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Mayors for Peace Representation in the 5th UCLG World Congress in Bogota

October 12-15, 2016
Report from Granollers, Catalonia, Spain

From October 12 to 15, the city of Bogota hosted the 5th World Congress of United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) , the World Summit of Local and Regional Leaders.

The Summit titled “Local Voices for a Better World” gathered over 5,000 representatives of towns, cities, metropolises and regions, civil society, the business world and academia to discuss the main dynamics that local representatives confront in their daily work.

Mayors for Peace was represented in the Congress by Granollers and Mexico City, both of whom are vice president cities of Mayors for Peace.

The plenary sessions and the political dialogue of the Summit have been based on the main issues of the Global Agenda of Regional Governments for the 21st century: local and regional governments stronger and more transparent, the new urban Agenda and its funding, culture as a motor for urban transformation, economic and environmental sustainable local policies or the promotion of peace and solidarity. The Summit adopted “The Bogota Commitments and the Bogota Action Agenda”. The Bogota Commitment calls for “Action at local and country level to govern in partnership and build governance capabilities to that end, aiming to co-create cities and territories that preserve the Right to the City of all inhabitants, to adapt production and consumption patterns for a sustainable future, to share and protect the commons, and to foster heritage, creativity, diversity, understanding and peace.”

Responsibility of cities in the promotion of peace

Mayor Josep Mayoral of Granollers, represented Mayors for Peace and introduced its activities in one of the dialogues of the Summit. Based on the tragic wartime experience of Granollers, Mayor Mayoral highlighted the responsibility of cities to work for the promotion of peace and coexistence in solidarity with other cities that are victims of violence and armed conflicts. Referring to the campaign slogan of Mayors for Peace "Cities Are Not Targets," he emphasized that citizens are the main victims in times of conflicts.

Recalling that nuclear weapons are the only weapons of mass destruction that have not yet been banned, Mayor Mayoral stressed the need for support to achieve an agreement for a nuclear weapons convention. He also introduced the commitment of Mayors for Peace to work for the achievement of SDG# 16: Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels.

Mayor Mayoral also spoke about the commitment of thousands of citizens from all over the world to accompany the peace process in Colombia, because the cities are committed to building a fairer world with greater solidarity. Support for the peace process in Colombia has been highlighted in the "Statement of local governments to support the peace process in Colombia", which was signed by Mexico City and Granollers among others, and submitted to the General Assembly for its approval.

Collaboration with the World Forum on Urban Violence and Education for Coexistence and Peace

Mayor Mayoral also participated in the preparatory workshop of the “World Forum on Urban Violence and Education for Coexistence and Peace", promoted by the cities of Madrid and Paris, to be held in the capital of Spain in the spring of 2017. This is an event that will be attended by networks of cities, international organizations and representatives of social movements. Granollers, as a vice president and lead city of Mayors for Peace and one of the International Association of Educating Cities, has been involved from the outset in this initiative and has been invited to participate in the preparation of this event. Mayor Mayoral participated in the workshop as a member of the panel, sharing a table with Mayor Manuela Carmena of Madrid and Mayor Anne Hidalgo of Paris, and the mayors of Brazzaville (Congo) and Tripoli (Libya). Also attending the panel were the representatives of Montevideo (Uruguay), Medellín and Bogotá (Colombia). The representatives expressed their concern about violence of all kinds taking place in their cities and confirmed education to be the main tool to achieve safer cities and a better coexistence.

>Report of the congress on the City of Granollers website (in Catalan)

>Information about the congress on the UCLG website

Mayor of Granollers making a presentation
about Mayors for Peace

Workshop on “World Forum on Urban Violence and Education for Coexistence and Peace"

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