A Culture of Peace was envisioned at a Peace Festival at the 3rd Annual Commemoration of the WARP Summit
South Korea, 18 September - A global peace festival celebrating the 3rd Annual Commemoration of the Alliance of Religions' Peace (WARP) Summit was held. Along with 1,100 international guests participating at the main venue, Hwaseong Sports Complex in Gyeonggi Province, South Korea, 200,000 people in 30 countries including USA, South Africa, United Kingdom, China, and the Philippines participated in the summit by watching through live broadcasting in respective regions.
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.
Seoul, South Korea- On the 18th, at Seoul Jamsil Olympics Stadium, the Peace Festival for the 2nd Annual Commemoration of the WARP Summit -- hosted by Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light (HWPL, Chairman Man Hee Lee), the International Women’s Peace Group (IWPG, Chairwoman Nam Hee Kim) and the International Peace Youth Group (IPYG, Director Du Hyen Kim) – was opened. About 1,000 former president, international law experts, current nation’s ministers, religious leaders, 100 international media, youth and women's group leaders from 130 countries filled the stadium to the brim with 100,000 participants in an effort to advocate for the cessation of war and world peace.
The parade, reminiscent of the Rio Olympics Closing Ceremony, proceeded with various themes, countries' national flowers, world traditional dances, royal procession, language masks, etc. Each performer dressed in a variety of costumes and colors according to their theme, and performed various acts like going around the tracks, while the spectators stood up from their seats and danced.
In his commemorative address, Chairman Lee of HWPL said, “Here today at the Peace Festival for the 2 nd Annual Commemoration of the WARP Summit, the spirits of heaven and people of the earth are gathered, as well as the eyes, ears, and hearts of the global community. Let us urge them (heads of state and religious leaders) to sign their support for the Declaration of Peace and Cessation of War and let us sign our support as well.
This is the way to love the world and all the people, like the light, rain, and air of the heavens. This is true politics and true religion; this is true love and peace.” IWPG Chairwoman Kim said, "To speed up the advancement towards an era of peace, I propose a code of conduct to the global community. First, heads of state around the world should become one for peace and support the Declaration of Peace and Cessation of War. Second, all the religions of the world should transcend denominations and doctrines to become one for peace. Third, all women and youth of the world should join the IWPG and IPYG in promoting the Declaration of Peace and Cessation of War and urging support for the Declaration. Fourth, peace education should be implemented throughout the world," urging the involvement of all people.
The highlight of the event was the card section performance by 11,440 IPYG youth members. Their performance was the outcome of roughly 5 months of sweat-stained efforts in scorching weather combined with a genuine longing for peace that resulted in all the spectators being moved to tears.
One of the youth volunteers of the card sections, Min Ji Song, said, "Many of the card section participant were able to be gathered by their efforts for achieving peace. I hope this kind of heart can become a seen planted in the hearts of people and inspire a sincerity for pace.” She said she wants to give hope to all the people in the world who have suffered from wars and conflicts.
The performance was split into 3 scenes: the history and pain of world wars I and II, the peace activities of HWPL for the cessation of war, and the peaceful unification of the two Koreas, all seeking for peace. The IPYG card section, even from an artistic perspective, received much interest and became a trademark of the WARP Summit.