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N. Quixtan: A New Era of Peace in Guatemala

Address to the Americas Summit

Washington, DC, April 30-May 1, 2008

The Mayan grandmothers and grandfathers have left us with the mandate to give thanks at the beginning of our activities to the people who make the existence of that moment of our lives possible. Fulfilling that mandate, I first invoke the force that is unseen but still exists, which we Mayans call Bitol and others know as God, Jehovah or Allah. I also thank Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon and his family for their contribution to humanity in promoting a culture of peace.

Guatemala is a country located geographically in Central America. Recently it celebrated the eleventh anniversary of the signing of the peace accords which put an end to more than 36 years of internal armed conflict, which was a product of the Cold War waged on a worldwide level in the latter part of the 20th century. For our country, it represented not only a deterioration of the physical infrastructure but also a conflict among families, communities, and peoples. In Central America, the countries of Nicaragua, San Salvador and Guatemala were affected by the Cold War.

The present generation has to build peace in a society of conflict. In addition, it has to confront the problem of parallel powers such as organized crime, drug trafficking, and corruption.

In addition, it has to challenge the history of exclusion and discrimination against women, youth, and indigenous people in political decisions. It has to be acknowledged that our country experiences a high level of poverty and extreme poverty.

I want to recognize that our country has a diversity of culture and climate that is worth promoting. It also has brought to the agenda of world peace its example of signing a firm and lasting peace.

The central theme which we are called to reflect upon is what is necessary to establish a new era of cooperation, development, and peace in the Americas. There is an African saying that if you don’t know where to go, go back to where you came from.

We have the answer in this store, and I will present it in the order of priority:

  • Restructure the United Nations according to the Vienna Accords, taking affirmative actions with respect to the human rights of the world’s citizens.
  • Give momentum to new youth and women leaders, as Rev. Moon and his wife are doing.
  • Hold events like this one which gives people an opportunity to reflect and learn to know political, social, economic and cultural leaders. Give us opportunities to learn to know world-level leaders and their analyses and proposals for fostering a culture of universal peace.