Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 32 n° 250

Posts Tagged ‘peace’

53rd Message for the World Day of Peace by Pope Francis

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 17 dicembre 2019

Will be celebrated on January the 1st, 2020. As every year, The Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development encourages all Episcopal Conferences, Dioceses, Religious Institutes, Ecclesial Associations and Movements, and all people of good will to organise a prayer meeting in particular Churches to celebrate the World Day of Peace 2020. Peace is a great and precious value, the object of our hope and the aspiration of the entire human family. As a human attitude, our hope for peace is marked by an existential tension that makes it possible for the present, with all its difficulties, to be “lived and accepted if it leads towards a goal, if we can be sure of this goal, and if this goal is great enough to justify the effort of the journey”. Hope is thus the virtue that inspires us and keeps us moving forward, even when obstacles seem insurmountable.
As I observed during my recent Apostolic Journey to Japan, our world is paradoxically marked by “a perverse dichotomy that tries to defend and ensure stability and peace through a false sense of security sustained by a mentality of fear and mistrust, one that ends up poisoning relationships between peoples and obstructing any form of dialogue. Peace and international stability are incompatible with attempts to build upon the fear of mutual destruction or the threat of total annihilation. They can be achieved only on the basis of a global ethic of solidarity and cooperation in the service of a future shaped by interdependence and shared responsibility in the whole human family of today and tomorrow”.
We cannot claim to maintain stability in the world through the fear of annihilation, in a volatile situation, suspended on the brink of a nuclear abyss and enclosed behind walls of indifference. As a result, social and economic decisions are being made that lead to tragic situations where human beings and creation itself are discarded rather than protected and preserved. How, then, do we undertake a journey of peace and mutual respect? How do we break the unhealthy mentality of threats and fear? How do we break the current dynamic of distrust?
The Hibakusha, the survivors of the atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, are among those who currently keep alive the flame of collective conscience, bearing witness to succeeding generations to the horror of what happened in August 1945 and the unspeakable sufferings that have continued to the present time. Their testimony awakens and preserves the memory of the victims, so that the conscience of humanity may rise up in the face of every desire for dominance and destruction. “We cannot allow present and future generations to lose the memory of what happened here. It is a memory that ensures and encourages the building of a more fair and fraternal future”.
The world does not need empty words but convinced witnesses, peacemakers who are open to a dialogue that rejects exclusion or manipulation. In fact, we cannot truly achieve peace without a convinced dialogue between men and women who seek the truth beyond ideologies and differing opinions. Peace “must be built up continually”; it is a journey made together in constant pursuit of the common good, truthfulness and respect for law. Listening to one another can lead to mutual understanding and esteem, and even to seeing in an enemy the face of a brother or sister.As Saint Paul VI pointed out, these “two aspirations, to equality and to participation, seek to promote a democratic society… This calls for an education to social life, involving not only the knowledge of each person’s rights, but also its necessary correlative: the recognition of his or her duties with regard to others. The sense and practice of duty are themselves conditioned by the capacity for self-mastery and by the acceptance of responsibility and of the limits placed upon the freedom of individuals or the groups”.Divisions within a society, the increase of social inequalities and the refusal to employ the means of ensuring integral human development endanger the pursuit of the common good. Yet patient efforts based on the power of the word and of truth can help foster a greater capacity for compassion and creative solidarity.In our Christian experience, we constantly remember Christ, who gave his life to reconcile us to one another (cf. Rom 5:6-11). The Church shares fully in the search for a just social order; she continues to serve the common good and to nourish the hope for peace by transmitting Christian values and moral teaching, and by her social and educational works.The Bible, especially in the words of the Prophets, reminds individuals and peoples of God’s covenant with humanity, which entails renouncing our desire to dominate others and learning to see one another as persons, sons and daughters of God, brothers and sisters. We should never encapsulate others in what they may have said or done, but value them for the promise that they embody. Only by choosing the path of respect can we break the spiral of vengeance and set out on the journey of hope.Faced with the consequences of our hostility towards others, our lack of respect for our common home or our abusive exploitation of natural resources – seen only as a source of immediate profit, regardless of local communities, the common good and nature itself – we are in need of an ecological conversion. The recent Synod on the Pan-Amazon Region moves us to make a pressing renewed call for a peaceful relationship between communities and the land, between present and past, between experience and hope.
This journey of reconciliation also calls for listening and contemplation of the world that God has given us as a gift to make our common home. Indeed, natural resources, the many forms of life and the earth itself have been entrusted to us “to till and keep” (Gen 1:15), also for future generations, through the responsible and active participation of everyone. We need to change the way we think and see things, and to become more open to encountering others and accepting the gift of creation, which reflects the beauty and wisdom of its Creator.The journey of reconciliation calls for patience and trust. Peace will not be obtained unless it is hoped for.In the first place, this means believing in the possibility of peace, believing that others need peace just as much as we do. Here we can find inspiration in the love that God has for each of us: a love that is liberating, limitless, gratuitous and tireless.The grace of God our Father is bestowed as unconditional love. Having received his forgiveness in Christ, we can set out to offer that peace to the men and women of our time. Day by day, the Holy Spirit prompts in us ways of thinking and speaking that can make us artisans of justice and peace.May the God of peace bless us and come to our aid.May Mary, Mother of the Prince of Peace and Mother of all the peoples of the earth, accompany and sustain us at every step of our journey of reconciliation.And may all men and women who come into this world experience a life of peace and develop fully the promise of life and love dwelling in their heart. (abstract)

