To Celebrate the 21st September - UN Day of Ceasefire and Non Violence we are pleased to inform you of the public launch of our Group working towards creating a Ministry for Peace in Italy, thus joining the many other groups in Australia, Canada, Costa Rica, India, Japan, Nepal, Philippines, Solomon Islands, Uganda, UK, US. Ten other countries are also exploring the idea: Cameroon, Congo, Israel, Liberia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Palestine, Romania, Spain and Sri Lanka.

In 1999 All the countries at the UN agreed upon the Declaration and Programme of Action on a Culture of Peace. This called for everyone - governments, civil society, the media, parents, teachers, politicians, scientists, artists, NGO's the UN - to assume resonsability for taking action. But where are the results?

The goal of a Ministry for Peace is to reduce violence in all its forms and to convince people that the use of direct violence as a means to achieve ends is uncivilised and counter productive. Our program is educational and not party political. It is designed to foster a culture of peace and to embed non-violent methods and approaches into all our public insitutions, civil society, schools, the arts and sports.

A Ministry for Peace would be staffed by individuals skilled in helping others understand the efficacy of non-violent communication and in resolving conflicts non-violently. Its work would assist rather than replace that of other govenment departments.

We believe that the promotion of a Culture for Peace needs to start in the schools and ,while we acknowledge that there will always be conflicts in some form or another, what is important is how we deal with it. A Ministry for Peace Italy would assist the Ministry of Education to create programs in peacebuilding skills and how to transform conflicts in a peaceful way.

The initial aims of Ministry for Peace Italy are:
  • Strengthen our working group to include those interested.
  • Create a Peace Festival dedicated to 'Dialogue'.
  • Promote the teaching of peacebuilding skills in schools and society in general.
  • Promote the role of women in conflict revention and transformation (Art. 1325).
  • Continue to contribute actively to the Global Alliance and its aims.
  • Discuss the possibility of hosting a Summit of the Global Alliance in the future (next Summit 2007 Japan).
Internationally we are a member of the Global Alliance of Ministries for Peace/Departments of Peace working towards the creation of Ministries for Peace/Departments of Peace in all governments so that national Ministers may meet on a regular basis, especially during crises with a mandate for conflict prevention and an on going emphasis on reaching peace by peaceful means through studying the root causes of the conflict. The aims of the Global Alliance is to call upon governments of the world and civil societies everywhere to:
  • Develop necessary resources and infrastructures for resolving /transforming conflicts effectively by peaceful means.
  • Establish, train and develop civil peacebuilding services.
  • Incorporate conflict transformation and peacebuilding skills into school curicula from primary schools through University.
  • Actively engage youth, women, and communities to participate as equals in peacebuilding to ensure participation and representation of all.
  • Support and encourage coordinated efforts to gather lessons learned and best practice from eacebuilding experience around the world.
This worldwide camaign to establish Ministries for Peace/Departments of Peace in governments everywhere is gathering momentum. This is not surprising as there is a growing realisation that at the highest level of decision making the voice of the peacemakers must be heard, must be professionalised and institutionalised and given equal attention to every other concern.

In order to carry out our program we would welcome people to come forward to join our Working Group , we are currently in need of people with peacbuilding skills but all those who feel a strong desire to help take initiative forward are equally welcome. Everyone has something important to contribute.

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