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First Central Asia ‘Peace Talks’ Addresses Impact of COVID-19

Kazakhstan-2020-06-26-First Central Asia ‘Peace Talks’ Addresses Impact of COVID-19

Astana, Kazakhstan—The Central Asia chapter of UPF hosted its first regional “Peace Talks” webinar on the theme, “The Situation with COVID-19 in Central Asia: Its Impact on Lifestyle and Prognosis for the Post-Pandemic Era,” on June 26, 2020. Seventy-five participants from eight nations—including Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Mongolia—attended the virtual meeting. 

UPF- and the International Association of Parliamentarians for Peace (IAPP)-Central Asia chair, Rev. Chanwook Yoon, gave the welcoming remarks, in which he spoke about the IAPP and its “headwing” ideology, a harmonizing force that builds on the strengths of both right wing and left wing, and the vision of UPF founders, Rev. Sun Myung Moon and Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon. “Rev. and Mrs. Moon say that God, the Heavenly Parent, is colorblind and the universe itself He created is border-blind.” Rev. Yoon also referred to the regional launch of the Heavenly Parent’s Holy Community, an affiliated organization.

Moderating the panel discussion was UPF-Central Asia director of general affairs, Mr. Zinullin Samat, who asked the speakers to address the impact of COVID-19 and share ideas for a better future in the post-coronavirus era. He also introduced good models for cooperation for IAPP.

Former Nepalese government minister and chair of UPF-Asia Pacific, Hon. Ek Nath Dhakal, commended UPF- and IAPP-Central Asia for organizing the webinar and said that he hopes that we will use this crisis to rebuild and produce something better and more humane. 

Former deputy chairman of the People’s Democratic Party in the Central Council and former member of the Oliy Majlis, the parliament of Uzbekistan, Hon. Sharbat Abdullaeva,gave a presentation on the socio-economic situation of the countries of Central Asia and Uzbekistan and shared the country’s best practices on combating COVID-19.

UN expert on gender issues and psychotherapist Mrs. Sagadat Sabitova, from Kazakhstan, said: “Violence is not limited to the battlefield. Many women and girls are in danger [in the very place] where they should be most secure: their own homes. Therefore, today, I am making a new call for peace in the home—and in all homes around the world.”

The founding president of Choco Design, LLC, Mr. Gayrat Baudinov, from Uzbekistan, shared best practices for businesses that are trying to make it through the pandemic. He said: “I work in the construction industry, and I guess it will be a shaky path in the next 5 to 6 years. We have to take measures to survive no matter how much and how long it takes.” He expressed his gratitude to the Heavenly Parent’s Holy Community “for its efforts to bring people together to find the best solutions and share best practices. [It is doing] very notable work!”

Although the organizers faced a challenge of finding speakers because many leaders and representatives of organizations in the region are concerned their security could be endangered if they appear online, several leaders presented in the webinar.

Many leaders and representatives also participated in the virtual event, which aroused their interest in speaking in a future webinar.

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