CIVIL SOCIETY REPORT AT MIDPOINT OF CULTURE OF PEACE DECADE
Summary / Zusammenfassung by/von David Adams – verlinkt von A.H.L.
The global movement for a culture of peace is advancing. This is the conclusion of most organizations from around the world, as they report progress toward a culture of peace during the first five years of the International Decade for the Culture of Peace and Non-Violence for the Children of the World. It is documented by over 3000 pages of information submitted by almost 700 organizations from 100 countries which are freely available on the website
This information is only the tip of the iceberg, since there are many other organizations promoting a culture of peace that were not contacted or did not respond to the questionnaire for this report, as indicated by the many partnerships listed by participating organizations. They number in the many thousands, corresponding to the call for partnerships in General Assembly Resolution A/53/243 (para B.A.6). The advance is especially remarkable given that it has been only five years since UN General Assembly resolution A/53/243 first called for a global movement for a culture of peace. It is also remarkable because, as reported from around the world, the mass media has failed to report on news of the culture of peace, and the United Nations and the lead agency for the Decade, UNESCO, have given very little attention to it. In some cases, for example Brazil where there were 15 million signatures on the Manifesto 2000, special credit is given to the International Year for the Culture of Peace for having launched the movement in the Year 2000. The richness of the reports reflects the definition of a culture of peace provided by the General Assembly resolution that established the Decade (A/53/25): a culture of peace consists of „values, attitudes and behaviours that reflect and inspire social interaction and sharing based on the principles of freedom, justice and democracy, all human rights, tolerance and solidarity, that reject violence and endeavour to prevent conflicts by tackling their root causes to solve problems through dialogue and negotiation and that guarantee the full exercise of all rights and the means to participate fully in the development process of their society. And the Programme of Action for a Culture of Peace (A/53/243) adopted by the General Assembly in 1999 encompasses eight programme areas: Education for a culture of peace: Equality of women; Democratic participation; Sustainable development; Human rights; Understanding, tolerance, solidarity; Free flow of information and knowledge; International peace and security. Advice to the UN in all of these areas is given here from the reporting organizations. This General Assembly definition of the culture of peace is positive rather than negative, going far beyond the previous definition of peace as the absence of armed conflict. This is not always easy for people to understand. For example, „in Japan people are apt to think that peace means the situation without wars and
nuclear weapons through the experience the World War. Peace Education means the teaching of the nuclear weapons in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, air raid attack and the battles in Okinawa