The Words of the Marion Family
Moscow, Russia -- The annual conference of UPF-Eurasia on "Pressing Issues of Integration and Building the Culture of Peace in Eurasian Nations" took place in Moscow on April 9. One hundred and twenty delegates from seven nations acknowledged the importance of peacemaking efforts in the region with its conflicts and critical situations. Representatives from Baltic and Caucasus nations sent their reports and participated in the conference through the Internet.
Based on core and universal values and moral principles, the participants addressed root causes of conflicts. They expressed their conviction that reconciliation and harmony could create a foundation for developing peacemaking activity and consolidating relations of harmony and cooperation between cultures and religions.
The program took place on the 21st anniversary of the visit to Moscow by UPF founder, Dr. Sun Myung Moon, April 8–13, 1990. Accompanied by a large group of world leaders and media representatives, Dr. Moon and his wife met President Mikhail Gorbachev and Soviet officials. Dr. Moon shared his vision of a harmonious world in the era after the end of the Cold War. His new system of values could unite individualism and collectivism transcending the free market and socialist systems.
Twenty-one years after those events, the Eurasian conference appealed to the community to create a global peace civilization, a society where the people of all religious, racial, and national backgrounds can co-exist in an atmosphere of harmony. Nowadays, the Eurasian chapter of the Universal Peace Federation puts into practice this vision through its practical activity in 15 countries of the former Soviet Union as well as in Mongolia and China. The UPF Ambassadors for Peace do their utmost to bring positive changes into all spheres of human activity, including politics, religion, economics, education, etc.
The conference was opened with the welcoming address of the president of the International Grass-roots Diplomacy Center, the Honored Artist of Russia, Dr. Vladimir Frolov. He, as well as the speakers who took the floor after him: Ambassador for Peace from Belarus, Dr. Anatoly Trushkevich; former Deputy Minister of Education from Moldova, Vlad Chibukchiu; and vice-president of the All-Ukraine Association "In the Footsteps of the Women Myrrhophores"*, Nina Kurbatskaya, called upon the Ambassadors for Peace and grassroots organizations of the former Soviet Republics to promote cooperation and interaction in Eurasia.
Among these speakers, scientists from the Russian Academy of Sciences, practitioners, municipal workers, and activists from grassroots organizations of Siberia, the Urals, Karelia, and Moscow addressed the gathering.
The keynote was delivered by Jacques Marion, Secretary General of UPF-Eurasia. He spoke on "Interfaith and International Harmony: Urgent Priorities, Goals and Objectives of the Universal Peace Federation" urging the participants to practice peace in their minds, families, and communities and to promote programs of character education and strengthening marriage and family.
In his detailed address, the Chairp of UPF-Eurasia, Eiji Tokuno, pointed out that being an organization in special consultative status with the UN Economic and Social Council, the Universal Peace Federation supports the UN Millennium Development Goals as well as UN commemorative days such as the International Women's Day, International Day of Families, International Day of Peace.
A number of speeches concerned the South Caucasus Peace Initiative, the Baltic Dialogue project for improving relations between countries of the former Soviet Union, and the project of building a tunnel under the Bering Strait between Russia and the USA that would connect East and West as a symbolical step towards world peace.
Special recognition was given to members of the Peace Council from Ryazan, Irina Shirshova and Lyubov Chistyakova; the president of the Inter-regional Association of Moscow University Graduates and head of the organization "Do Good", Vasily Pugachev; a leading expert on relations with national and religious communities of the Kondopoga region in Karelia, Olga Meshkova; and vice-president of Cultural and Educational Foundation "True Values", Sergei Dvoryanov upon receiving certificates of Ambassadors for Peace.
After the main program the participants in the conference continued working on the resultant documents and writing the Eurasian Call for Peace.
* "Women myrrophores" refers to the three Marys who went to the sepulchre after Jesus' burial, bearing myrrh and spices.