Ministry of Peace

“By Sharing our lives with disabled people, drug addicts and minors without families, we try to get their voices everywhere, especially to those who have the power to liberate and oppress. (…) Of so many existing ministries, I would have liked you to have added another one: the Ministry of Peace. Men have always organized the war. The time has come to organize peace.”

Letter to the President of the Council – Year 2001. Don Oreste Benzi – Founder Community Pope John XXIII.

Our idea of the Ministry of Peace finds its origin in the thought of the founder of our community APG23, Don Oreste Benzi, and was then elaborated and deepened over the years by our association. Don Oreste Benzi claimed the establishment of a Ministry of Peace in 1994 in an open letter to the Italian government. He believed that “since men have always been organizing wars, it was high time to organize peace and the Ministry of Peace should be tasked precisely with this mission”. Taking Don Oreste Benzi’s thought as an inspiration, in 2017 APG23 launched a national campaign to promote the establishment of a Ministry of Peace in Italy; this national campaign has received a great support from many other Italian civil society organizations and academia. APG23 continues its campaign and its advocacy efforts in Italy for the creation of a Ministry of Peace.

We also propose establishing Ministries of Peace all around the world as an effective move towards the realization of the 2016 Declaration on the Right to Peace and a response to the urgent need of implementing the right to peace:

  • A well-structured, comprehensive, nationwide infrastructure that is able to authoritatively dialogue and reach out to the domestic and local level as well as to the international level – that is a Ministry of Peace – is necessary to ensure that each State fulfils its leading role in guaranteeing peace to all. The juridical basis for our proposal stems from the 2016 Declaration on the Right to Peace, in particular its art. 3 which calls States and other stakeholders to take “appropriate sustainable measures to implement the present Declaration” (UN General Assembly, 2017, A/RES/71/189).
  • There are some key principles to be taken into account while designing and establishing a successful Ministry of Peace: adaptability and flexibility; its cross-cutting dimension; inclusive participation and ownership; subsidiarity and complementarity; transparency and accountability.

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