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Day of Peace 2010 Celebrations Coordinated with UN Offices

A number of UPF chapters organized celebrations of the UN International Day of Peace 2010 in conjunction with local UN offices.

Kathmandu, Nepal

The Universal Peace Federation of Nepal partnered with UNICEF, UNESCO, Peace Education Network of Nepal (PENN), Nepal’s Ministry of Education, and Save the Children in a week of activities called “Peace Week.” From September 14 to 21, events were held throughout the Kathmandu Valley, the capital region of Nepal.

Activities included talk show programs, service projects, street theater, oratory competition, an interactive program, and peace song program, culminating with a celebration at the City Hall on September 21. Dr. B.N. Sharma, President of PENN, was the main organizer.

The State Minister of Peace and Reconstruction, Mr. Dilli Bahadur Mahat, emphasized the importance of children receiving character and moral education, saying, “Education is incomplete without peace and civic education.”

Quito, Ecuador

A delegate of the United Nations Development Fund for Women, Miss Gaia Pallecchi, addressed a round-table discussion on September 18 at the Ecuador Municipal Association Hall. She described the fund’s work to promote a peaceful environment by empowering women and promoting gender equality. An official from the Ministry for the Environment explained the government’s plan for promoting a culture of peace among young people.

The audience included an advisor to the Minister of Agriculture and delegates from the ministries of Justice, Sports, and the Environment. There were also people from political and academic fields as well as representatives of UN peacekeepers.

In keeping with the UN’s emphasis this year on the role of youth in peacebuilding, young people from various religious backgrounds talked about their experiences and activities promoting peace, and young musicians from different religions expressed their heart of peace with excellent performances.

Castries, St. Lucia

The St. Lucia National Commission for UNESCO joined with other local organizations to issue a joint declaration for the International Day of Peace. These included RISE St. Lucia, CAPS, the National Youth Council, FAITH, and UPF-St. Lucia. They urged the people of St. Lucia and the rest of the world not to give into hate and violence.

“Violence is a symptom of a moral and spiritual failure,” the proclamation read. “If we have to eliminate violence and crime, we must commit ourselves to a moral and spiritual awakening. We need to recognize that we are brothers and sisters who share a common spiritual and moral heritage under one God.” The proclamation was published in the two main newspapers, and excerpts were read on the radio.

Oslo, Norway

The information secretary from the UN Communication Office in Norway spoke about the importance of investing in young people at a celebration of the UN International Day of Peace at the Islamic Cultural Center in Oslo. It was noted that 2010 is the International Year of Youth. The secretary general of the mosque talked about the important role of the UN in benefiting the people of the world.

A panel of four young students from the Baha’i, Buddhist, Christian, and Sikh traditions commented on the best points in their faiths concerning peace. They covered ideas such as the importance of our thoughts, equal treatment of all people, kindness among people, and the need for spirituality.

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