On September 18, a global peace festival celebrating the 3rd Annual Commemoration of the World Alliance of Religions’ Peace (WARP) was held at Hwaseong Sports Complex in Gyeonggi Province, South Korea. 200,000 people from 30 countries including USA, South Africa, United Kingdom and Philippines participated through live broadcasting.
Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light (HWPL), a global NGO under the UN ECOSOC, showed colorful parade and performances to raise awareness of peacebuilding at the second day of the summit. Despite the increased tension caused by a series of North Korea’s nuclear tests, the summit has sought ways to implement peacebuilding based on the Declaration of Peace and Cessation of War (DPCW) advocating conflict resolution and development of peace as a culture. The card section performance prepared by volunteers of the summit appealed to participants with images regarding a peaceful world achieved by global cooperation.
Mr. Man Hee Lee, Chairman of HWPL, urged the active participation for the implementation of the DPCW by saying, “This precious and indispensable gift was bestowed upon the human race as a legacy from heaven. Who must protect our world? It is us, the family of the global village. Neither wealth nor power can be passed down as a heritage if we fail to stop wars. Mankind and our Earth will share a fatal destiny.”
Ms. Nam Hee Kim, Chairwoman of International Women’s Peace Group (IWPG), said “We already know the solution, the answer, to achieve peace, but if we do not act upon it, what will happen to the fate of this world? The choices we make can change the world. We must unite and show the world the strong influence that peace can make.”
In his congratulatory message, H.E. Dr. Moncef Marzouki, Former President of Tunisia, delivered, “Today we are closer to each other than to people sharing with us the same nationality but not the same values, the first being the protection and promotion of peace in the world. In these conditions of fragile peace and terrible wars, the permanent effort for peace must be continuous and mobilize all goodwill in the world.”
H.E. Adrien Houngbedji, President of the National Assembly of Benin, mentioned the value and future development of the DPCW, explaining that “It (the DPCW) is a praiseworthy effort which needs to be saluted. However, the different principles of this declaration must still be operationalized through a course of action, so that our countries as well as the international community can look for the possibility of implementing these measures in their national laws and treaties, agreements and international conventions.”
Plaques recognizing dedication to peacebuilding were given to the HWPL’s International Law Peace Committee for the members’ contribution to drafting the DPCW. At the end of the event, the participants held each other's hands and marched together, symbolizing a commitment of individuals transcending borders, races, and religions to work for peace.