Amidst Global Turmoil, Citizens Unite for Peace: 11th Annual Peace Walk in 50 countries

There were outdoor exhibitions about the history of war and conflicts, outlining the impact war has had on humanity.

As conflicts erupt worldwide, threatening global security and coexistence, hope of peace emerges from citizens. In May 2024, citizens across all continents will join hands for HWPL’s 11th Annual Commemoration of the Declaration of World Peace and Peace Walk, organized by a UN-affiliated NGO Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light (HWPL). Themed “Communication for Global Citizenship of Reconciliation and Tolerance” this event aims to cultivate and share a global culture of peace.

A Korean War veteran addressed the importance of achieving peace to the audience [Photo: HWPL]

The flagship event commenced on May 25th at the Peace Gate of Seoul Olympic Park sponsored by the Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs of Korea. In about 50 countries, the Peace Walks are complemented by diverse peace-building activities. The worldwide events include landmark walks reflecting each nation’s unique character, alongside peace performances, video screenings, photo exhibitions, poster drawings, sports activities, bazaars, and volunteer opportunities. Tree planting ceremonies and “free hugs” initiatives further emphasize the spirit of unity and environmental well-being.

There were outdoor exhibitions about the history of war and conflicts, outlining the impact war has had on humanity. Visitors will also be able to experience what it was like being a refugee in Korea in the 1950s and partaking in other experience booths.

This annual event commemorates the 2013 proclamation of the Declaration of World Peace at the Peace Gate in Seoul Olympic Park with 30,000 global youth advocating peace. This declaration outlines the roles of individuals from all walks of life in achieving peace and urges a united global effort.

At the 10th annual commemoration last year Chairman Lee Man-hee said, “Since we pledged to work together for world peace 10 years ago, we have been calling for peace all over the world. We have advocated that peace should be taught at home and at school, and that everyone should become messengers of peace.” He also emphasized, “Everyone should be one under the title of peace and work together to create a good world and make it a legacy for future generations. This is what we need to do in this era in which we live.”

HWPL recently issued a statement on the Israel-Iran conflict and highlighted the devastating impact on civilians. “Organizations worldwide, in alliance with HWPL as peace solidarity, urge Iran and Israel to put a stop to the acts of aggression immediately and to come forward for conversations to usher in peace,” the statement said.