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Simposio Internazionale 2019 “HERITAGE as a BUILDER of PEACE”

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 12 ottobre 2018

Firenze, l’1-2-3 Marzo 2019 21° Assemblea e Simposio Internazionale della Fondazione Romualdo Del Bianco, “HERITAGE as a BUILDER of PEACE”. il Movimento Life Beyond Tourism è nato con la 20a Assemblea Generale (marzo 2018). L’edizione 2019 del Simposio “HERITAGE as a BUILDER of PEACE” definisce i seguenti obiettivi:
La DIFFUSIONE del “Movimento Life Beyond Tourism” sia all’interno che all’esterno della rete internazionale della Fondazione, affinché i Siti Patrimonio dell’Umanità vengano riconosciuti come grande opportunità di incontro e, di conseguenza, luoghi in cui si può promuovere il dialogo fra culture per la crescita della Comunità Internazionale in Pacifica Coesistenza. Heritage as a builder of peace.
The intercultural dialogue is widely recognized for its strategic role in building the conditions for the development in peaceful coexistence. The world is more and more interconnected but it does not mean that individuals and societies really live together. Today there is more information, technology and knowledge available than ever before.All this allows people to move, travel and visit cultural and natural heritage sites all over the world; but our wisdom will help us to grasp the opportunities offered by the encounters among multicultural visitors attracted by heritage for advancing intercultural dialogue across the world. Intercultural dialogue, in its turn, will extend the impact of heritage on the “UNESCO International Decade for the Rapprochement of Cultures (2013 – 2022)” and will extend the goals of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
“Движения Life Beyond Tourism” в рамках и за пределами сети Фонда, для активного содействия тому, чтобы Объекты Всемирного Наследия рассматривались в качестве важнейшей возможности для встреч между людьми и, следовательно, содействия межкультурному диалогу для роста Международного Сообщества в Мирном Сосуществовании:
“На объектах наследия – которые работают в интересах мира – наследие приобретает душу, защищая и валоризируя себя, и обучая посетителей­, местных жителей и всех участников индустрии путешествия защите всего наследия и планеты Земля”
Фонд Ромуальдо Дель Бьянко, ВСЕМИРНОЕ НАСЛЕДИЕ как СТРОИТЕЛЬ МИРА, 2018
2. ПРОДВИЖЕНИЕ Местных Культурных Выражений – ремесленников, местных производителей типичных продуктов и т. д., обладающих традиционными знаниями своих территорий – в качестве важной возможности для сближения посетителей и местных сообществ: возможность налаживания отношений сотрудничества между ними на пути ко взаимопониманию.
3. ПЛАТФОРМА ДЛЯ ОБМЕНА ИДЕЯМИ И ДИСКУССИЙ между представителями международного академического сообщества и профессионалов в сфере окружающей среды, наследия и путешествия, с одной стороны, и представителями местных культурных выражений и их нематериальных аспектов, с другой.
4. Открытое ОБРАЩЕНИЕ “Строительство Мира при помощи Наследия”, чтобы содействовать формированию нового образа видения Объектов Всемирного Наследия как учебной площадки для диалога различных культур.

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Building bridges of peace and friendship: General Assembly joins in peace prayer on the Danube

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 5 giugno 2018

By Astrid Weyermüller.“CEC believes in reconciliation, reconciliation between different political systems, and between estranged cultures. And today this includes the complexity and opportunity not only of an ecumenical Europe, but also an interreligious Europe and others of faiths and yet others of no overt faith,” says the president of CEC, Rt Rev. Christopher Hill. Novi Sad, the venue of the 2018 CEC General Assembly, witnessed just that during a peace prayer held on the Danube today. Commemoration, forgiveness, and hope were at the focus of this prayer.
A procession of delegates and participants started at the memorial commemorating the victims of the raid on Novi Sad in January 1942 during World War II. Hungarian armed forces occupying the region killed 1,246 civilians of the city, mainly Serbs and Jews, throwing their bodies into the Danube.The procession then passed underneath Varadinski Bridge and ended at the newly constructed Žeželj Bridge. Both bridges were destroyed during the 1999 NATO bombing of Yugoslavia. While the present Varadinski Bridge was reconstructed in 2000, the newly constructed Žeželj Bridge was only opened earlier this year.Commemorating all those who suffered from violence and atrocities, the archivist of Novi Sad Petr Djurdjev presented the history of the site on the riverbank.During intercessions the CEC delegates took this up with the following words: “We pray for those who have been forgotten and remain excluded in our world today that justice may flow down like a mighty stream. For peoples divided, that we may have the courage to ask for forgiveness and so be reconciled for the injustice we cause and the harm we do. For the people and land of Serbia who have known war and injustice in recent years, who, in this place, remember past atrocity.”
At the end of the procession four trees were planted near Žeželj Bridge as a sign of hope and reconciliation. CEC President Hill, Beate Fagerli (Church of Norway), Helen Kesete (Orthodox Church of Finland) and Metropolitan Porfirije (Serbian Orthodox Church) each planted one tree.
They will remain as a reminder of the words of prayer spoken earlier: “Like a great river, you nourish all, enabling us to become fertile ground, to become trees of righteousness, offering shade and bearing fruit. The fruits of the Spirt are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.”

