The United Nations General Assembly had established the Day in 1981 and two decades later in 2001, the Assembly unanimously voted to designate the Day as a period of non-violence and ceasing hostilities.
The World Peace Day this time came when the conflicts raging in Syria, Yemen, Libya and a number of other countries with severe losses of human lives and sparking a migrants crisis that has hit the world including affluent western countries. The reconciliation efforts in Afghanistan have suffered setback and Pakistan and India are going through a spell of tense situation with possible dangerous consequences.
The situation around the world highlights the importance of peace and resolution of conflicts with peaceful means.
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, in a message ahead of the International Day of Peace, stressed that each of the new global Sustainable Development Goals adopted a year ago by 193 countries are the “building blocks” for peace.
He said that every year on that day, the United Nations calls on warring parties around the world to observe a 24-hour ceasefire.
“But peace is not just about putting weapons aside. It is about building societies where people share the benefits of prosperity on a healthy planet.”
Mr. Ban in his call for peace said: “You know best of all that peace is not an accident. Peace is not a gift. Peace is something we must all work for, every day, in every country,” he said.
The UN marked the Day early this year, with a host of events in the Peace Garden at UN Headquarters, where the secretary general rang the Peace Bell and observed a minute of silence.
Here are some quotes on world peace:
-“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.” – Buddha
-“If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy. Then he becomes your partner.” – Nelson Mandela
-“Peace is a daily, a weekly, a monthly process, gradually changing opinions, slowly eroding old barriers, quietly building new structures.” – John F. Kennedy
– “Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding.” – Albert Einstein
-“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.
– “If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” – Mother Teresa
-“Imagine all the people living life in peace. You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us, and the world will be as one” – John Lennon
-“I believe in the religion of Islam. I believe in Allah and peace” – Muhammad Ali
– “If you want peace, you don’t talk to your friends. You talk to your enemies.” – Desmond Tutu
– “An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.” – Mahatma Gandhi
– “Democracy is necessary to peace and to undermining the forces of terrorism.” – Benazir Bhutto
– “I believe in peace. I believe in mercy.”- Malala Yousafzai