The World Alliance of Religions’ Peace (WARP) Summit 2014 was attended by about 2,000 guests including former and current heads of state, religious leaders, youth, women, and journalists from around the world and its outdoor events (World Peace Walk and Pre-event) by about 30,000 people. It was a summit of an unprecedented scale, where all participants came together and made promises that laid the foundation for world peace. Notably, former and current heads of state and religious leaders showed their determination to realize world peace by signing the Agreement to Propose the Enactment of International Law for the Cessation of Wars and World Peace and the Unity of Religions Agreement respectively.
This year’s 1st Annual Commemoration of the WARP Summit was attended by about 300 people. The attendees included not only those in the various fields that had participated in the summit of the previous year but also international law experts. In order to create an institutional framework for the realization of peace, a draft convention on the cessation of war was presented. This presentation was witnessed by the youth, women, and journalists, as each group holds an important role in achieving peace.
Below are the four highlights of the 1st Annual Commemoration of September 18th World Alliance of Religions’ Peace Summit, which took place on 17-19 of September 2015 in Seoul and the outskirts of Seoul, Republic of Korea.
1. Moving forward - International law experts modify the draft convention on the cessation of war
To fundamentally resolve international armed conflicts, HWPL invited international law experts, as suggested by Chairman Man Hee Lee, and presented the Convention on the Renunciation and Cessation of War and International Armed Conflicts, which was drafted by members of the HWPL Peace Advisory Council. Through discussion and modification by the HWPL International Law Peace Committee, the draft convention will be improved into a complete and applicable international convention. Furthermore, HWPL aims to send the final convention to heads of state around the world and have it ratified, and to go through the deliberative process of the UN so that the convention will be fully adopted and implemented. Also, it was proposed that UN agencies should monitor and oversee the enforcement of the convention by each state. The convention will include provisions on inter-religious conflict as well.
At the afternoon session of the international law conference, Chairman Lee emphasized that “our future generations can inherit peace only if the international law experts do their part,” and further requested them to “make good laws to make the world a better place.” Moved by Chairman Lee’s earnest appeal, the international law experts suggested setting a specific schedule for drafting and finalizing the convention.
-Launching the HWPL International Law Peace Committee
This day, twelve international law experts including Dr. Fathi Kemicha (former member of the UN International Law Commission), Prof. Ibrahim Aljazy (President of the International Law Association, Jordanian Branch, and former Minister of State for Legal Affairs of Jordan), and Prof. Enver Hasani (former President of the Constitutional Court of Kosovo) were appointed as members of the HWPL International Law Peace Committee. They pledged to work together for the implementation of an international convention on the cessation of war. As the first step for this purpose, the participants discussed practical ways to draft the most essential provisions based on the draft convention that HWPL prepared in advance.
2. Inter-religious conference for resolving religious conflict
During the HWPL World Alliance of Religions’ Peace (WARP) Office Presentation Meeting and Religious Leaders’ Conference, the role that religious people hold in the peace movement and the current state of the religious world were addressed. The HWPL WARP Office is a gathering of religious leaders and scholars where they study religious texts and realize that peace can be achieved in the religious world only through religious unity and the answer to peace is within the Creator who gives life to this earth. To find that answer along with people of all religious backgrounds, HWPL began to hold dialogue sessions at HWPL WARP Offices for comparing religious texts. As of September 11th 2015, 104 offices have been established in 53 countries. This day’s session stressed the role and importance of religious figures in achieving world peace and further instilled in each participant a sense of responsibility and commitment to world peace through the unity of religions.
3. Establishing roles of the youth and women in the direction of the implementation process of the international convention
Chairman Lee addressed the importance of the youth and women in the implementation of the international convention on the cessation of war. He stressed that they should raise their voices to monitor the implementation process of the convention. For this purpose, the IWPG and IPYG presented the Statement to Urge for the Implementation of an International Convention on the Cessation of War, which all participants signed to strengthen their determination. A worldwide online signature campaign will be launched soon as a means of implementing and expanding the project. Ms. Nam Hee Kim, the chairwoman of the IWPG, said in her speech that, “When the ability of international law experts, heavenly wisdom of HWPL, and work of the youth and women come together, all wars on earth will be brought to an end. Along with all women of the world, members of the IWPG will support the work of international law experts.”
4. Discussing the mission of journalists for peace
A total of 17 journalists from 13 media organizations in 14 countries attended the 1st Annual Commemoration of the WARP Summit. During the press conference on the 17th and HWPL Media Forum on the 18th, they shared the publicity work they have done as HWPL Publicity Ambassadors and discussed the mission of journalists in achieving peace. The journalists in attendance, who swiftly deliver the news of peace to the world, said that issues that the media of each country face should be resolved for such good news to be spread more widely. Also, they brought up the necessity of creating various TV and radio programs to arouse the youth’s interest in peace. Furthermore, they suggested that media coverage on international law that the public can easily understand is needed.
For the 1st Annual Commemoration of the WARP Summit, high-tech filming equipment including helicopter cameras were used to broadcast historical moments where prominent leaders discussed world peace, enabling over 30,000 people in 60 countries to watch them live online. On the 19th, the last day of the event, “Inside WARP Summit,” a newsletter that introduces about the programs of the first day, was provided to each participant and delivered the news regarding the opening ceremony and each session. This event was more than just an international peace conference; it was a harmonious combination of culture and technology that took the cultural events to the next level.