On September 21st of each year, people from all over the world gather to commemorate the International Day of Peace, sometimes referred to as “Peace Day.” Established in 1981 through a unanimous United Nations resolution, this day serves as a universal reminder for humanity to prioritize peace over differences and actively contribute to fostering a Culture of Peace worldwide.
The United Nations General Assembly first introduced the International Day of Peace in 1981. It wasn’t until two decades later, in 2001, that the General Assembly took another unanimous vote, designating this day as a period dedicated to non-violence and cease-fire.
- 1981 – UN General Assembly Resolution passed
- 1983 – Commencement of annual reports
- 1996 – Seanad Éireann debate
- 2001 – Official date set at 21 September
The purpose of the International Day of Peace is to “commemorate and strengthen the ideals of peace within and among all nations and peoples.” Simply expressed, it seeks to make the world a more peaceful place for all of its citizens. Numerous facets of our lives are deeply impacted by peace. Each year, the United Nations selects a unique theme for this special day, such as “End racism: build peace” or “Climate action for peace.” These themes highlight that genuine peace can only be achieved when equality prevails and when we collectively address pressing issues like the climate emergency, which threatens the well-being of all.
World peace represents the aspiration for a harmonious state within and among all individuals and nations on our planet. On how to acquire this state, many cultures, religions, philosophies, and institutions give various interpretations. As we commemorate the International Day of Peace, we believe that by working together, we can build a world where everyone can experience peace as a reality rather than simply a pipe dream.