This year, as we commemorate the 70th anniversary of the United Nations,
the International Day of Non-Violence has special importance.
At a time of escalating conflicts, violent extremism, displacement and humanitarian need, the courage and determination of Mahatma Gandhi, whose birthday we celebrate today, is an inspiration for us all.
Gandhi showed the power of peacefully opposing oppression and hatred.
He showed how cooperation and tolerance can prevails over injustice. He demonstrated the great value of the rule of law in breaking vicious circles of vengeance.
The United Nations stands for the peaceful resolution of disputes and for mutual respect across culture, faith and other lines that might divide.
The International Decade for the Rapprochement of Cultures, first proposed
by UNESCO for the period 2013 – 2022, has generated a wide range of creative projects that demonstrate the power of diversity and dialogue as forces for peace.
The newly 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development can also point the way towards reducing violence. A more sustainable world will be a safer world.
On this year’s International Day of Non-violence, let us recall the achievements of Mahatma Gandhi — and renew our commitment to non-violence and lives of dignity for all.