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Another peace deal: An agreement to halt fighting in four zones of Syria

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 9 maggio 2017

siriaRUSSIA’S announcement that Syrian warplanes will stop flying over some of the country’s bloodiest battlefields should be cause for joy. No accurate figure exists for the number of people killed during the war, but monitoring groups estimate that 470,000 have died, the vast majority of them civilians. What is certain, however, is that the Syrian air force, with the help of Russia and Iran, has killed most of these people. Its helicopters and warplanes have dropped bombs, missiles and gas on schools, hospitals and homes. Ending the slaughter means first grounding the regime’s air force.Under the terms of a deal signed by Russia, Iran and Turkey at talks in Kazakhstan on May 4th, this is what is supposed to happen. All operations, including Syrian military flights, will supposedly stop in four “de-escalation zones” within the country where opposition fighters still hold considerable territory. If all sides abide by the deal, then these areas will become safe zones that could, at some stage, be policed by troops from Russia and Turkey. Russian news outlets speculated that troops from Brazil and India may also play a role in peacekeeping. Donald Trump is reported to have approved the agreement in a call with the Russian president, Vladimir Putin.The ambitious plan is the latest in a series of attempts to put an end to the six-year war. Details on exactly how it will work on the ground are thin and there are a number of possible spoilers. Key to the plan’s success will be the Syrian government’s commitment to its terms. Backed by its allies Russia and Iran, the regime has repeatedly vowed to continue fighting until it controls the entire country. In trying, it has often acted against the interests of both its main sponsors.The rebels are justifiably suspicious of the deal, pointing out that Russia has failed to rein in its unruly partner in the past. They are also deeply sceptical about the role of Iran, which they accuse of deliberately stoking sectarian hatred during the war (rebel representatives walked out of talks on Wednesday in protest at Iran’s role as a signatory and guarantor of the latest deal). This mistrust has seen previous ceasefire agreements collapse within weeks, with both sides accusing each other of violating their terms.
Little has changed to make it any more likely that this latest effort will succeed where the others have failed. Under the new deal, Russia, Iran and the regime are still allowed to target jihadists linked to al-Qaeda, who fight side by side with other rebel factions in some parts of the country, including within the designated safe areas. The regime has in the past used this co-operation to justify breaking ceasefires and bombing rebel positions. In Idlib, which is supposed to fall inside one of the four safe zones, al-Qaeda-linked factions now dominate an alliance of rebel groups that controls most of the province. It is unlikely that the regime will stop its bombing campaign there. Nor is it likely that the rebel alliance will stop attacking the regime. Both sides will accuse the other of violating the ceasefire.Like Idlib, many of the areas where the conflict will supposedly be paused as part of the deal have seen an escalation in fighting in recent months. Government forces and pro-regime militias have tightened the sieges of Eastern Ghouta, a densely populated rebel-held suburb of Damascus, and the rebel redoubt north of the city of Homs. The deal will also cover an area in the south, along the Jordanian border, where American-backed rebel forces have made gains against both Islamic State and government forces since the start of the year. “As of the sixth of this month all military operations will be ceased,” the head of the Russian delegation to the talks in Kazakhstan, Alexander Lavrentyev, said. “All Syrian flights over these areas will cease.” If this happens, then separate talks in Geneva aimed at finding a lasting political solution to the war may finally move forward. The chances of this happening, however, are slim. (font: The Economist)

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The Treaty of Rome: 60 years for the promotion of peace, solidarity and cooperation

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 27 marzo 2017

europeOn 25 March 1957, the Treaty of Rome established the European Economic Community. This was the first of major steps in implementing the Schuman declaration of 1950, which called for the pooling of coal and steel production with the view of creating economic stability and preventing another great war.The founding of the European Economic Community 60 years ago was a significant decision for its six founding Member States—Belgium, France, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and West Germany—in deepening their relationship and commit to cooperation at a European level, which led to the building up of the European Union. The Treaty sought to “lay the foundations of an ever-closer union among the peoples of Europe.”In the generations since the signing of this historic treaty, Member Churches of the Conference of European Churches have accompanied this process and worked for a Europe characterized by peace, solidarity, and reconciliation. In the post-World War II era, the churches saw European integration as an opportunity for the flourishing of Europe and its people, and to develop a new relationship with the world beyond Europe.
In the era of the Treaty of Rome the Conference of European Churches was born. With its distinctive mission to bridge the divide between East and West cleaved by the Iron Curtain, CEC brought into conversation churches in European countries separated by different political, economic, and social systems.Today, the achievements brought about by this impetus are at stake. Europe is confronted with multiple crises and confidence in the European project is eroding. The European Union, and our continent as a whole, needs courageous decisions and a renewed orientation to its future as a peace project and community of values. In this spirit, the Conference of European Churches launched a broad process reflection with its Member Churches through its open letter “What Future for Europe?” and a series of regional consultations leading to our 15th General Assembly in Novi Sad (Serbia) in 2018.“While Europe faces challenges relating to mass migration, economic instability, growing Euroscepticism, and outbursts of violence, we must also remember the goods of integration and cooperation,” remarked CEC General Secretary Fr Heikki Huttunen. “The era inaugurated by the Treaty of Rome has brought about freedom of travel, work, and study, and contributed to the overcoming of dictatorships and the promotion of democracy throughout Europe. We must also recall original vision of the founders of social equality throughout the EU as we continue to work for just social and economic conditions for all Europeans.”Together the churches in Europe are shaping a vision for our common future and in commemorating the historic Treaty of Rome we express again our commitment to a “humane, social and sustainable Europe at peace with itself and its neighbours in which human rights and solidarity prevail.” (CEC Constitution). (Erin Green Communication Coordinator Conference of European Churches)

