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  • Shania George

An Olive Branch from the UN to You

Pablo Picasso’s white dove for the congress party, the olive branch from Rome, origami paper cranes, white flags and making a ‘V’ hand sign; all these diverse objects and symbols from various parts of the world and different periods of time have one thing in common: peace. These are symbols of hope and reassurance to the world that hope to impact their audience in ways words cannot.

In 1981, the United Nations General Assembly was established and two decades later, 21st of September was designated as the International Day of Peace, to honour non-violence and cease all hostility between nations of the world. Every year the UN decides on a theme for the day, and this year its theme is ‘End Racism, Build Peace.’ According to the official UN website, this theme aims to end xenophobia, discrimination and intolerance which is apt considering the historic movements like #StopAsianHate campaign and the Black Lives Matter movement that shook the world in the past two years. The hate against Africans, Asians, and those of descent, which were more prominent in the recent centuries has now started slowly fading due to a common understanding of universal brotherhood. This year, the light on peace as imperative, especially due to the Russia-Ukraine war and it has even been stated on the UN website, “Achieving true peace entails much more than laying down arms. It requires the building of societies where all members feel that they can flourish. It involves creating a world in which people are treated equally.”

We need to unite as humans, regardless of race, gender or social status and only then can we thrive and develop into a species that can be truly called the ‘most advanced.’ It is only once we bridge the gap between us, that we can grow. Gandhiji has rightly said, “It is my conviction that nothing enduring can be built on violence.” Thus, keeping this in mind, make sure to visit the UN official website and learn about the history of peace on this 21st September!

‘End Racism, Build Peace’ poster

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