Important Facts For Prelims
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International Day of Peace 2022
- 22 Sep 2022
- 5 min read
Why in News?
Each year the International Day of Peace is observed around the world on 21st September.
- Theme for 2022: End racism. Build peace.
What are the Key highlights Related to the International Day of Peace?
- The United Nations (UN) General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, through observing 24 hours of non-violence and cease-fire.
- Background: The International Day of Peace was established in 1981 by the United Nations General Assembly.
- In 2001, the General Assembly unanimously voted to designate the Day as a period of non-violence and cease-fire.
- Symbol of International Peace Day:
- The United Nations Association of Japan donated the Peace Bell in 1954. It has become customary to ring the bell twice a year: on the first day of spring, at the Vernal Equinox, and on September 21st, International Day of Peace.
International Day of Non-Violence
- The International Day of Non-Violence is observed on 2nd October, the birthday of Mahatma Gandhi.
- It was established by the UNGA in 2007 to "disseminate the message of non-violence, including through education and public awareness".
What are the Various Challenges to Global Peace?
- Rise in Racism: Black Americans earn 25% less than their white counterparts.
- Black Americans are twice as likely to be jobless than white Americans.
- Black women are three to four times more likely to suffer pregnancy-related deaths than white women at similar levels of income and education.
- Global Unrests: According to the World Population Review, 8 countries including Afghanistan, Yemen, Syria, Turkey, Somalia, Iraq, Mexico and Libya suffered at least 1,000 deaths each (mainly civilians) through militarised attacks and battles in 2019.
- Russia-Ukraine War: The war in Ukraine has led to a cost-of-living crisis. An estimated 1.6 billion people are exposed to at least one dimension of the crisis-food, energy and finance.
- Refugee Crisis: According to the UN Refugee Agency, 79.5 million were displaced at the end of 2019, due to armed conflicts, persecution and other reasons.
- Role of Global Powers: The USA, Russia and China are required to uphold peace and international harmony being the permanent members of the UN Security Council. However, on the contrary, they have been found to fuel instability in order to achieve geopolitical hegemony. Examples:
- The tragedy in Yemen, which the UN has declared as the world’s worst humanitarian disaster, is the outcome of indiscriminate attacks by the U.S.-backed coalition of Saudi Arabia and the UAE, whose geopolitical goal is to counterbalance Iran.
- Libya’s descent into chaos is the product of the active involvement of mercenaries and weapons pumped in by Russia and the USA-allied Gulf Arab monarchies to push back Turkey’s influence.
- China’s hegemonic expansionism against its neighbours and its ‘new Cold War’ with the U.S. have significantly raised risks of military clashes in Asia.
- New Power Tussle: The conflict and competition between the powerful countries, like the USA-China New Cold War is also going on, risking global peace.
- Pandemic and Climate Crisis: With the rise of extreme climate events around the globe and spread of pandemics such as Covid-19 have posed a new concern that may directly and indirectly affect global peace through lack of access to resources, health and education, displacement etc.
On the International Day of Peace, the unjust structure which privileges great powers and permits their ghastly machinations should be diagnosed and challenged. Intellectuals, social movements and responsible states should prioritise struggling for an equitable world order.