Tag Archives: International Day of Peace

Ahead of World Peace Day, UN chief says Global Goals are ‘building blocks for peace’

World Peace Day 2016Ahead of the International Day of Peace, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has stressed that each of the new global Sustainable Development Goals adopted a year ago by 193 countries are the “building blocks” for peace.

Mr. Ban said that every year on that day, the United Nations calls on warring parties around the world to observe a 24-hour ceasefire.

“But peace is not just about putting weapons aside. It is about building societies where people share the benefits of prosperity on a healthy planet,” Mr. Ban said in his message for the Day, observed annually on 21 September.

The UN system is marking the Day early this year, with a host of events that kicked off this morning in the Peace Garden at UN Headquarters, where Mr. Ban rang the Peace Bell and observed a minute of silence.

Women Nobel Peace Prize laureates and the United Nations Messengers of Peace have been invited to participate in the ceremony.

Mr. Ban sounded a call for peace and a day of non-violence before proceeding to ring the Bell. “You know best of all that peace is not an accident. Peace is not a gift. Peace is something we must all work for, every day, in every country,” he said.

While welcoming ceasefires – like the Cessation of Hostilities in Syria, the UN chief stressed that peace is about far more than putting weapons aside and that it involves the hard work of mediation, conflict resolution through diplomacy, reconciliation, peacebuilding and sustaining peace.

He said that he looks forward to visiting Cartagena, Colombia on 26 September for the signing of the historic peace agreement which ends the 50-year war between the Government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia-People’s Army.

In addition, the UN Education Outreach Section will hold a global student videoconference, also at Headquarters.

The Education Outreach Section invited young people from around the world to submit videos on how the Sustainable Development Goals can build peace. The most engaging videos can be viewed on the UN International Day of Peace YouTube channel and a small selection will be shown at the global student videoconference.

Secretary-General’s Message for the 100-day countdown to the International Day of Peace (13 June)

SG's Message for the 100-day countdown to the International Day of Peace

Every year on the International Day of Peace, the United Nations calls on the peoples of the world to remember their common humanity and join together to build a future free of strife. It calls on all of us to observe a day of global ceasefire and non-violence, and to honour a cessation of hostilities for the duration of the Day.

This year’s theme – the Sustainable Development Goals: Building Blocks for Peace – highlights how ending poverty, protecting the planet and ensuring broadly shared prosperity all contribute to global harmony.  When we all work together, we can make peace possible, starting with 24 hours of peace on September 21.

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals were unanimously adopted by the 193 Member States of the United Nations at an historic summit in September 2015. They are universal, applying to all countries. And they are integral to achieving peace.

SDG #16 specifically focuses on “Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions”. Yet peace runs like a thread through all 17 of the Goals.

When people feel secure in their abilities to provide for their families, when they are given access to the resources they need to live healthy lives, and when they feel truly included in their societies, then they are much less likely to engage in conflict.

That is why, over the next 100 days, we must recognize that development and peace are interdependent and mutually reinforcing. We need to work together to help promote and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. The leaders of the world have given us a clear blueprint, and by following it, we can help build a future of peace and prosperity.

Ban Ki-moon

Statement by the Secretary-General on International Day of Peace

peaceday2015This year’s International Day of Peace comes at a time of deadly violence and destabilizing conflicts around the world. Rather than succumbing to despair, we have a collective responsibility to demand an end to the brutality and impunity that prevail.

I call on all warring parties to lay down their weapons and observe a global ceasefire. To them I say: stop the killings and the destruction, and create space for lasting peace.

Although it may seem hopelessly distant, the dream of peace pulses in the lives of people everywhere.

There is no group more poised to help realize this dream than today’s young people. They are part of the largest generation of youth in history, more aware and connected than any before. I urge all governments to make greater investments in realizing the potentially massive contributions of the world’s young peacebuilders.

At the same time, we need to mobilize all partners who share the goal of peace. Non-governmental organizations, faith-based groups and corporations all have a role to play in fostering social progress, protecting the environment and creating a more just, stable and peaceful world. The value of this collaboration is our theme for the Day: “Partnerships for Peace – Dignity for All.”

We live at a moment of peril – but this is also an era of great promise. In a matter of days, leaders from across the globe will gather at the United Nations to adopt the 2030 agenda, our 15-year plan to achieve sustainable development. This is fundamental to ushering in a life of dignity for all, where poverty is history and peace is paramount.

On the International Day, as we mark the 70th anniversary of the United Nations, let us seize the opportunity achieve the Organization’s founding purpose: to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war.

Ban Ki-moon