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Executive Advisor for Mayors for Peace addresses UN Conference of Teachers
Report by Randy Rydell, Executive Advisor for Mayors for Peace
On 28 February 2020, the Committee on Teaching About the United Nations (CTAUN) held an all-day “No More War” conference at the United Nations. The event, which was co-sponsored by the Republic of Korea’s UN Mission, was held to mark the 75th anniversary of the United Nations. The CTAUN seeks to promote global awareness, interdependence, and the goals of the UN Charter through educational programmes at the high school and graduate levels. The conference was attended by 673 people, both educators and students, including 70 Fulbright students from 30 countries.
Speakers this year included feminist Gloria Steinem and Nobel Peace Laureate Leymah Gbowee and the conference featured panels on: creating peace; peace education; transformative education; new technologies; women, peace and security; and world peace through law. In addition, a separate panel discussed disarmament issues, with UN Under- Secretary-General for Disarmament Affairs Ms. Izumi Nakamitsu addressing conventional weapons issues and Randy Rydell (Executive Advisor for Mayors for Peace) covering nuclear-weapon-related issues (disarmament, non-proliferation and nuclear terrorism).
On the respective contributions of the UN and civil society in ending war, Ms. Steinem concluded, “Honor, respect and pressure the UN, but don’t wait for the UN. Just do it.”