Press Releases

     

    SG/SM/9038
    1 December 2003

    BEST WAY TO REMEMBER THOSE LOST IN WAR IS TO
    “REDEDICATE OURSELVES TO THE CAUSE OF PEACE”,
    SECRETARY-GENERAL TELLS WORLD VETERANS FEDERATION

    NEW YORK, 28 November (UN Headquarters) -- Following is the message of Secretary-General Kofi Annan to the twenty-fourth General Assembly of the World Veterans Federation, to be held in Johannesburg, South Africa, on 1 December:

    I send my greetings to the veterans and victims of war who have gathered in Johannesburg for the twenty-fourth General Assembly of the World Veterans Federation.

    Yours is a unique grouping.  You bring together former belligerents, the enemies of yesterday, to reconcile and to become friends today, and to work for a peaceful tomorrow.

    Few speak with more authority on the need for peace than those, like you, who know the face of war.  That is why your work to promote disarmament, advance human rights, and strengthen peaceful settlement of international disputes is vital.  So too is the need for societies to take measures to rehabilitate former soldiers and integrate them into society, and to remember those who have been lost.

    I know that, among your number, you count former personnel of United Nations peacekeeping missions.  At United Nations Headquarters, we have just unveiled a memorial to those who have given their lives in the service of the Organization.  The inscription on the memorial is simple:  remember here those who gave their lives for peace.

    The best way to remember our dead, and indeed all those who have been lost in war, is to rededicate ourselves to the cause of peace and to the daily work so eloquently set out in the Charter of the United Nations:  the work of saving succeeding generations from the scourge of war.

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