Feb 6, 2024. Members of the 3rd World March core team in Bangladesh invited Pressenza and some foreign observers to a virtual meeting as they discussed their plans for the 3rd World March for Peace and Non-violence in Bangladesh.

It was a virtual meeting but it was so inspiring to see and meet the core team of humanists from Bangladesh who are preparing plans and, actively working and organizing activities, to hear what they have been doing to welcome the 3rd WM base team in their country.

To send a strong, clear signal that a world without wars and violence is not just possible but essential, crucial, necessary, and important for humanity to move forward toward a truly humanized world, Bangladeshi humanists have been passionately preparing for the 3rd World March to enter their country as it travels through the world, starting in San Jose, Costa Rica, on October 2, 2024.

“We are organizing the 3rd World March for Peace & Nonviolence five years after the 2nd World March (2019-2020), which lasted 159 days and 15 years after the 1st World March which was in 2009-2010, for 93 days, and traveled through 97 countries on five continents. In the face of the apparent regression of humanity, it is urgent to make the voice of those of us on every continent who want a world without wars and without violence to be heard and strengthened.”— World March Core Team.

The plans being envisioned and worked on by the Bangladesh team are indeed something to look forward to. The overall plan is to organize events before the World March team arrives, while the WM team is in the country, and even after they pass through and they leave for the next country along their route.

Before the World March Team Arrives in Bangladesh:

The team plans to organize an Online Writing & Painting Competition. The theme? How the Students Feel and Want to See a World Without Wars and Violence. There will be three categories: 1) High School Level (Age 12-16 Years) 2) College Level (Age 17-18 Years) and, 3)c)University Level (Age 18-24 Years)

Awareness campaigns will be launched and conducted by distributing leaflets, organizing rallies, picture exhibitions, and seminars about the ongoing violence in society, between countries and races.

Third is a drive to collect signatures from the public, a Signature Collection for Peace & Nonviolence, to show how many people feel the urgent need to end all wars and violence on the planet.

And, online archive maintenance is in the works to keep records of everything being done to support the cause for peace and non-violence. A website is being developed as a source of information about the 3rd World March.

While the WM Team is in Bangladesh:

The base team will take part in activities being planned in three cities, targeting three universities to bring the message of peace and non-violence to students and the youth as well as the intelligentsia of the country who can possibly serve as influencers of public opinion.

In Dhaka, prize-giving ceremonies among the winners of the Online Writing & Painting Competition will be held at Dhaka University. The team envisions colorful rallies with banners, festoons, horses, and band parties and will hold cultural programs with songs and poetry. A meeting of the WM base team with concerned ministers and the Chairman of the Human Rights Commission is being planned to take place in Dhaka.

In Savar, the WM base team will be met with more colorful rallies with banners, festoons, horses and band parties, and, cultural programs of song and poetry at the heart of the Jahangir Nagar University.

And in Khulna, it’s the Khulna University of Science & Technology where the colorful rallies and cultural programs will be held.

After the WM Team will Travel in Bangladesh and Leaves:

The online archive will be maintained. The awareness campaign to work for peace and nonviolence will be continued by forming groups and teams in the different universities, organizing weekly meetings, and maintaining them with proper coordination. Committees can be formed to work with the Global Humanist Forum perspectives.

As recounted and shared, six committees were formed, and members were designated to properly organize the World March Program of Bangladesh:

1. Materials & IT Support Team: Shahed Ullah, Reaz Uddin, Mizanur Rahman Pasha, Sarwar Islam

2. Communication & Invitation Team: Sheikh Arif, Shamsul Haque Basunia, Ayub Ansary, Kawser, Maruf, Linda, Shika Akter.

3. Logistics Team: Mizanur Rahman Pasha, Salim Reza, Fahad Momtazi, Murad.

4. Cultural Team: Shamsuddoha, G Mawla Hiron, Zia, Biru, Sabrina.

5.Virtual Completion Team: Nazrul Khoka, Babu, Tuhin & Khalil.

6. Finance Team: Nazrul Islam Jashim, Zahirul Islam, Russel Chowdhury, Shahed Ullah, Mizanur Rahman Talukder Pasha, Sheikh Arif, Shamsuddoha, Salim Reza, Ayub Ansary.

To start activities, an initial fund has been created with each active member donating 1000 Taka.

“We are at the end of a dark period in history and nothing will ever be the same as before. Little by little, the dawning of a new day will come. Cultures will begin to understand one another; the peoples will experience a growing yearning for progress for all, understanding that progress for the few ends up being progress for no one. Yes, there will be peace, and out of necessity, it will be understood that the outline of a universal human nation is taking shape.

 “In the meantime we, the unheard, will work from today on, all over the world, to put pressure on the decision-makers, to disseminate the ideals of peace based on the methodology of nonviolence so as to prepare the way for the new times.”

Silo (2004)

 — From the Manifesto of the 3rd World March for Peace and Nonviolence

In Bangladesh as well as in other countries around the world and in the Asia Pacific, the 3rd World March for Peace and Non-violence is moving forward, thanks to the efforts of humanists and peacemakers fueled by deep-felt aspirations to humanize the earth, the world that we all share.

The World March is being organized to put pressure on countries to gradually cut their arms budgets and put more emphasis on protecting the earth, and eradicating hunger and disease, in the face of massive damage and loss of life due to wars. Anyone who is against war and violence can be a part of the World March. https://en.theworldmarch.org/

This report has been made possible thanks to the help of the Bangladesh World March core team members.