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International Day of Peace Celebrated in Gabon

French

Libreville, Gabon – UPF-Gabon celebrated the International Day of Peace on Sept, 22, 2014 in the Chamber of the Economic and Social Council as a day of reflection and education. The seminar was attended by Ambassadors for Peace and participants from different fields: politics, anthropology, religion, business, civil society and academia. It also helped candidates for appointment as Ambassadors for Peace understand their role in a network of people working together for peace.

Mr. Joseph Ambiana, national coordinator, was the keynote speaker. He began by defining the UN mission to extinguish the sources of tension in the world and its ongoing struggles against the current realities such as terrorism, war, proliferation of nuclear weapons of mass destruction, poverty, environmental degradation, HIV/AIDS and malaria, as well as the division between North and South, and economic threats.

He also explained principles of peacebuilding, encouraging participants to align their activities and contribute their expertise to bring peace as a common, higher goal. He identified the root causes of conflicts from the viewpoint of UPF as a violation of the true love of one’s neighbor, lack of relationship between human beings and God, and the loss of the true identity of a child of God, resulting in selfishness and lack of trust in others. He emphasized developing one’s heart and godly character through education that develops the true love of one’s neighbor, truth and goodness. He described people’s responsibility to establish harmony and peace in our lives.

During the break, participants asked questions. Mr. Lofilo Porturat, a university student, wanted to know if peace is possible, considering the laws of contradiction advocated by philosophers such as Nietzsche, Heraclitus and Voltaire, not to mention the persistent conflicts within religious communities, such as the pedophilia in the Roman Catholic Church that contributed to the resignation of Pope Benedict XIV.

Mr. Ambiana responded that to have clear explanations to all these questions, Ambassadors for Peace should study Unification Thought, a philosophy inspired by the founder of UPF, Dr. Moon. With the support of the secretary general, Rev. Taty Ntoko Nelson Afonso, he added that instead of contradiction there are many examples of cooperation in nature focused on a higher common goal. An example was given of the relationship between the hatching chick and its egg shell. This is an example of cooperation for development rather than contradiction leading to conflict or violence. Such examples of non-violent development are based on universal guiding principles that originate in the eternal, immutable and absolute God.

This conclusion was shared by the majority. Mr. Franck Ossounga Mali Balla, former Speaker of the Parliament of Gabon, contributed to the discussion by saying: "During the inauguration of the Palace of Peace in Korea 2006, Dr. Moon, founder of UPF, told us: “for peace to reign between two antagonists in a conflict, they must carry out social projects to develop our society.”

The evangelist René Mouboumbi asked what projects UPF has developed. Mr. Ambiana with the support of the Secretary General of UPF described some of the large visionary projects inspired by founder to establish peace between peoples, such as an international transportation network crossing the Bering Strait and connecting Europe with Alexandria in Egypt and the Cape of Good Hope, as well as international marriages that bind together couples from backgrounds where there has been historical conflict, such as between Asians and Europeans, Asians and Africans, blacks and whites.

Mrs. Azizet Claudine Berthe expressed concern about the evils threatening humanity such as HIV / AIDS, terrorism, ebola and other pandemics. The secretary general responded that regarding diseases, people must act according to their share of responsibility in prevention, healing and behavior change; furthermore, there is a need to develop a love of one’s neighbor, fairness, tolerance and sharing to combat terrorism due to poor governance.

The panel discussion ended in a spirit of goodwill with comments by the secretary general.

A similar event is planned in the Port Gentil, the second-largest city in Gabon.

International Day of Peace 2014 from Universal Peace Federation International

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