Posted by peacedevelopmentnetwork on October 21, 2008
Kenya Global Peace Festival Celebration & World Food Day
October 16th 2008, 43 Lancaster Gate
Joseph Mingala and Doreen Oganga
The co-MC, Kenyan Jacob Mingala, expressed that while Kenya was the ‘cradle of civilisation’ it had many problems to find peace. Doreen Oganga, who was also MC for the evening, introduced the evening saying ‘I saw the banner of the Global Peace Festival and the river Nairobi clean up. I was there just after the presidential elections. I heard the fighting. Poor people are paid to do terrible things. As it was Global Debt Week, Robin Marsh spoke of the national debt of Kenya, largely created by a corrupt former President, that has inhibited progress to fulfilling the Millennium Development Goals. Debt campaigners want to have Kenya’s debt cancelled.
Tim Miller had attended the Global Peace Festival in Kenya. He explained that the ‘Nairobi’ river means ‘cool clean water’ but it was so thick with rubbish you could walk on it. The clean up, inspired by the Global Peace Festival, will continue in the future. One stretch of the river was completely clean after the service project. Crops were already being planted alongside the river. Dave Anderson MP from the UK and a local MP planted trees with a number of the activists. The project was supposed to be a catalyst for political action as a service project alone would not solve the situation.
Humanity as one family has huge implications for human rights. In the US it was struggles over civil rights that led to civil war. The GPF’s slogan ‘one family under God’ means that we have equality irrespective of colour, nationality or faith. He emphasised the result of the Global Peace Festivals occurring around the world drawing attention to the issues that needed to be resolved to create a world that is truly equal and for a need for a spirit of public service. (The UK Global Peace Festival – November 22nd ExCel Centre London www.globalpeacefestival-uk.org)
Hearts to Africa Mrs Simone Morris & Ms Samantha Chase
Three Ambassador for Peace awards were presented, for those who had been epitomising that spirit. Two hard working members of ‘Hearts to Africa’ for the last 7 years Mrs Simone Morris & Ms Samantha Chase were given awards by Samuel Burke, Dr Raheem Khan, Tim Miller and Margaret Ali.
Mrs Roshen Ahmed
Mrs Roshen Ahmed received an Ambassador for Peace award for her long service through the Isha Foundation. She had grown up in Kenya but spoke of Isha foundation’s service work in India and teaching agricultural techniques in Sierra Leone.
October 16th is World Food Day, first proclaimed in 1979 by the Conference of the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). The aim of the Day is to heighten public awareness of the world food problem and strengthen solidarity in the struggle against hunger, malnutrition and poverty. Michelle Goldberg spoke of the role organic foods in solving the foods crisis. Human beings intestines, she said, are not designed for meat eating. Too much land is being used to grow grains that are feeding cattle so that people can eat them. We would all have sufficient food if we utilised food from the sea and ate healthier diets.
Michelle Goldberg: Eco-Village Urban Initiative
For More Photos
You Tube http://uk.youtube.com/user/PeaceDevelopmntNetwk
UK Global Peace Festival November 22nd 2008 – ExCel Centre
For More Information www.globalpeacefestival-uk.org
Posted in Peace and Development | Tagged: Africa, Ambassador for Peace award, Development, Federation, Global Peace Festival, MDGs, peace, Peace and Development, Universal, Universal Peace Federation, UPF | 1 Comment »
Posted by peacedevelopmentnetwork on October 14, 2008
Last night we held a meeting entitled ‘Perspectives on Iraq’ to hear the views of those Iraqis who understood something of the current situation in Iraq.
We were fortunate to have Dave Anderson MP who is the Joint President of the Labour Friends of Iraq and a long time official of the Trade Union, Unison. Dave Anderson expressed that he had been opposed to the 2003 invasion of Iraq but had become involved in the Labour Friends of Iraq. He had accepted an invitation to visit Iraq from the Iraqi Trade Union movement who, he discovered, had welcomed the invasion as a liberation from Sadaam Hussein. He felt the most important point was to listen to the Iraqi people in how to help them solve their problems. Dave had taken Iraqis to the North East to his constituency to visit business people and to show them how the political and civil system worked. He said, “we’re a helping hand” from which Iraq can gain a lot but also we have a lot to learn from Iraq which is, after all, the cradle of civilisation.
