For information only – not an official document

30 September 2022

The Secretary-General

Message for the International Day of Non-Violence

2 October 2022

The International Day of Non-Violence celebrates not only Mahatma Gandhi’s birthday, but the values he embodied that echo across the decades: peace, mutual respect, and the essential dignity shared by every person.

Sadly, our world is not living up to those values.

We see this through growing conflicts and climate chaos. Poverty, hunger and deepening inequalities. Prejudice, racism and rising hate speech. And a morally bankrupt global financial system that entrenches poverty and stymies recovery for developing countries.

We can defeat these challenges by embracing Gandhi’s values and working across cultures and borders to build a better, more peaceful future for all.

By investing in people’s health, education, decent jobs and social protection to prevent people from falling and catch them when they do.

By ensuring access to financing and debt relief for all countries.

By supporting developing countries as they build resilient infrastructure and protect populations from the impacts of climate change, while also accelerating the transition from planet-killing fossil fuels to renewable energy.

By securing and upholding the rights and dignity of all people — especially the most vulnerable, and girls and women who are too often denied their basic rights.

By taking concrete action for inclusion, recognizing multi-cultural, multi-religious and multi-ethnic societies as a richness, not a threat.

Gandhi’s life and example reveal a timeless pathway to a more peaceful and tolerant world.

Let us walk this path together, in solidarity, as one human family.  

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