Speech by Alba Barusell i Ortuño, President of Mayors for Peace European Chapter


Text from speech on youtube

It is a pleasure and an honor for me as president of the European Chapter of Mayors for Peace and mayor of the city of Granollers, to be her with you and to share this space for reflection and peacebuilding. I thank Basel Peace Office for once again inviting Mayors for Peace to participate in this event on “Peace, Climate Protection, and the United Nations: The role of cities and young people”.

The first recommendation of the new peace agenda, which will be presented at the United Nations Summit of the future, is the elimination of nuclear weapons and the promotion of new preventive and diplomatic mechanisms. The more than 8,000 city members of Mayors for Peace are committed to global peace and nuclear disarmament.

We have six years left to comply with the Sustainable Development Goals of the 2030 Agenda, and we are falling behind. The roadmap for reducing poverty, hunger in the world, climate change, and peacefully resolving armed conflicts is not only stagnating but also receding. Accelerating the implementation of the 2030 Agenda is a fundamental condition for achieving the objectives proposed by the New Agenda for Peace. It must be nurtured and inspired by the peace policies that are implemented at the national, regional, and, above all, local level by the municipalities.

(Click here for the Spanish original of this article)

Questions for this article:

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

The new generations have a big challenge ahead of them. The participation of young people is essential to ensuring compliance with the 2030 Agenda. Its contribution increases the legitimacy and sustainability of decision-making and peace processes. All over the world, we find young people fighting for justice, gender equality, human rights, and climate protection. Cities must listen to them and work with them to take advantage of their power as peacekeepers.

Cities build peace by focusing on preserving and guaranteeing the rights of all people, regardless of their condition, and thus reducing the causes of violence in our cities and territories. We build inclusive societies that allow all the people who live in them to feel involved and leaders of their own future. This is a way to strengthen and take care of democracy. Not leaving anyone behind is our global goal. An objective that must be worked on by our municipalities, our territory and our cities.

From Mayors for Peace we consider it important that there are spaces as significant as this forum, in which different actors willing to work for peace in the world converge. We have our most sincere and profound respect for all the efforts made in organizing this forum, and I thank you very much for allowing us to participate and contribute to it.

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