End Sexual Violence in Conflict - Global SummitYesterday many Ambassadors for Peace and friends of Universal Peace Federation were attending the Ending Sexual Violence in Conflict Global Summit in ExCel centre, London.

As well as the headline leaders of this initiative, Angelina Jolie and William Hague, thousands of UN staff, government officials and NGO representatives took part in a series of expert conferences to highlight both the importance of removing impunity for sexual violence in conflict and the best practices for investigation, documentation and bringing cases to a successful conclusion.

In several instances women panelists or delegates explained that they had been raped and described the painful process of healing both physically and psychologically. Dr Denis Mukwege shared about the work of his Panzi hospital in South Kivu, Democratic Republic of Congo, to heal women from the scars of rape in what has been described as the 'rape capital' of the world. He told me of attempts on his life in 2010 that had almost stopped him from working at one stage.

Malmo Islamic Centre

Celebrating Swedish National Day in the Malmo Islamic Centre. It was an honour to have been invited to speak during this programme representing the Universal Peace Federation. The Islamic Centre is famous for its involvement in Malmo public life. Eric Ullenhaag, the Government Minister for Integration, addressed the gathering after the Friday midday prayers.

Concert InvitationA Universal Peace Federation (UPF) - UK, YouthUPF and International Relief Friendship Foundation (IRFF) - UK concert to raise money for a North Korean Medical Project was held last night in UPF's UK Head Quarters last night featuring wonderful singers and musicians who donated their efforts for the cause. The audience was also able to enjoy spicy Korean food as well as learn about the jointly supported North Korean Medical Project and other IRFF humanitarian efforts. Photo Link  

IWD 2014 Margaret Ali with Baroness Verma

At the Universal Peace Federation's (UPF) International Women's Day 2014 event in the UK's House of Lords, Margaret Keverian Ali, a Director of UPF UK, spoke of the role of women from a UPF perspective. Co-founded by Father and Mother Moon in 2005, UPF is currently guided by Mother Moon* after the ascension (passing) of Father Moon almost 2 years ago.

Dr Aaron Rhodes presenting a paper at a UPF conference at the European Economic and Social CouncilForum for Religious Freedom - Europe names Aaron Rhodes President

Vienna, 4.Apil, 20014 (FOREF): Dr. Aaron Rhodes will succeed Professor Christian Bruenner as President of the Forum for Religious Freedom – Europe (FOREF).  The board of directors will formalize the selection at their General Assembly meeting on 5 April 2014.

Aaron Rhodes is a founder of the Freedom Rights Project, a human rights research initiative and think-tank.  He was formerly associated with the Institute for Human Sciences (IWM) and the International Helsinki Federation for Human Rights (IHF), which he led for 14 years between 1993 and  2007.  In 2008, he and colleagues established the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran.  Rhodes has taught and lectured widely at universities in the United States and Europe. (Photo [L-R] Peter Zoehrer, Dr. Aaron Rhodes, Dr. Willy Fautre, Jura Nanuk)

Dr Walter SchwimmerWalter Schwimmer is the Former Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Chairman of the International Coordinating Committee of the World Public Forum – Dialogue of Civilizations. He gave this speech in Japan during a series of Universal Peace Federation events.

What is Europe? Looking at the map, strictly speaking, and from a geographic point of view, it is not a continent at all but a mere peninsula tacked onto Asia, the Western-most outreach of Eurasia, while Japan is the Eastern-most one. Europe has been considered since ancient times a continent with a strong cultural identity, despite its huge variety of nations, languages, features, landscape and religious beliefs. You will find in Europe 49 states, 200 languages, and several religious affiliations: Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox Christians, Muslims, Jews and even Buddhists; there are Latin, Germanic, Slavic and Ottoman traditions, and others. But for millennia this Europe was far from forming unity and providing peace.

Pauline LongPauline Long photo courtesy of Ingrid Marns

'In the Twenty First Century Congo has been dubbed the Rape Capital of the world. We should ask ourselves: Why? For How Long? If it is not Congo, it might be Ghana, Kenya, Zimbabwe or Rwanda. It might be any African country. It is always Africa. Why? Is it because we are not out there screaming and shouting? Because we are not out there defending? Is it because of the lack of human love?

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