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Syria: Peace is Possible meeting at Caritas Internationalis

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 27 settembre 2016

siriaCaritas Internationalis will host its members working on Syria and Iraq on 28 September in its offices in Rome. The meeting comes a day before Catholic organisations working in the Middle East on conflict in the two countries meet with Pope Francis as part of a Vatican hosted event.
Among the participants at the Caritas meeting will be Caritas Syria president Bishop Antoine Audo of Aleppo, the new Caritas Syria director Riad Sargi, Fr. Paul Karam from Lebanon, Wael Suleiman of Jordan, and Caritas leaders from Iraq and Turkey.
The meeting comes at a key moment with the conflict in the Syrian city of Aleppo intensifying and preparations underway for an assault on the Iraqi city of Mosul. Caritas Internationalis renews its call for a negotiated peace to end the suffering of Syrian and Iraqi people.Pope Francis urged governments on 5 July to find a political solution to the war in Syria as part of the Caritas Internationalis ‘Syria: Peace is Possible’ campaign. “I invite you to ask those who are involved in peace talks to take these agreements seriously and to commit to facilitating access to humanitarian aid,” said Pope Francis in a message.
Dealing with the humanitarian consequences of the five year war in Syria is the largest Caritas relief operation in the world. Caritas provides food, healthcare, basic needs, education, shelter, counselling, protection and livelihoods in Syria and to refugees in host countries. National Caritas organisations reached 1.3 million people last year alone.
Caritas is urging its supporters around the world to put pressure on their governments to:
• Ensure all sides of the conflict come together to find a peaceful solution,
• Support the millions of people affected by the war,
• Give Syrians inside and outside the country dignity and hope
Caritas launched a website to support the campaign which includes specially commissioned artwork, an animated film on the war, an award winning photo series and testimony from Syrians living both inside the country and as refugees in bordering nations and beyond.

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“Peace is possible in Syria” says Pope Francis in support of Caritas campaign

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 5 luglio 2016

Pope Francis is urging governments to find a political solution to the war in Syria as part of the Caritas Internationalis ‘Syria: Peace is Possible’ campaign. “I would like to address all the faithful and all of those who work with Caritas to build a just society,” said Pope Francis, in a specially recorded video message released 5 July, “Peace is possible in Syria.” “Everyone has to recognise that there is no military solution for Syria, only a political one,” said the pope. “The international community must therefore support peace talks towards the building of a national unity government.” “I invite you to ask those who are involved in peace talks to take these agreements seriously and to commit to facilitating access to humanitarian aid.”
Dealing with the humanitarian consequences of the five year war in Syria is the largest Caritas relief operation in the world.
Caritas provides food, healthcare, basic needs, education, shelter, counselling, protection and livelihoods in Syria and to refugees in host countries. National Caritas organisations reached 1.3 million people last year alone.Caritas is also urging its supporters around the world to put pressure on their governments to:
· Ensure all sides of the conflict come together to find a peaceful solution
· Support the millions of people affected by the war
· Give Syrians inside and outside the country dignity and hope
“While the people suffer an incredible amount of money is being spent on giving fighters weapons. Some of the countries providing these arms are also those talking of peace,” said Pope Francis, “How can one believe in those who caress you with the right hand while hitting you with the left?” Caritas is launching a new website to support the campaign which includes specially commissioned artwork from Syrian artist Tammam Azzam, an animated film on the war, an award winning photo series and testimony from Syrians living both inside the country and as refugees in bordering nations and beyond.Caritas Internationalis President Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle has met with Syrians in Lebanon and Greece. He said, “These are not just number, these are human beings. We need to give them hope, dignity and peace. In the names of all the people touched by this conflict, we are appealing to everyone, can we work for peace in Syria.”

