2020 Day of Peace

The time is now: Re-commit to Peace 

A shared statement by peacebuilding organizations 

International Day of Peace, 21 September 2020 

Peace is under threat. In 1945, the United Nations was founded to ‘save succeeding generations from the scourge of war.’ But the steady progress that has been made towards building, keeping and sustaining peace is now threatened. While COVID-19 and its economic effects have had a direct impact on human lives, some actions by governments and others are making things worse. Responses to crisis that increase violence, injustice and exclusion, that set aside ‘the dignity and worth of the human person’ and ‘the equal rights of men and women and of nations large and small,’ will exacerbate development losses and human suffering, leaving many behind. The lessons of the UN Charter are being forgotten. 

Our hearts go out to those suffering today, in the sober knowledge that this may turn out to be but a foretaste of the disruptions that may arise in the years to come, including from climate change and environmental degradation, and growing inequalities and exclusion. If we are to meet the challenges of tomorrow, we must recommit to peace today. 

Focus on peace, justice and inclusion, both during crises and longer-term. We must re-dedicate ourselves to the vision of a global partnership of all stakeholders to foster peaceful, just and inclusive societies, so clearly articulated in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This approach is not only the route to lasting gains in development, human rights and peace, but must be embraced as the foundation of an effective humanitarian and security response in times of crisis. 

As organizations devoted to building peace around the world, we call on the international community to take these steps: 

  • Mainstream peace in the response to COVID-19. It is time to explicitly embed people-centered and sustainable strategies for peace at the heart of the response to COVID-19. We call on the Secretary-General to issue guidance for the UN system to prioritize conflict-sensitive and risk-informed approaches in the planning and monitoring of all activities taken to address COVID-19, and to align these efforts with the relevant longer-term plans to foster peace, justice and inclusion within development frameworks. Furthermore, Member States should support allocating 5% of the funding for the COVID-19 response to ensuring that conflict sensitive and risk-informed approaches are mainstreamed. It is particularly important that support is given to fostering social resilience, including strengthening local, national and international mechanisms for addressing difference and grievances. Building peace is never more important than at times of crisis. 
  • Prioritize inclusion in analysis and action. Prioritizing the meaningful inclusion and public participation of all groups, including women and girls, youth, and local communities, is vital to our peace and development efforts. Recent months have starkly demonstrated the disproportionate impact of entrenched and systemic patterns of exclusion at times of crisis. Increases in gender-based violence and race-based abuses (as highlighted in the recent Human Rights Council resolution on people of African descent), are evidence of this. Additionally, civic space must be protected and guaranteed. Inclusion is just as important in the midst of crisis as in longer term efforts, and critical to developing more effective approaches that can have a lasting impact. 
  • Make space for building peace. We support the Secretary-General’s call for a global cease-fire to enable humanitarian access and make space for building peace. But governments and other international actors can do more to step aside from the machinery of war. Cease-fire efforts can be expanded to make the choice to avoid all forms of violent coercion. Military spending should be reduced, and nuclear weapons eliminated, freeing up critical resources to save lives and support the most vulnerable. Within countries, governments must avoid using state violence as a response to large-scale unemployment and displacement, and state and nonstate actors alike should eschew violence as a shortcut to achieving political and economic ends. 
  • Reaffirm multilateralism and international norms as a safeguard for the most vulnerable. At times of global crisis, in an environment of increasing fragility and fragmentation, it is vital to reaffirm international norms, to support responsible trade, reduce arms flows, promote constructive financial, tax and investment practices and bolster adherence to international human rights and humanitarian law. In crisis, more than ever, states should seek to uphold a rules-based system, the underpinning of an enabling environment that privileges the long-term development, peace and dignity of all people and communities. 

+Peace 

ACCORD 

ACT Alliance 

AFRICAN YOUTH ACTION NETWORK-AYAN 

Africans Rising for Justice, Peace and Dignity 

Agrupación de Familiares de Ejecutados Políticos - Chile 

All Anglophone Union for Peace and Development (AAUPD) 

Alliance for Conflict Transformation (ACT) 

Alliance for Peacebuilding 

Alyansa ng Kabataang Mindanao para sa Kapayapaan (AKMK) 

American Friends Service Committee - AFSC 

Asociación Española para el Derecho Internacional de los Derechos Humanos 

associat.tunisienne des droits de l enfant 

Association For Promotion Sustainable Development 

ASSOCIATION RAYONS DE SOLEIL 

Badhon Manob Unnayan Sangstha 

CAFSO-WRAG for Development 

Camp for Peace Liberia 

Canadian Friends Service Committee (Quakers) 

Care and Development Centre 

Carrefour Développement (CAR.D) 

Casa Generalizia della Societa del Sacro Cuore 

CENADEP 

Center on Conscience & War 

Centre de Défense des Droits de l'Homme et Démocratie 

centre des jeunes bolingo, CJB 

Centre d'études stratégiques et de sécurité internationale (CESSI) 

Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies 

Centre for Sustainable Development and Education in Africa 

Centre for Youth and Development 

Centre pour la Gouvernance (CEGO) 

CESAMORG 

CESSI 

CHARI-CONGO 

Church of the Brethren, Office of Peacebuilding and Policy 

Civil Society Platform for Peacebuilding and Statebuilding (CSPPS) 

Community Empowerment for Progress Organization-CEPO 

Community Empowerment for Progress Organization-CEPO, South Sudan 

Community of Christ (British Isles) 

