Japan 2007

clipboard-im-11The 3rd Global Summit for Ministries and Departments of Peace took place September 21-26 in Kisarazu and Tokyo, Japan. This extraordinary event began on the International Day of Peace and Global Ceasefire declared by the UN. It featured 21 country delegations*, representing both civil society and parliamentarians, from all five continents, including Nepal, which became the second country after the Solomon Islands to form a Ministry of Peace, and Rwanda, a country that experienced genocide in 1994. The event was sponsored by the Global Alliance for Ministries and Departments of Peace numbering more than 25 countries and hosted by its Japanese member, Japan United for Ministry of Peace (JUMP).

Ministries and Departments of Peace are dedicated to creating a culture of peace within and between countries where the Ministers of Peace would meet to reduce violence and war through non-violent conflict resolution.

img-1095A principal purpose of this Summit in Japan was to support the peaceful nature of the Japanese Constitution, now under review, and to advocate that all countries create peace constitutions.

Over the four days of meeting, the Summit heard reports from each country, carried out a series of intensive training towards the formation of Ministries and Departments of Peace within their respective governments, and resolved to witness the creation at least two more ministries by the next Summit, with Costa Rica as the most likely to declare. “This summit clipboard-im-13empowered each one of the participants and gave the Global Alliance the power to go forward,” said Yumi Kikuchi, founder and chair of JUMP.

At the summit the Africa Alliance for Peace emerged, initiated by delegates from Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa and Uganda.

The Global Alliance calls for structures in governments and civil society that support a culture of peace, working together with all sectors in each country, especially youth, towards that goal.

*Countries represented were: Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Costa Rica, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, Nepal, New Zealand, Pakistan, Palestine, the Philippines, Romania, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa, Uganda, UK and USA.