A campaign for one day of peace

Steve Baker MP discussing Peace One Day with Jude Law

TCC Director Steve Baker with Peace One Day Ambassador Jude Law

The Cobden Centre exists to promote social progress through honest money, free trade and peace. As you can see from those links, we have touched on each issue from our founding but, events being what they are, we have concentrated on honest money over the last year.

Our CEO, Dr Tim Evans, intends to deliver a step change in our activities as we move through 2011. In addition to deepening our work on money and banking, we will also develop our work on free trade and peace, making appointments to our team of Senior Fellows and our Advisory Board.

In that context, I was delighted to attend an event this week in Parliament held by Peace One Day and hosted by my colleague Nadhim Zahawi MP.

As Member of Parliament for Wycombe, I am acutely aware of the widespread consequences of armed conflict on individuals across the world. For example, many of my constituents hail from Kashmir and Pakistan and their extended families and friends continue to be directly affected by the conflicts in the region and their fallout. Many are of Sri Lankan descent and have lived through conflict there, often having lost loved ones.

The tragedies of violence around the world come home to my constituents day after day. For anyone serious about promoting human flourishing, peace must be a prerequisite and the initiation of violence anathema.

It was an incredible privilege to meet Peace One Day founder and Chairman Jeremy Gilley, as well as their Ambassador, Jude Law. From their website:

In 1999, preoccupied with questions about the fundamental nature of humanity and the most pressing issues of our time, filmmaker Jeremy Gilley launched Peace One Day and set out to find a starting point for peace. He had a mission: to document his efforts to establish the first ever annual day of global ceasefire and non-violence with a fixed calendar date.

Remarkably, two years on, he achieved his primary objective when the 192 member states of the United Nations unanimously adopted 21 September as an annual day of global ceasefire and non-violence on the UN International Day of Peace. We call that day Peace Day.

Astonishingly, for three consecutive years, Peace Day has been observed in Afghanistan on a national scale.

To learn more, please watch Peace One Day’s introductory film:

I was humbled to learn of the achievements of Jeremy Gilley and Peace One Day. As The Cobden Centre sets out to grow in new ways, I hope we may deliver even a fraction of that contribution made by this inspiring man and organisation towards human flourishing.