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Respect for Human Rights as a Precondition for Peace

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 5 febbraio 2016

Abu Bakr al-BaghdadiThe European Parliament discussed a draft resolution tabled by Swedish MEP Lars Adaktusson (EPP) at its plenary session from 1 to 5 February 2016. The draft calls for a European Parliament resolution on war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide committed against Christians, Yazidi, and other religious and ethnic minorities in Syria and Iraq by the so-called ISIS/Da’esh.
The Conference of European Churches appreciates the efforts of European Parliament in addressing this important subject. Religious and cultural civilisations in the Middle East region are disappearing day by day. We are witnessing one of the most extreme forms of human rights violations in that region, which needs to be prevented and stopped. The destruction of religious communities, ethnic groups and their property—including religious and cultural sites with immeasurable value for humanity—is happening in the Middle East in a systematic and coordinated way. People are being murdered every day.Most victims are members of religious and ethnic minorities including Christians from the ancient churches (Chaldeans/Assyrians/Syriacs) in the region. Yazidi, Turkmen, Shabak, Sabaean Mandeans, Kaka’i, Sabian, Shia Muslim, moderate Sunni Muslim communities, as well as Kurds are captured by militants of the self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS) and other extremist groups.With this resolution the European Parliament is sending a strong message to the UN Security Council to refer the situation in Iraq and Syria to the International Criminal Court. Upon such a referral the Court can assume jurisdiction. Only then could an investigation of these crimes commence under the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (Genocide Convention). The Genocide Convention obliges state parties to ‘punish’ and ‘prevent’ genocide wherever it occurs via international criminal justice mechanisms. The intention of ISIS is to attack any group that disagrees with their political agenda or view of society. Their intention to destroy social, economic, cultural, religious, and moral foundations has been eminently evident from observations made to date.
The Conference of European Churches (CEC) urges all state and non-state actors to pay special attention to the religious dimension of this conflict. CEC deplores the use of Islam for political purposes and the kidnapping of people especially women, children, priests, and bishops. CEC denounces the systematic targeting of Christian churches, monasteries, and other buildings by extreme militants. It asks all relevant regional players to advocate for religious diversity, religious tolerance, and pluralism in the inflamed region. The systematic vandalism, separation of families, violence, murder, and rape as part of the war strategy is unacceptable. Therefore, CEC urges all parties of the existing conflict to find a peaceful solution and to seek the promotion and protection of human rights and respect for human dignity of all people. We urge parties in the conflict to establish an immediate ceasefire and to engage in meaningful dialogue for viable political solutions to the crisis in Syria and Iraq and to create the climate for a national and multilateral reconciliation.Religion can and should be part of the solution; it should never have been permitted to become any part of the problem. Strong interreligious dialogue can contribute to social stability, mutual respect and religious tolerance, diversity, and peace. All parties in the conflict need to recognise the importance of the spiritual and cultural value of all religious and ethnic minorities in the Middle East region in order to create peaceful and inclusive democracies.

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WJC President Ronald Lauder welcomes Netanyahu-Obama meeting

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 15 novembre 2015

NEW YORK – World Jewish Congress President Ronald Lauder praised US President barack obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday for meeting face-to-face at the White House and “taking this opportunity to pursue common values and agendas and strengthen the close partnership enjoyed by the United States and Israel.” Lauder also welcomed the two leaders’ reaffirmation of their commitment to the two-state solution.“A strong US-Israeli relationship is critical for Israel and for Jews around the world,” Lauder said. “For decades, America has stood by Israel, its most reliable ally in the Middle East. American leadership in strengthening the Middle East peace process is invaluable in creating a genuine and lasting peace. I know that the United States stands ready to help advance a two-state solution to help solve the conflict.” “Both President Obama and Prime Minister Netanyahu understand that the two-state solution is the only solution. Both leaders possess the greatness, the vision and the courage needed to move our common relationship forward,” added Lauder.The current wave of terror spreading across Israel, as well as the radical Islamists expanding on Israel’s borders and the genocidal anti-Israel rhetoric repeated by Iran despite the recent nuclear agreement make the US-Israel relationship all the more important, Lauder said. “It is therefore critical that the United States provide Israel with all of the tools necessary to maintain its qualitative military edge in a volatile Middle East,” he said.
“The American–Israeli alliance can help assure the security of Israel, the well-being of the Palestinians, and bring us all closer to peace,” Lauder added. “Progress will not come overnight, it will take time. But now is the time to re-energize the peace process by taking bold action.”

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Dyonisius Jean Kawak (Syria): Peace is the product of justice

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 8 settembre 2015

rifugiati sirianiTIRANA – “What is war?”, Dyonisius Jean Kawak, Syrian Orthodox archbishop, asked while speaking at the international conference “Peace is always possible” organized in Tirana by the Community of Sant’Egidio.“Is peace just the absence of war? Peace is the fruit of justice”, he answered.In a country pounded by a five-year long conflict, the fundamental task is to “educate about peace” because “making peace is a job to do on a daily basis”. The Orthodox archbishop then complained that “Christians are too timid in the face the war”.“We must pray harder for peace”, he said.Concluding his remarks, Kawak proposed some concrete steps for achieving peace: “We need the help of the international community to put a stop to direct and indirect financing of the extremists as well as the influx of weapons and combatants”. Photo: peaceispossible)

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“Peace is always possible”

