As the World Peace Conference began in Dhaka on Saturday, the president recalled the words of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman at the UN General Assembly in 1974.
The “total commitment to peace is born of the realisation that only an environment of peace would enable us to enjoy the hard-earned fruits of our national independence and to mobilise and concentrate all our energies and resources in combating the scourges of poverty, hunger, disease, illiteracy and unemployment”, Hamid quoted Bangabandhu as saying.
Unless the world unites on these matters and many others, it will not be possible to secure a safe and habitable world for future generations on an Earth already grappling with the impact of climate change, Hamid said.
Bangladesh knows the value of peace because fifty years ago, in the month of December, three million people made a supreme sacrifice for the independence of their motherland, he said.
“Therefore, we, as a people, have learned to value peace as the deepest aspiration of all human beings.”
“We cherish peace with great affection. We consider peace to be of crucial importance all over the world. We see peace as a fundamental human right. And we are committed to attain, sustain, promote and strengthen peace at all cost.”
Though the visitors to the conference come from faraway lands and represent cultures and values that may be different from those of Bangladesh, the ideal of peace is common to all, Hamid said.
“And we are committed to attain, sustain, promote and strengthen peace at all cost,” he said. “That is why we all joined here today. We have a common cause and I do not think any other cause could be nobler than this.”
“In order to do so, we must develop a fair international system for all the peoples of the world,” the president said. “We must end discriminations based on race, faith, colour, religion and ethnicity, and ensure equal opportunity for all.”
“We all know that peace is a public concept of harmony, friendship and the absence of conflict. Peace guarantees freedom from violence or fear between individuals or groups.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the weaknesses of our systems and has given us much to work towards in order to meet the numerous challenges and conflicts ahead, Hamid said.
The president noted that the World Peace Conference was a fitting capstone to 2021, the birth centenary of Bangabandhu, the Father of the Nation, and the golden jubilee of Bangladesh’s independence.
“I consider the World Peace Conference in Dhaka is a fitting tribute to all the peace-loving people in the world. If we can do anything to promote peace anywhere in the world, we would be happy to render our services.”
“We would like to see peace flourishing all over the world. I thank you all for joining the World Peace Conference.”