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UPF-Canada: Report on Peace Road 2023 in Montreal


Montreal, Canada—Since 1981, each year the United Nations has recognized September 21 as the International Day of Peace, a day devoted to strengthening global peace through observing 24 hours of non-violence and cease-fire. Still, peace is as elusive as ever.


At the height of the Cold War in 1981, Universal Peace Federation Co-Founders, Rev. Sun Myung and Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon, initiated the Peace Road project as an international goodwill effort for peace. This project would include an international highway that would physically connect all peoples of the world, an undersea tunnel that would connect Japan to the Asian continent via the Korean Peninsula, and a tunnel-bridge complex connecting Russia and the USA over the Bering Strait in the North Pacific Ocean. Peace Road events take place around the world each year to honor this visionary project and build global awareness on the public level.


This year in Montreal, the Peace Road effort included our members’ participation at the International Day of Peace event organized by Montreal’s Borough of St. Laurent on September 21, which was well attended by various dignitaries of the federal, provincial and municipal levels of government. This year our organization, UPF-Canada, was represented by its president, Dr. Franco Famularo, who was invited to speak about our upcoming Peace Road effort which resonates well with this year’s International Day of Peace theme: “Actions for Peace.”


Two days later, on Saturday, September 23, 2023, Peace Road Montreal was held in an effort that included a 13-km bicycle ride from Peace Park in the Borough of St. Laurent to Parc Eusėbe-Ménard in the Borough of Montreal-Nord.


Supporters included the Federal Member of Parliament for St. Laurent, Hon. Emmanuella Lambropoulos; a representative of the Quebec National Assembly’s member for the area, Marwah Rizqy; the Mayor of St. Laurent, Alan DeSousa; and Aref Salem, city councillor and leader of the opposition. Each of the elected officials shared words of support and expressed their pride for being appointed Ambassadors for Peace.

 

Another highlight is the partnership of UPF with local branches of Lions Club International through a newly appointed Ambassador for Peace, Antoine Nahas, who is the current Lions Club International Chair of the Board of Governors for Quebec and Ontario.

 

After a walk carrying the Peace Road banner, Mayor DeSousa launched the cyclists and rollerbladers on the 13-km trek. Upon arrival, all were greeted by dignitaries and other supporters in Montreal-Nord, including Mme. Roudayna Khcheich, political attaché for Quebec National Assembly member Madwa-Nika Cadet; city councillor for Montreal-Nord Mr. Abdelhaq Sari; and Pastor Serge Celestin, president of the Council of Religious Leaders of Montreal-Nord.

 

The great team effort included speeches by the newly arrived UPA cadets from Korea, Ms. Hirona Neupane and Ms. Hikari Miyazaki, and words of encouragement by UPF secretary-general Robert Duffy and Quebec UPF coordinator Isabelle Laurin. Many thanks to all the volunteers who made the event a success: Pierre Beauregard, Peter Ju, Gino Masciotra, Serge Brosseau, and many other volunteers. 




By Robert Duffy, Secretary-General, UPF-Canada
September 26, 2023

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