“The World March for Peace and Nonviolence is an opportunity to join hands and think together for the good of all human beings. Immortality is only for those who work for human beings and their happiness, without discrimination. Let no one think that immortality can be reached through military heroism”, declared Hicham Hamdan, Ambassador of the Republic of Lebanon to Argentina, in his endorsement of the initiative by World without Wars, an organisation of the Humanist Movement.
The planetary march will start on the 2nd of October in New Zealand, and pass through more than 90 countries culminating on the 2nd of January, 2010 in Punta de Vacas, an outpost in the Andes mountains. The principle objective, according to the organisers, is to create consciousness of the need for disarmament of nuclear and conventional weapons, the end of wars and the overcoming of all kinds of violence; hunger and poverty being the most urgent. This initiative has already been endorsed by hundreds of organisations and renowned personalities, in addition to presidents and governments of various countries.
Through the organisation the Humanist Arab Centre (CAH), who are promoting the World March, the diplomat committed to pass on the proposal to the Lebanese Government. In addition he said that he would contact the organisers of pacifist groups, journalists and parliamentarians in his country, while commiting to call all the other Ambassadors of Arab countries in Argentina to request them to also endorse the World March for Peace and Nonviolence.
“The Ambassador asked us to include Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Kuwait on the route of the World March, a proposal that we are considering how to implement”, reported Celia Latuf, coordinator of the Humanist Arab Centre in Argentina, who added, “The World March will be publicised in all the events of the Arab Community in Argentina, starting with the Cultural Centre of Recoleta between the 13th to the 19th of April, which marks the Week of Arab Culture”. For Latuf, many possibilities could open up through the Lebanese Ambassador as his initiative can contribute to peace in the Middle East, a zone with a high level of violent conflict and possibilities of nuclear confrontation, with the most recent occurence for Lebanon being in June 2006 when Beirut was bombed by the Israeli army.
With a strong tone of denunciation, but with a strong emotion, the text of the endorsement of the Lebanese Ambassador highlights that Lebanese society “has lived in the consciousness of humanity as a country of beauty, civilisation and peace” and added that “in the last 25 years of the 20th century, it was transformed into a battle field, with conflicts and violence”.
For Hicham Hamdan, it is incomprehensible that these violent conflicts continue to go on: “we are still working to eliminate the consequences of war, but when I see wars in other countries, I don’t understand how the new generation accepts to go to war and die while their parents and grandparents have fought bitterly for them to have a free life and so they can live in peace”.
Finishing, he pointed out, “I could not be happy even if my country were a paradise while there are people dying in refugee camps or in boats escaping from hunger, poverty, terror from persecution or war in their countries.”