UNISFA observes International Day of Peace

23 Sep 2017

UNISFA observes International Day of Peace

The United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) observed the International Day of Peace with sporting events between the UN peacekeepers, staff and the youth of Abyei and Diffra. The event was conducted to get across the message of peace focusing on this year’s global theme - Together for Peace: Respect, Safety and Dignity for All.

The Acting Head of Mission and Force Commander Major General Tesfay Hailemichael led the opening of the games with a ceremonial tossing of the ball, together with the Chief of Mission Support Mr. Robert Kirkwood and senior leadership of the Sudan and South Sudan National Monitors.  

Dubbed as the Peace Day Friendship Games, the event in Abyei spoke for the characteristics that peacekeepers, staff, and community should hold and embrace to fulfill the UNISFA mandate - fair play, hard work and commitment.

Drawings and messages of children and youth from Abyei and Diffra on what peace means to them were also showcased during the event. The messages were featured on UNISFA’s social media platforms.

In addition, contemporary songs of peace were also rendered by UNISFA staff during the awarding ceremony on 22 September.

Winning teams of the Friendship Games received trophies and medals from the senior leadership of UNISFA led by Acting Force Commander Brig General Gebrekidan Yebiyo, Chief of Mission Support Mr. Robert Kirkwood, and the Senior Police Advisor Mary Gahonzire. The winners of the games were – UNISFA Staff Team for basketball, Ethiopian Troops for volleyball (men) and Abyei Community Youth Team for volleyball (women).

Mr. Alexander Rose, Principal Officer, delivered the message of the UN Secretary-General António Guterres on the International Day of Peace to UNISFA staff and troops.

“On this International Day, we call for a global ceasefire. We must never -- ever -- stop pressing for an end to armed conflict. Peace is the right and the desire of all people. It is the foundation for progress and well-being – happy children, thriving communities, and peaceful, prosperous countries. Let us pledge to work together – today and every day – for the peace we all yearn for and deserve.”

Photos of Peace Day activities - https://www.facebook.com/unisfa/posts/830460637141557