THE WORLD, ITS PROTECTION, ITS CITIZENS
By René Wadlow
On behalf of the Association of World Citizens, I would like to send you our best wishes for 2016.
May it be a year that brings peace and harmony closer to our world. Progress in the world is based on the emergence of ideas, their acceptance, their transformation into ideals, and then into programs of action.
2015 has seen within the United Nations (UN) system two major frameworks of ideas and suggested plans of action. The first was the post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals, and the second was the Paris COP 21 goals and treaty to deal with climate change. These guidelines require close cooperation among national governments, the UN and other multilateral government institutions such as the European Union, and the wide range of non-governmental organizations including business and agriculture associations. We need to move from fragmented efforts to strong partnerships.
However, these positive goals need to be seen against the background of current armed conflicts and violent extremism often rooted in a deadly mix of exclusion and marginalization, mismanagement of natural resources, oppression and the alienation arising from a lack of jobs and opportunities. The World is in need of protection, both of people and Nature. As Citizens of the World, we have a sense of responsibility to participate fully in the emerging world society where disputes among States are settled within the framework of world law and through negotiations in good faith so that common interests may be found and developed.
As Citizens of the World, we have a sense of compassion for Nature, and thus we unite to safeguard the delicate balance of the natural environment and to develop the world’s resources for the common good.
Today, we all face a choice between those forces that would drive us apart, forces and attitudes such as racism, narrow nationalism and the aggressive pursuit of self-interest on the one hand, and on the other hand, those forces which promote an emerging world society that is equitable and harmonious. I am sure that you also will choose to work for wholeness, harmony and creativity.
Prof. René Wadlow is President of the Association of World Citizens.