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 7 settembre 2015

tiranaTIRANA – Andrea Riccardi responds to Pope Francis’ message about refugees at the start of the international meeting “Peace is always possible”, which is gathering more than 400 leaders of the world’s major religions, cultural figures and representatives of public institutions as well thousands of people arriving from all over Europe. The founder of the Community of Sant’Egidio launched an appeal to Europe and the Italian government to institute the policy of sponsorship, an essential practice to achieve acceptance of those who have already arrived on the continent and to eliminate the dangerous crossings of migrants by sea. We support the pope’s appeal with conviction – Riccardi commented – launched right at the start of our international meeting here in Tirana. Accepting his message and heeding to the desire of many citizens, associations and families who want to offer hospitality to refugees, we hereby propose – in the name of all religious leaders gathered here in Tirana – to introduce in European legislative systems the policy of sponsorship. The idea is to enable European citizens, associations, parishes and organizations to assume responsibility for asylum seekers and offer immediate hospitality to those who have already arrived as well as invite individuals and families from dangerous areas, thus preventing the voyages of death in the Mediterranean and the exploitation by traffickers. We particularly appeal to the Italian government to establish the policy of sponsorship. At the ongoing meeting we will discuss ways of achieving peace with concrete proposals to end conflicts, starting with Syria and Libya”

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Assassinio di un leader della comunità di rifugiati

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 31 dicembre 2011

Português: O ex-primeiro-ministro de Portugal ...

Image via Wikipedia

Ginevra. António Guterres, ha espresso oggi profondo rammarico per l’assassinio insensato di un leader della comunità di rifugiati avvenuto giovedì 29 dicembre, nel complesso di campi di Dadaab, nelnord del Kenya. Il leader del Community Peace and Security Team del campo di Hagadera è stato colpito da colpi di arma da fuoco giovedì sera alle 19.45 mentre
entrava nel suo compound. I team delle comunità Peace and Security, gestite da rifugiati, sono fondamentali per mantenere le condizioni di sicurezza nei campi. La vittima è stata colpita ripetutamente e gli assassini sarebbero
riusciti a darsi alla fuga. L’assassinio è stato immediatamente denunciato alla polizia locale. Gli sforzi per salvare la vita del leader della comunità di rifugiati, portato immediatamente all’ospedale del campo di Hagadera, sono stati vani e l’uomo è deceduto questa mattina mentre veniva trasferito a Nairobi. Dadaab è il complesso di campi più grande al mondo e vi trovano alloggio più di 460.000 persone. La Somalia rimane una delle crisi umanitarie più gravi del mondo. Più di 950.000 somali sono rifugiati nei paesi confinanti mentre 1.46 milioni sono sfollati all’interno della stessa Somalia.

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G20 leaders to cut fossil fuel subsidies and kick start Climate Fund

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 2 novembre 2011


Image by TOMOYOSHI via Flickr

Cannes 2/11/2011 Greenpeace today challenged G20 leaders attending this week’s summit in Cannes to deliver on their pledge to cut fossil fuel subsidies and instead invest in green jobs, in response to the current global financial, economic, and environmental crisis. A World Bank report prepared for the G20 shows that if developed countries transferred $10 billion from fossil fuel subsidies to climate finance, this could kick start the $100 billion Green Climate Fund and pay for real solutions that cut emissions, create jobs and help the most vulnerable countries adapt to climate change. This $10 billion funding would represent only 20 percent of the current spend on climate-destroying subsidies.“G20 leaders must deliver on their 2009 pledge by setting a clear timetable for cutting fossil fuel subsidies”, said Patricia Lerner, Greenpeace International Senior Political Advisor. “Instead of lining the pockets of oil companies during a time of financial crisis, this is an opportunity for world leaders to act in the interests of the people instead of polluting corporations.”Greenpeace is calling on the G20 to formulate a timetable for the phase-out of fossil fuel production subsidies. The consumption subsidy reforms required for this phase-out need to be delivered through socially just transition plans, designed to protect the poor in developing countries.The international environmental organization also issued a checklist (4) today of four key criteria for a successful G20, calling on leaders to honour their promises to protect their citizens from the climate crisis, which will make the current economic crisis look small, if leaders fail to act decisively to prevent catastrophic climate change. “Time is of the essence for bailing out the climate”, Lerner added. “With just weeks to go before the climate summit in Durban, governments must show that the G20 can be a calming force for both the world economy and climate, by cutting polluting subsidies and shifting that money to create the green jobs and climate protection investments the world so urgently needs.”
Greenpeace is an independent global campaigning organisation that acts to change attitudes and behaviour, to protect and conserve the environment and to promote peace.

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A constitution-making handbook for peace

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 9 settembre 2011

The Secretary-General of the United Nations, B...

