commemorate the massacre of Nanjing, saying “no more” to war.

Here are excerpts from articles about the actions:


Afghanistan’s Civic Party plans to celebrate this day on the World Peace Day, which is one of the most urgent needs of dear Afghans with a martial arts competition with the participation of the National Martial Arts Federation and the participation of Pakistani and Iranian opponents under the name “Fighting to launch peace.”


On this International Day of Peace, hear from four leading international women’s organisations working for peace, justice, human rights, gender equality and women’s empowerment.


Celebrate peace in community in Peace Park, Ashbury on Saturday, September 21, the International Day of Peace on its 20th anniversary. At 12pm we will observe the international mid-day minute of silence together, and then enjoy a Feast for Peace, which are taking place across the world. Please bring nourishing food & drink to share.


Enjoy the stands and activities at our Partners for Peace Fair. View finalists’ artworks in the 2019 Yolande Frank Art Awards and cast your vote for the ‘We The Peoples…’ (People’s Choice) Award. Learn about creative community service by our youngsters in the Global Goals Challenge.


A social-creative gathering led by Iraqi-Australian Artist Niz Jabour with newly arrived refugees and local community in Newcastle Australia


Cygnet Centre for Peacebuilding and Transformation invites the community to come together on Saturday 21 September to honour International Peace Day. ‘Growing Peace,’ a two part arts based celebration will include an afternoon event with a Welcome to Country, a Corroboree by Gifted Murris Unit, collaborative arts activities, a talking circle focused around peace, inclusion, and reconciliation, and a closing ceremony featuring the creation of a ‘Peace Tree.’ The afternoon event will be followed by an evening concert of music from the heart of many faiths, The duo Kim Cunio and Heather Lee perform some of the oldest and most beautiful sacred music written, from Hildegard of Bingen to the Dead Sea Scrolls, early Christian chant to the fire of Sephardic song.


A vigil for peace will be held to mark our solidarity with the world-wide peace movement. We will discuss the development of actions in support of peace in Australia and Worldwide. Time 12.00 noon till 4.00 pm, Saturday 21 September 2019 at Apex Park, Nelson Bay.


International Day of Peace Celebration hosted by United Nations Association of Australia WA Inc Sunday 22nd Sept 2019 at 2 PM – 4 PM Fremantle Town Hall, King’s Square, Fremantle, Western Australia 6160 Free Event. Perth Rotary Member Jurgen Baumhoff will be flying the Perth Rotary and the Rotary Path to Peace Project flags. Also our Perth Rotary Four Way speaking contest winner Emilia Gilmore has kindly agreed to join the UNAAWA Peace Day celebration and join the Youth Panel Building a Culture of Peace and she will do her presentation as done at our Club.


Roots & Shoots member schools in South Australia are offered free native seeds – courtesy of Blackwood Seeds – to make native seed balls in celebration of the UN International Day of Peace. The seeds will grow into trees which reduce global warning by removing carbon dioxide from the air, storing it in their trunks and soil, and releasing oxygen into the atmosphere.


Regardless of your belief, religion, race, background, political opinion, socioeconomic status, or … you are invited to attend this Hands for Peace event. The initial aim of the event is for the city of Melbourne to witness a diverse range of approaches in expressing the concept of Peace. In addition, to observe if and how the performances can engage people in holding hands to form a circle at 3:00 PM for a few moments. On this day, let us find together what we collectively think Peace feels like and taste a symbolic glimpse of it.


Celebrating the International Day of Peace, GaanBangla television will organise a special concert tomorrow, at a hotel in the capital. Kailash Kher, Aditi Singh Sharma, and Kaushik Hossain Taposh, with renowned instrumentalists Sivamani, Sanjay Das and Arshad Khan, among others, will be performing at the concert. Sheena Chohan will host the event.
“With the theme, Music for Peace, GaanBangla TV has been taking initiatives under its banner, Wind of Change. This concert is an attempt to bring peace and overcome hatred through music,” said Taposh.


The Department of Information Studies and Library management in association with East West University Library celebrated International Day of Peace 2019 with a series of program including “Community Feast” on 22 September 2019 at EWU faculty lounge. Students of East West Bidyaniketon were invited to join community feast. These allies believe that sharing food together fosters connection, cooperation as well as bring peace. Therefore, these allies arranged Community Feast with the theme of “Sharing Food, Bringing Peace” where participants bring a dish and share it with colleagues as well as students.