Talar Salih Faiq, a UK representative of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), an autonomous region in Iraq since 1991. She explained that it is a secular Government that observed human rights and that 27% of the politicians in the KRG are women, the highest in the whole Middle East. There were some critical comments from the audience about corruption in the KRG to which Talar replied that every nation in the world has to struggle against corruption. The Kurdish people have suffered a great deal and are only now coming into development. It will take some time to become a mature democracy with refined systems against corruption. She, and all she knew, were doing all they could to help the people of the KRG and the rest of Iraq.
Gary Kent, who is the Parliamentary Adviser to the Kurdish Regional Government and Director of the Labour Friends of Iraq, said he wanted to listen to the Iraqi people themselves. Dave Anderson and he had wanted a ‘warts and all’ view of Iraq. The Kurdish people are the largest people without their own nation. They have every reason to be bitter after their great suffering. Even so the KRG have big plans including a huge airport that will have the 5th largest runway in the world. He expressed that contact with the wider world and in particular investment is very important both for Iraq and for the KRG.
Sadiq Al-Wohali had just returned from a visit to Iraq part sponsored by the UK Football Academy. He had been in 2007 amid all the violence to train football coaches in Sadr city when 40 people graduated his course. This year he returned to train coaches in several more areas around Iraq. Surprisingly he said there are several football teams in Sadr city including a women’s team! Aziz Al-Naib drew attention to the plight of refugees within Iraq and talked of his upcoming visit to make a documentary film.
One of the final comments of the night was from Dave Anderson. He emphasised his determination to continue to help the people of Iraq. ‘I will work with whoever you vote into power. If someone is not good you have the right to work to get them voted out. That’s the great thing about democracy.’
Dave Anderson MP, Aziz Al-Naib, Robin Marsh, Talar Faiq Salih, Gary Kent
Posted in Peace and Development | Tagged: children of Abraham, democracy, Development, equality, Fairness, faith, football coaching in Iraq, free media, human rights, Iraq, KRG, Kurdistan, Labour Freinds of Iraq, religious dialogue, Sadaam Hussein, Sadr city, Trade Unions in Iraq | Leave a Comment »
Posted by peacedevelopmentnetwork on October 5, 2008
Mongolia and the Ninth Millennium Development Goal
Posted by jonathanfryer on Saturday, 27th September, 2008
World leaders have been in New York this week, discussing progress in achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The sad fact is that there is no way that many poor countries are going to reach their targets by 2015. Moreover, with a few notable exceptions, including Britain I’m pleased to say, rich countries have failed to live up to the promises they made at the 2005 Gleneagles G8 Summit. The MDGs, for those who need reminding, are, in brief, (1) ending poverty and hunger, (2) universal education, (3) gender equality, (4) child health, (5) maternal health, (6) combatting HIV/AIDS, (7) environmental sustainability and (8) global partnership.
Last night, at a reception and seminar at the Universal Peace Federation in London, I learnt that Mongolia, intriguingly, has unilaterally added a ninth MDG to its programme: strengthening human rights and fostering democratic governance. Speakers including the Mongolian Ambassador, Bulgaa Altangerel, John Grogan MP (Chair of the All-Party parlianmentary group on Mongolia) and Dr Nancy Tokola, formerly Visiting Professor for Biomedical Ethics at the Health Services University of Mongolia, outlined some of the extraordinary advances this previously Communist Soviet satellite state has made over the past decade. The capital Ulan Baatur hosted a huge peace festival earlier this month, about which we were shown a short video. And the government is busy promoting Ghengis Khan not as the bloodthirsty vandal he has been seen in the West but as the founder of stable government and administration. As Mongolia is one of only three Asian countries I have never visited (the others being North Korea and East Timor), I’m now itching to see for myself the reality behind the hype!
Links: http://www.mongoliatourism.gov.mn and http://www.globalpeacefestival-uk.org
Posted in Peace and Development | Tagged: Ambassador for Peace award, Development, Federation, Genghis Khan, Global Peace Festival, Jonathan Fryer, MDGs, Ninth MDG, peace, Peace and Development, Universal, Universal Peace Federation, UPF | Leave a Comment »