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Today, Friday, September 9th, 2011, Interpeace launches the handbook: ‘Constitution-making and reform: Options for the Process’ a comprehensive resource for national constitution-makers and their advisors. Constitution-making is hitting the headlines. This year alone, constitutional reforms have been, or are, on the agenda in Tunisia, Egypt, Morocco, Nepal, Southern Sudan, Zimbabwe and now Libya. Over 150 new constitutions have been created since 1975, and as many as 20 national constitutions are reformed or adopted each year. Recent months and the ‘Arab Spring’ have proven that this development continues. A modern constitution needs to be legitimate in the eyes of the people, but achieving this is a challenge. Often national and international constitution-makers feel out in the cold as there has been no comprehensive resource on the options for constitution-making and reform. The design, implementation and management of these processes, in an inclusive way, create the foundations for lasting peace. The stakes are high. If the process goes wrong the seeds of future conflict and violence will be sown. Interpeace, an international peacebuilding organization, is now filling this critical gap.
Held at the United Nations (UN) in New York, H.E. Mr. Joseph Deiss, President of the UN General Assembly is providing the opening remarks. His Royal Highness Prince Zeid Ra’ad Zeid Al-Hussein of Jordan, Permanent Representative of Jordan to the UN and Chair of the Peacebuilding Commission Country Configuration for Liberia, will moderate a panel discussion. He will be joined by Jean-Marie Guéhenno, Director of the Center for International Conflict Resolution, SIPA, and former Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations; Nicholas Haysom, Director of Political Affairs, Executive Office of the UN Secretary-General; Jamal Benomar, UN Special Advisor and Envoy for Yemen and former Director of the UN Rule of Law Unit; and Michele Brandt, co-author of ‘Constitution-making and Reform: Options for the Process’.
Four respected experts from the constitution-making domain, Michele Brandt, Director of Interpeace’s ‘Constitution-making for Peace’ initiative, Jill Cottrell, Yash Ghai, and Anthony Regan, have united to create this ‘how to guide’ for constitution-makers around the world.
The handbook provides practical guidance on how to design transparent, nationally led and owned processes that are also participatory and inclusive. Lakhdar Brahimi, who provides the foreword for the handbook, highlights: “I wish ‘Constitution-making and reform: options for the process’had been available to the international community when I was the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Afghanistan. This book asks the right questions.” The handbook will be available on line for all to access from the 9th September at 9am EST on

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Sri Lanka for a real peace

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 30 aprile 2010

The Sri Lankan government seized the last remaining Tamil Tiger (LTTE) rebel territory in May 2009, ending a 30 year war.  But Caritas Sri Lanka says much work needs to create the conditions where peace can flourish.  Caritas says urgent action is needed on resettlement of displaced people, on reconstruction of war-damaged areas, landmine clearance, and reducing tensions between different communities.  The majority of people driven from their homes by the fighting have left relief camps for resettlement areas or transit camps.  However, around 90,000 people remain in camps. Caritas staff working in the camps say conditions are difficult.  Caritas Sri Lanka reports that returnees are happy at being able to restart their lives, but have highlighted insufficient basic services such as transportation, lack of clean water, health services and roads.  A large number of properties are damaged. Reconstruction in the North is going to be very costly since most of the infrastructure is totally destroyed.  A large number of widows, female-headed families, disabled, orphans and elders will need support.  Caritas says that tensions among communities at different stages of the return process have surfaced with allegations of theft of cattle and disputes over common water resources.  Language barriers between different communities also need to be overcome.  A large area in the Vanni district remains to be de-mined. Even in areas cleared for settlement, land mines and other unexploded objects are still being found.  Caritas is one of very few aid agencies with permission to work in the war-affected communities.  Caritas is running various projects to help Sri Lankans rebuild their lives after the war in Jaffna, Vanni and Mannar. During the last months, over 130,000 people have received aid from Caritas.  Caritas focuses on shelter, the needs of farmers, fishermen, small-scale traders, masons, carpenters, education (especially for orphans), counselling, and healthcare.  Caritas also helps former combatants and former child soldiers make a fresh start, and peace building measures to avoid further conflict.

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Peace in the Holy Land

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 16 gennaio 2010

Catholic Bishops of the 10th Holy Land Co-ordination today urged political leaders and people of goodwill to be courageous in seeking a just peace in the Holy Land. The Holy Land Co-ordination represents Catholic Bishops’ Conferences of Europe and North America. It was formed in Jerusalem in 1998 at the request of the Holy See. The Bishops meet with the Ordinaries of the Holy Land every year and through prayer, encouraging pilgrimage and political persuasion seek to demonstrate solidarity with the local Church in the difficult socio-political climate. This year the focus was on the crucial situation in East Jerusalem: property confiscations and evictions. In the final communiqué, the Bishops said: “We urge all people to support public officials who take courageous initiatives for a just resolution of the conflict—a two-state solution with security and recognition for Israel, and a viable and independent state for Palestinians.  For us, this is not merely about politics; it is an issue of basic human rights.” One issue that was brought to the fore has been the growing distance between Israelis and Palestinians where a lack of human contact undermines trust and dialogue. In visits to parishes across the West Bank, Bethlehem University, the seminary at Beit Sahour the Bishops heard the stories of everyday life. There were also presentations from Israeli, Palestinian and international commentators about the current situation. Despite the lack of progress in securing a two-state solution for all, the Bishops believe progress is possible with determination and international support. “Despite the wounds of this land, love and hope are alive.  Peace with justice is within reach, but political leaders and all people of goodwill need courage to achieve it.”

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“Doctrine” for Peace operations

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 10 ottobre 2009

(Washington, D.C.) the U.S. Institute of Peace and the U.S. Army’s Peacekeeping and Stability Operations Institute unveiled the first strategic “doctrine” ever produced for civilian actors involved in peace operations. Strategic guidance for civilian planners and practitioners engaged in these missions is long overdue. While the military for decades has been equipped with doctrine that guides its decisions and actions, civilian actors still operate today without any unifying framework or principles of action. The “Guiding Principles” seeks to fill this gap by introducing: 1) a comprehensive set of shared principles and 2) a shared strategic framework. Both rise directly from the enormous wealth of knowledge and experience that has accrued across the global peacebuilding community over the last two decades. The development of the manual involved intensive vetting and consultation sessions with NATO planners, British stabilizers, U.N. peacebuilders and other key partners. It also involved a thorough review of hundreds of doctrinal documents produced by the very institutions that have toiled in these difficult environments. One year ago today, the U.S. Army rolled out its unprecedented “Field Manual 3-07: Stability Operations,” which established the U.S. military’s support role in these missions. The “Guiding Principles” manual released today is a “companion” publication, designed to support the civilian side of the U.S. interagency—those entrusted to lead these challenging missions.The “Guiding Principles” manual offers a critical tool for educating and training the thousands of new members in the Active, Standby and Reserve components of the U.S. government’s Civilian Response Corps. It can also assist all levels of individuals involved in any aspect of an S&R mission, be it decision-making, assessment, planning, training & education, implementation or metrics.