On this day students will join together to celebrate a Culture of Peace. We will start the day by planting a Peace Tree with religious leaders. At the campus of Preah Sihanouk Raja Buddhist University of Battambang youth will participate in different art workshops to express their vision for Peace. We will hold a minute of silence at 12.00 pm. Apart from art workshops students will have the opportunity to attend different workshops and watch movies. By the the end of the event we will gather to meditate all together


At ISPP the whole school from kindergarten to grade 12 together will write the lyrics of a song expressing our vision about peace. The school will be divided in 6 groups and each group will have 40 minutes to write about peace and humanity.


9 Yue 21 is the International Day of Peace. On this cay the Chengdu Hi-tech Zone West Park Street 2 Hao Yuan carried out, “I have a contract with peace.” International Peace Day volunteers promoted activities in the community plaza with participation of more than 50 people. The event calls on the residents to love peace, protect peace, speak in a civilzed way, abide by the rules, create a peaceful and harmonious society, and eliminate actions that are not in conformity with peace.”  Volunteers introduced the “ Peace and Love ” exhibition.


High School students and teachers of Maple Leaf International School – Hainan explore International Peace Day and complete a written reflection. They are introduced to the story of Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes, and learn how to make origami paper cranes. The celebration of learning will be done in the form of a school display.


“The right to Peace, Peace to the Earth”
The Catholic Mission School has been strongly promoting the International Day of Peace for many years.
Prayer Meeting about world peace
Go to the Hong Kong Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception for a prayer about world peace.
Peace ambassador students will promote the message of peace to the kindergartens through storytelling and arts and crafts.
All students of our school will join various programs to acknowledge the importance of this day.
with heart-felt messages about peace.
Please pay attention to our facebook page about the International Day of Peace


On September 20th, the Hongqiao Town Center Kindergarten launched the “Doll Painting Peace Blueprint” as their International Peace Day activity. They listened to a veteran and made drawings about peace. Activities such as this allow children to grow the seeds of peace from a young age, feel the hard-won happy life, and express good wishes for world peace.


On September 21st, the “Zi Jincao” choir performed peace songs in the memorial hall of the victims of the Nanjing Massacre that occurred during the invasion of China.


YOUNG AND CURIOUS KIDS’ CLUB. An event celebrating International Day of Peace by urging children between 7 to 12 years of age to think about the various ways in which they may contribute to the global peace movement. They will also be engaged in creative writing.


Volunteers of National Oral Cancer Prevention Initiative in association with Kalinga Institute of Dental Sciences will meet and interact with public gathering and will sensitized them about the importance of their oral & systemic health and also their responsibilities in creation of peace in world.


Peace Rally, Oath taking by student, Tree plantation with Senior citizen, teachers, students and NCC cadets.


On the occasion of International Day of Peace, Society for Nature, Education and Health (SNEH) organized an event on September 21, at IDCOL Auditorium, Bhubaneswar. Sj. Jagannath Saraka, Honorable Minister, SC & ST Development, Sj. Haraprasad Das, eminent writer and columnist and Prof. Radhamohan, renowned environmentalist and former State Information Commissioner graced the occasion and spoke at length on the relevance of peace in modern human life as well as the environment. All the dignitaries gave emphasis on protection of the environment and the importance to meet the challenges of climate change for sustainable peace on earth. Unless we take action to mitigate the adverse impact of climate change, life on our planet would not be possible, agreed all the speakers.

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Question for this article

What has happened this year (2019) for the International Day of Peace?

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On 21st September 2018 , Global Human Help & Harmony collaborated with Vrukshmitra Mandal and Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidhyalaya to celebrate 1st International Peace Day in Bhuj , Kutch , Gujarat , India. A Peace March and Candle March were conducted along with Cultural Programs and a Musical Event. Religioius Leaders of different religions came onto the same stage to spread the message of peace


As a member of International Cities of Peace, Chandigarh joined the Global Feast to celebrate the International Day of Peace.


Peace promotion and awareness through education and art.