Community of Christ Europe 

Comunidad Ecuménica Martin Luther King 

Conciliation Resources 

Congregation of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd 

Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation 

Denver Justice and Peace Committee (DJPC) 

Dirigentes de mi Comunidad ( DICOMU ) 

Epikeia Observatorio Universitario de Derechos Humanos 

Female Prisoners Support Trust 

Femme Affranchie pour le Développement Durable et la Protection de l'Environnement -FADPE- 

Forum des femmes oeuvrant pour la gouvernance des ressources naturelles en RDC "FFGRN" 

Forum National sur la Dette et la Pauvreté (FNDP) 

Franciscans International 

Friends Committee on National Legislation 

Friends World Committee for Consultation – World Office (Quakers) 

FriEnt-Working Group on Peace and Development 

Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa 

Gender Network and women's rights "GEDROFE" 

Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect 

Global Ministries of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and the United Church of Christ 

Global Network of Women Peacebuilders (GNWP) 

Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC) 

Global Peace and Development Organization 

Globethics.net 

Glokala Sjuhärad Association, Sweden 

Great Lakes Peacebuilding Initiative -GLPI 

Greenspring Development Initiative 

Helping Hand for Survivors 

Interfaith Forum for Peace Harmony and Solidarity 

International Alert 

International Center on Conflict & Negotiation 

International Civil Society Action Network (ICAN) 

International Federation for Peace and Sustainable Development 

Interpeace 

Inwelle Study and Resource Centre 

Jerusalem Peacebuilders 

Just Peace Advocates 

KENYA ECONOMIC YOUTH NETWORK (KEYNET) 

Loretto Community (Sisters of Loretto) 

Maison des Organisations de la Société Civile (MOSC) 

Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns 

Mennonite Central Committee United Nations Office 

Mindanao Peacebuilding Institute Foundation, Inc. 

Minnesota Peace Project 

MISERE, SORS! 

Modern Advocacy Humanitarian Social and Rehabilitation Association (MAHSRA) 

Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies 

MSU-Iligan Institute of Technology 

Nigerian Women Agro Allied Farmers Association. 

Nonviolent Peaceforce 

North Country Access to Health Care Committee 

Nova Scotia Voice of Women for Peace 

NYU Center on International Cooperation 

NYU Peace Research and Education Program 

Observatorio de Derechos Humanos de la Universidad de Los Andes 

Observatorio por el Cierre de la Escuela de las Américas - SOAW Chile 

Odbor za ljudska prava 

Office of Peace, Justice, and Ecological Integrity/Sisters of Charity of Saint Elizabeth 

Our Lady of Perpetual Help Initiative (OLPHI) 

Pacific Conference of Churches 

PartnersGlobal 

Pax Christi International 

Peace And Justice Alliance 

Peace Direct 

Peace Initiative Network 

PEACE WARRIORS ORGANISATION 

Peacifica 

Peckham Rights! 

Phoenix Nonviolence TruthForce 

Quaker Council for European Affairs (QCEA) 

Quaker Peace & Social Witness 

Quaker Service Australia 

Quaker Service Norway 

Quaker United Nations Office 

Quäker-Hilfe Stiftung 

REFADEC 

Regina Peace Council 

Regional Center for International Development Cooperation (RCIDC) 

Religions for Peace 

Religions for Peace International 

REPAOC 

Réseau "Jeunes dans le Monde pour la Paix" - RJMP/ASBL- 

RESEAU FEMMES ET PAIX 

RIKO (Council for International Conflict Resolution) 

Saferworld 

School of the Americas Watch (SOAWatch) 

Science for Peace Canada 

SCOFIELD ASSOCIATES 

Search for Common Ground 

SECURITAS CONGO 

SecurityWomen 

SEMA 

Sisters of Charity Federation 

Sisters of Charity of Nazareth Congregational Leadership 

Sisters of Charity of Nazareth Western Province Leadershp 

Sisters of Charity of Our Lady of Mercy 

Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace 

Social Economic and Governance Promotion Centre (SEGP) 

Solidarité avec les Victimes et pour la Paix-SOVIP 

Solutions for Humanity International (SFH) 

STOP FUELLING WAR 

swisspeace 

Talitha Project, Tonga 

The Anglican Communion 

The Carter Center 

The Cora di Brazzà Foundation 

The Graduate Institute of Peace Studies, Kyung Hee University (S. Korea) 

The Lutheran World Federation 

The Metta Center for Nonviolence 

The Peacebuilding Project 

The Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) in Australia 

The United Methodist Church - General Board of Church and Society 

Transparency, Accountability & Participation (TAP) Network 

Trippinz Care Inc 

Trippinz Care International Foundation 

Ukana West 2 Community Based Health Initiative (CBHI) 

Union des Amis Socio Culturels d'Action en Développement (UNASCAD) 

Unitarian Universalist Association 

United Church of Christ, Justice and Witness Ministries 

United Network of Youth for Peace and Diplomacy UNYPD 

Universal Rights Network 

VIVAT International 

War Prevention Initiative 

WASH-Net Sierra Leone 

Win Without War 

Women for Peace and Gender Equality Initiative 

Women in Alternative Action-WAA Cameroon 

Women's International League for Peace and Freedom WILPF/DRC 

World Federalist Movement - Canada 

World Federalist Movement/Institute for Global Policy (WFM/IGP) 

Youth and Small Holder Farmers Association. 

Youth for change initiative YOFCI 

Youth Partnership for Peace and Development 

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