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“Get a Peace” è la bandiera dei giovani salentini

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 21 settembre 2009

get a peaceSi chiamano Rdk, Jaff, El P, Drug D, e Dada, sono i nomi d’arte di cinque ragazzi, cinque membri del gruppo di Lecce “GPace – Giovani per la Pace” (, hanno pensato ad un rap, buttato giù un testo d’istinto, realizzato un brano e pubblicato un video su facebook ( video.php?v=1196638526906) per urlare la loro rabbia. Muoiono altri sei militari italiani (uno persino conterraneo, salentino, è Davide Ricchiuto di Tiggiano) ma muoiono anche dieci civili, uno strazio a cui non riusciamo e non vogliamo abituarci. Il testo del brano: Get a peace
Sul mio foglio racconto una guerra per il petrolio
sangue e disperazione che si diffondono a macchia d’olio
per colpa del potente che comanda senza morale
un’altra madre che piange, non vede il figlio tornare
una goccia d’oro nero vale più di mille soldati
il loro sangue non conta quanto i contanti guadagnati
il potere dei soldi è più grande di qualsiasi uomo
ti attacca ti distrugge come fa questo suono
una cosa che non sopporto è vedere una madre
che piange lacrime sulla tomba del figlio morto
e non pretendo che mi diate ragione
ma non capisco perchè uccidi per la religione
e spero che questa nuova generazione
guardi un pò di più ai sentimenti delle persone
del dolore dei cari riflesso in una lacrima
e del segno che lascia impresso in ogni anima
la tele produce ciò che piace alla croce
cuoce i cervelli dicendo che nulla nuoce
mentre cadono le bombe aumentano le tombe
il mondo a suon di trombe si fonde. la guerra?!
non si fa per distinsione tra nazione e nazione
ma per le armi e la continua produzione
non c’è onore in un militare che spara sulla popolazione
svarione da bonzo e mi chiudo nella mia pace interiore
la mia voce non tace ora dimmi se ti piace
che la pace si ottiene solo tramite una strage
dimmi se sei capace di dire basta a questa merda
no more guerra ma solo just pace in terra
no bombe sopra agli ospedali e sugli asili nidi
belle facce sui canali “oh dimmi che cazzo ridi?”
ho brividi se penso dove mi ha messo il creatore
siamo così piccoli ma la mia vita ha un valore
e vedi.. ho voglia di reppare per la pace
dentro alla classe sono quello più vivace
dappertutto vedo scontri e guerre di casa
prendete l’esempio da bob distrutto si ma per la blaza
e quella gente senza tetto sopra alla testa
è colpa dell’economia che vuole far l’onesta
e spiegami perchè un bambino quando esce
non vede niente di buono e la paura gli cresce
(by Rdk – Jaff – El P – Drug D – Dada) (get a peace)

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Caritas to assist the people of North Korea

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 18 giugno 2009

Caritas says alleviating the acute suffering of the poor in North Korea (DPRK) rather than military action must be key component to ending the current crisis. Caritas Internationalis members from Asia, North America and Europe met in China last week to discuss the situation on the Korea peninsula amid growing tensions there.  UN sanctions have been imposed on North Korea after the government in Pyongyang conducted nuclear weapon tests and vowed to strengthen its arms programme. Caritas is calling for denuclearisation of the region if peaceful development is to be sustained.  Caritas is urging for peace talks with practical solutions for vulnerable North Koreans as the best way to prevent any escalation into military action. Caritas says resorting to armed confrontation will have devastating consequences for the poor in North Korea and destabilise the region. The humanitarian crisis in North Korea is still present. At least 8.7 million people in North Korea need food assistance (out of a population of 23 million). The number actually receiving aid is much lower and aid is being cut further due to lack of funding. In many areas, health and education infrastructure is close to collapse.  Caritas Internationalis Secretary-General Lesley-Anne Knight was at the Beijing meeting. She said, “Armed intervention in response to North Korea’s belligerent actions will only cause further human tragedy and compound the suffering of the people there.  Caritas is giving priority through its programmes to children, women and older people who are the most affected. For several years, Caritas has been providing humanitarian assistance to the poorest in North Korea. It will continue to mobilise support and implement effective programmes in the areas of food distribution, health and education, together with local and regional partners. The global Caritas network works through its member, Caritas Korea, in coordinating all activities. Caritas sees humanitarian aid to the people of North Korea as a critical part of a long-term engagement with the country. Caritas has a vital role to play and invites other international organisations and Church initiatives to join efforts to assist the people of North Korea.

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