We are planning the peace event with this agenda
Introduction of the event by Tinat Atifa Masood
1. One minute of silence at 12 noon
2. Short speech on Srimanta Sankardev by Krishna Kinkar Kaki
3. Meditation
4. Song on Peace by Chiranjita


Schools and madrassas celebrated the International Day of Peace in Hailakandi district on Saturday. The celebration was held at Panchgram Town High School, Katlicherra Girls’ High School, GCRBM High School, Indramani Public High School, Rangauti Girls’ High School, 887 No.Ratakandi Algatilla LP SCT, JCHS School, GVM HS School and 745 No.Sashimohan LP School. Students recited poetry, sung peace songs as well as performed dances and skits. Special assembly, seminar, peace talk, oath taking, screen show and rallies were held.  Students presented their views on the importance of maintaining peace and harmony in the society and laid stress on how each and everyone can play an important role in achieving it.


As a member of International Cities of Peace, Sahibzada Ajit Singh Nagar joined the Global Feast to celebrate the International Day of Peace.


As a part to celebrate and commemorate The International Peace Day 2019, we will hold a talkshow and music performance in Bogor, West Java, Indonesia. The talkshow, called “Peace-Talk”, will focus on how the youth generation can participate in building peace among their community and share peace messages across their social media in order to counter violent extremism, such as false news and online hate speech


Dance For Peace Festival is an electronic dance music festival dedicated to raising the awareness for peace, celebrating love, life, sharing and healing. Bringing people together to co-create a trans-formative experience through music, art and dance.


We celebrate the International Day with Peace. The children sing “Light a candle for Peace”. We also march and carry the flags of different countries, candles and white flowers. We wear white as we celebrate Peace day.


We are folding 1000 cranes for peace across the whole college community (one crane per student, teacher or administrator) – which will be displayed as an art installation.


MasterPeace Nepal celebrated Peace Day 2019 with a program of children’s dance. Click on link for video.


In this event, children from different schools in Kathmandu will come together to take action and raise awareness on the theme of this year’s Day of Peace. Children will spread awareness on the need to take climate action: in their schools and in their communities.


NVC Practise Group Nepal celebrated the Campaign Nonviolence with empathy tents, nvc seminars and peace rallies


The Everyday Peace Initiative took part in the Campaign Nonviolence with
workshops, trainings and research.


The International Day of Peace will start with the special morning assembly including prayers and meditation, then a march and art activity/ competition among student for the given theme of Climate Action for Peace. Later there will be debates and speeches . . . and a role play on cultural diversity and cultures…


Ravi Cultural Forum, Harappa, Sahiwal Pakistan is organizing Ravi Rung Peace Festival as a part of International Drum-Up for Peace, Project on September 21st, 2019 (United Nations International Day of Peace).


Jhanga, Pakistan took part in the Campaign Nonviolence September 14-22, 2019


The Youth Association for Development took part in the Campaign Nonviolence September 14-22, 2019


SMILE for PEACE Mission, in conjunction with UN International Day of Peace, is a tree planting activity and feeding program for the children of Hadji Maulana Primary School located in Upper Caro, Kapayawan, Isabela City, Basilan.


The Peace-IPPNW Commission of the UP Medical Students for Social Responsibility presents Himig: an open mic event, with the theme of “Peace and Human Rights”. Through this open mic, participants are given the opportunity to exercise their right to freedom of opinion and expression. Through poetry, prose and music, we aim to foster a sense of unity and to strengthen and instill in our participants a yearning for peace in all its levels


Miriam College Center for Peace Education held events from Sept 16- 23, including a presentation on the climate crisis and nuclear weapons


“May peace prevail on earth!” On the occasion of the UN International Day of Peace and to celebrate the 13th International Lasallian Days for Peace, peace advocates from different faiths and organizations, students and educators gathered to hold a Peace Pole Dedication Ceremony at the De La Salle University Medical Health Sciences Institute, in Dasmarinas Cavite, Philippines.  The Peace Pole Dedication Ceremony started with interfaith peace prayers, heralded by Hon. Emerita Garon, WCCI International Trustee, ringing a Tibetan bell to usher in the ceremony. Reverend Fr. Dominic Lee read a Christian prayer in Mandarin while Venerable Miao Jing Shih of the Fo Guang Shan Mabuhay Temple intoned the Buddhist Mantra for Peace. The Prayer for Sincere Effort and Commitment to Interreligious dialogue was led by Sr. Maria Malau, NDS of the CBCP Episcopal Commission on Interreligious Dialogue in Bahasa Indonesia, while Ma. Ofelia Cantor of the Bishops Ecumenical Forum/Philippine Ecumenical Peace Platform prayed for the resumption and success of peace talks between the Philippine government and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines in the Ibanag dialect.. 


