‘Why sustainable peace in new normal Era is vital’
The Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light (HWPL) has ended its World Peace Summit, held online on September 18, 2021. This year’s event, which served the dual purpose of celebrating the body’s seventh anniversary, also dealt with the progress of international efforts and the plans to promote peace agenda in the ‘New Normal’ era, shifting from post-COVID to the with-COVID.
HWPL has been conducting citizen-centred peace-building activities to create “a culture of peace” advocated by the United Nations (UN) and international community to set up an environment of peaceful coexistence since the World Peace Summit in 2014. The occasion presented the concerted action for sustainable peace with cases from various sectors, such as international law, religion, education and the media. It also addressed international cooperation to overcome the current crisis threatening mankind’s coexistence and harmony, which has come to the fore during the pandemic.
Peace-building efforts led HWPL to establish legal foundations and international norms for peace through connecting global actors, embodied in its effort to advocate international law for peace by drafting the Declaration of Peace and Cessation of War (DPCW).
“The DPCW Handbook enables us to systematically teach international law and the essence of peace to these students and others. It enables them to become lecturers in the following course,” said Dr. Mizanur Rahman, Chief Advisor of Asian Association of Law Professors (AALP), who is a former Chair of National Human Rights Commission, Bangladesh (NHRC-BD), highlighting the need to encourage public discourse on peace-building by academia.
In addition to the basic principles of peace assigned to nations to uphold, the DPCW has presented principles that should be dealt with in the present era, such as prohibiting the use of force, fostering religious freedom, and civic participation to spread a culture of peace. In particular, it states that efforts at achieving peace come from all members of the global society by identifying not only nation-states, but also international organisations and all citizens as the main actors of building peace.
Former President of Ecuador, Dr. Rosalia Arteaga Serrano, said: “We know that it will be hard to achieve peace if we are not all working for it. This is why we need to encourage children, the youth, and adults to prevent verbal abuse and work towards reducing inequalities and eradicating disparities to achieve a more equitable, stable, and peaceful world.”
Minister of Education, Human Resource Planning, Vocational Training, and National Excellence of Dominica, Hon. Octavia Alfred, explained that students learn the necessity of mutual coexistence and cooperation through HWPL peace education and pass on this knowledge to their friends, parents, and teachers. She said it also deals with concepts that can develop psychosocial competency skills, such as respect for diversity, order, conflict resolution, and negotiation.
Chairman Man Hee Lee of HWPL said: “Our objective is to end wars in the global village and establish peace and make it a permanent legacy for future generations. Without peace, everything we have managed to build will be destroyed. We should not let this happen. So, to achieve peace, shouldn’t we achieve our objective with the same spirit?”