Africa Day was celebrated in a Universal Peace Federation (UPF) - UK organised event yesterday with a variety of perspectives in a packed House of Lords committee room kindly hosted by Baroness Howells of St Davids. The event was also graced by a visiting Nigerian UPF delegation. Speakers included Ms. Belinda Otas, a versatile journalist, writer, editor, cultural critic, and an independent blogger and Mrs. Charlotte Simon, co-founder of Mothers of Congo, who is from eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. Mr Aliu Bello, who worked for UNICEF for 25 years, commented on 'Less Than 1000 Days To Go to Fulfil MDG's and What Comes Next for Africa after 2015'. Hon. Salisu Ahmed Bara u, Commissioner of the Ministry of Religious Affairs and Community Relations in Bouchi State, Nigeria also addressed the gathering on 'Countering Religious Tensions in Nigeria'. Mr Mark Brann, European Secretary General of Universal Peace Federation presented a UPF perspective on 'Africa Day 2013 and the Relationship of Europe and Africa'. Mr. Olaleye Alao, National President of the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification, Nigeria also commented on the relationship of Africa and Europe entitled, 'Africa Day - The Work of God Can Never be Destroyed' concluding in song.
There was a brief consultation meeting on the 16th of May with a group of over 15 Ambassadors for Peace from several faiths. At the table, Robin Marsh, started with welcoming remarks and explaining a paper with a list of upcoming events. After discussing the programme of activities, each shared how to make the events successful. It was very inspiring. Then the talks became more profound as everyone gave short reports on what they do and their motivation for doing those activities. Andreas Bachofner, a Charitas Children Hospital - UK Trustee, told us how the hospital is going on. He emphasised that the doors are always open to serve the local people. He added that the Hospital staff are better off than most people in the area. Unfortunately, the major issues for us now are operational issues. – we need people that will work, and money to run it. At the moment they find money when there is a project or when we bring in something new, like a machine, but no one wants to help for day to day expenses that’s generally the challenge.
Dr. Hyung Jin Moon delivered this address on behalf of his mother, UPF Co-Founder Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon, at the opening of World Summit 2013 beginning, 'Excellencies. First Ladies. Leaders from the world’s religions. Ambassadors for Peace. Ladies and Gentlemen. In honor of God, our Heavenly Parents, and on behalf of my beloved husband and our True Father, Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon, I proudly and warmly welcome you to Korea for this historic World Summit on “Peace, Security, and Human Development.”
Let me begin with a word of deep appreciation to each of you who expressed so much warm and respectful care and concern at the time of my husband’s ascension. I cannot begin to express how much your words have been a source of comfort to me, my family and our entire movement. My husband, now in the spirit world, is heartened by your support and continues to carry on his work without pause. I am as close to him as I have ever been and feel his presence with me at this very moment.
www.worldsummit2013.org (For further speeches and photos of the UPF World Summit)
'I was not into women's issues when I was elected as an MP at age 29. I was passionate about global poverty, peace etc. That lasted until I was about one hour in Parliament. Then I realised I could not keep quiet', Baroness Oona King explained last night, as the Universal Peace Federation celebrated the International Women's Day 2013 in the House of Commons. There were a number of prominent women figures speaking including Lady Fiona Hodgson CBE, Baroness Sandip Verma, Parliamentary Undersecretary for Climate Change, Baroness Oona King and Baroness Meral Hussein - Ece OBE, Seema Malhotra MP, Charlotte Simon, Co Founder of Mothers of Congo, Cllr. Mrs Mimi Harker, Mayor of Amersham OBE and Brita Fernandez-Schmidt, Executive Director of Women for Women. We are grateful for Mr Virendra Sharma MP for hosting the event.
On the occasion of and in support of the 57th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women and International Women's Day 2013, on the theme: “Elimination and Prevention of All Forms of Violence Against Women and Girls,” Universal Peace Federation offers the following affirmations:
First, human conflict and violence have their roots in the breakdown of human relationships, and the human failure to live up to our highest ideals and aspirations. Violence is a symptom of a moral and spiritual failure. If we are to eliminate violent conflict, we must commit ourselves to a moral and spiritual awakening.
To begin with, I feel the need to say that I was an active participant in the war in Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and already during the war I contributed significantly to the establishment of peace and trust. Knowing the horrors of war, today as a politician I act in a way so that those horrors of war would not happen again, neither to us nor to others
Since the time of ancient Greece and the famous ancient Greek philosophers to this day, people have been reflecting on or trying to decipher what is freedom, peace, democracy and how it might be possible to provide them to mankind. From Socrates to the Renaissance philosophers and advocates for peace and human identity, peace has been defined as a basic human right.
This is an exceptional opportunity to tell you the story of my country and my people. This is truly a story of peace prevailing over conflict, of faith in goodness prevailing over fear, a story that started long time ago with bloody wars in the Balkans and it ended in peace finally prevailing in the country and the region I come from.My name is Hashim Thaci. I am the Prime Minister of the Republic of Kosovo, a small country in South East Europe that has a special place in the modern history of the world. My country is the last one to be established in the European continent and we celebrated the fifth birthday of the country on February 17.
www.worldsummit2013.org (For further speeches, reports and photos of the UPF World Summit)