The Office of the Youth Commissioner in partnership and collaboration with @Riwaya @Philippine Alliance of Human Rights Advocates -Pahra Wesmin Basulta and Jihad Al Akbar Foundation will provide an online platform via social media for Muslim young Filipinos to showcase literary and arts that they have created as entry to the IYD 2019 to fight climate change and to promote peace.


The Labour of Love Community Music Event will feature songs accompanied by live music, prose and poetry readings and videos that speak to our common humanity and the theme of peace/peace and climate action . There will also be an open-mic music session.


The 2019 Global Common Society International (GCS) International Convention took place on September 21, 2019 at Chosun University in Gwangju, Korea, celebrating the 40th anniversary of the founding of the GCS International and the 38th U.N. International Day of Peace. Approximately 1,500 people from about 20 countries attended. GCS International President Choue made a keynote speech, followed by presentations by Prof. Luc Reychler of Leuven University in Belgium. After that, there was a ceremony to inaugurate the GCS Global Peace Corps, followed by a 15-minute joint taekwondo demonstration by about 1,000 members of the GCS Global Taekwondo Peace Corps Korea. In the afternoon, the 2019 GCS Peace Concert took place at the Haeoreum Center.


Kunihiko Terasawa, Wartburg College associate professor of religion, recently presented at the United Nations International Day of Peace in Goyang, South Korea. His presentation, “Interreligious Dialogue for Peace,” was one of several made by the peace keepers in attendance. The International Day of Peace was established in 1981 by the General Assembly of the United Nations. The event was hosted by the Korean Organizing Committee for UN International Day of Peace (KOCUNIDP), which promotes peace campaigns in Korea.
“I presented because the political relationship between Japan and Korea is at its worst now, and nationalistic populism has dominated in Japan, South Korea, North Korea and China.” Terasawa said. “In order to overcome resentment of nationalist populism, it is important that universal religions, such as Buddhism and Christianity, work together. . . . Religion often divides us, but it can also unite us if we go beyond selfish denominational egotism,” . . . “That is why interreligious dialogue and cooperation is critically important, especially with our youth and our students in the Pacific Rim, including the U.S.”


On September 19th, Co-Chair Ban Ki-moon gave a keynote speech at International Day of Peace Commemorative Roundtable. This event was held as a part of the annual Peace BAR Festival a forum on the topic ‘The Future Unhinged: Climate Justice for All,’ and was hosted by Kyung Hee University from September 16th to 19th.“In order for individuals and communities to escape the existential threats of climate change, we must act now.” – Ban Ki-moon At the Roundtable, BKMC Board member Irina Bokova who is also former Director-General of UNESCO and an Honorary Rector of Humanities College at Kyung Hee University featured as a moderator. Club of Rome member Ian Dunlop, Professor Peter Wadhams of Cambridge University and Chancellor of Kyung Hee University System Inwon Choue attended as panelists to address global climate change crisis.


On the International Day of Peace, +Peace, Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies, and Impact:Peace launched the Peace in Our Cities Campaign, with 11 mayors and local officials representing over 15.8 million people from Colombo, Sri Lanka; Nairobi Municipality, Kenya; Cali, Colombia; Guadalajara, Mexico; Tripoli, Lebanon; Bangui, Central African Republic; Durban, South Africa; Escobedo, Mexico; Kumanovo, Macedonia; Kibera County, Nairobi, Kenya; and Chaguanas, Trinidad and Tobago, pledging to work towards halving violence in their cities by 2030. The campaign calls on mayors, local authorities, civil society, the private sector, and other partners to sign the pledge and join the growing movement to transform global violence.