Geneva PeaceTalks: Actions for Peace

GENEVA PEACETALKS 2023

21 September 2023

4:00 – 6:00 PM CEST

Room XVII, Palais des Nations, Geneva (& livestreamed online)

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Each year the International Day of Peace (IDP) is observed around the world on 21 September. The UN General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, through observing 24 hours of non-violence and cease-fire. Never has our world needed peace more.

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres said, “Peace is needed today more than ever. War and conflict are unleashing devastation, poverty, and hunger, and driving tens of millions of people from their homes. Climate chaos is all around. And even peaceful countries are gripped by gaping inequalities and political polarization.”

The official United Nations’ theme for the International Day of Peace, Actions for Peace: Our Ambition for the #GlobalGoals,  will underpin the 2023 edition of the  Geneva PeaceTalks.   It is a call to action that recognizes our individual and collective responsibility to foster peace. Fostering peace contributes to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals will create a culture of peace for all.

At this year’s Geneva PeaceTalks, we will listen to personal stories from people from around the world and different backgrounds on their actions for peace through a series of inspirational talks.

The Geneva PeaceTalks are co-organized by the United Nations Office at Geneva, Interpeace and the Geneva Peacebuilding Platform with support of the Permanent Mission of Switzerland to the UN to celebrate the International Day of Peace.

21 editions of the PeaceTalks live events have taken place in more than 8 countries with over 8,000 in person attendees and 200+ speakers, ranging from elementary school students to the former United Nations Secretary-General.

Storytelling for Peace 

The PeaceTalks is a global initiative that uses storytelling as a tool to build peace and inspire action.

Stories and their telling can create change. The best ones influence our beliefs, inspire us to make an impact, and illuminate what it means to be human. Everyone has a story to tell through which we can learn.

Storytelling is a powerful educational and peacebuilding tool. Through the telling of personal stories, topics usually addressed from a general angle in the news, come to life, taking human form. Through stories we see the individual instead of the abstract mass. This fosters empathy, understanding and dialogue

 IF…we expand the space for dialogue about peace beyond technical peacebuilding through storytelling, focusing on personal stories and what is working;

THEN…a greater audience of people will become more aware of their potential individual roles and contributions in building peace, and that their actions can have a meaningful and positive impact in sustaining peace;

BECAUSE…they will feel inspired, empowered, and encouraged to support relevant initiatives where they work or to take personal action of their own

The Geneva PeaceTalks will feature the following speakers:

  • Maiwen Ngalueth,  Humanitarian and peace professional, South Sudan
  • Sofia Stril-Rever, Spiritual activist and teacher, France
  • Cheick Fayçal Traore, Burkinabé, Peacebuilding and development professional
  • Nilofar Ayoubi, Women and Human Rights defender from Afghanistan, Journalist, CEO of Asiatimes.af
  • Nina Verdiane Niabodé, Host & Producer at Radio Ndeke Luka, Central African Republic
  • Alicia Sanders-Zakre, nuclear disarmament researcher and activist and Research and Policy Coordinator at the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons
  • César López, renowned Colombian musician and composer and social leader. His special musical performance is made possible through the Plan for the Promotion of Colombia Abroad of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Colombia
  • Special video screening of “Peace Begins With Me”, a creative collaboration between Congolese peacekeeper and musician Pacifique Akilimali and Nigerian peace advocate and poet Maryam Bukar Hassan
  • Special video screening of “1.5 Degrees of Peace”,  from Kasha Sequoia Slavner Gen Z activist and award-winning director 
  • A message on the International Day of Peace from António Guterres, ninth Secretary-General of the United Nations
  • Special remarks by Tatiana Valovaya, 13th Director-General of the United Nations Office at Geneva.
  • Closing remarks, Simon Gimson, Acting-President and Chief Operating Officer, Interpeace
  • The event will be moderated by Sarah Noble, curator of PeaceTalks

Meet the people of the 2023 Geneva PeaceTalks

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Simon Gimson

New Zealand

Maiwen Ngalueth

South Sudan

Nilofar Ayoubi

Afghanistan

Nina Verdiane Niabodé

Central African Republic

Alicia Sanders-Zakre

United States of America

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