UPF Asia Pacific organized two-day International Leadership Conference with the theme “Towards the Peaceful Reunification of the Korean Peninsula: Peace and Security” from July 7-8, 2021. According to Ek Nath Dhakal, Chairm of the UPF Asia Pacific, the ILC was joined by 3,000 virtual participants from 41 nations, 50 speakers delivered the message of peace, discussing not only on how to contribute to the peaceful reunification of the Korean Peninsula but also on how this initiative can impact peace, prosperity and stability on the world scale. This ILC is an ongoing initiation of UPF’s Think-Tank 2022 forum.
The virtual program was broadcasted from Manila, capital of the Philippines. The program began with an invocation by interfaith leaders from Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam and Taoism. Held live via YouTube and various social media platforms the session was interpreted into 8 languages and garnered an estimated 300,000 internet viewers.
Former heads of state and government, parliamentarians, academicians and economic leadersshared their in-depth insights on the conference topic, said Mrs. Ursula McLackland, Secretary General of UPF Asia Pacific.
Hon. Ranil Wickremasinghe, Prime Minister of Sri Lanka (2015-2019), in his remarks at the opening session appreciated Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon for her commitment to the advancement of Universal Peace. He expressed that it is essential for Asia that the two Koreas unite, which has to be done peacefully. He continued to envision as he quoted, “United Korea means a stronger Asia.”
Hon. Jose De Venecia Jr. (JDV), 5-time Speaker of the House, Philippines, in his speech, discussed a few significant proposals and contributions of IAPP: (i) The two Koreas should adapt to global changes; (ii) revival of Six-Party Talks and Korean Unification; (iii) ASEAN Plus 4- (formerly ASEAN plus 3) adding North Korea to the East Asian Economic Grouping; and (iv) the transfer of ICAPP Secretariat from Manila to Seoul in 2006.
Dr. Thomas Walsh, Chairman of UPF International, stressed that UPF will focus their efforts on bringing peace to the Korean Peninsula throughout this year. He added that there will be another set of ILC towards the end of July which will focus on Track II Diplomacy and the third series will be convened at the end of August which will discuss broader worldviews. Simultaneous to these are ILC conferences in 6 regions around the world: Africa, South America, North America, Central America, Europe and Middle East.
As the speakers of the session expressed their sincere hopes and insights for the peaceful reunification of the Korean Peninsula, it is paramount that the process is done not by armed conflict but harmonious dialogues and negotiations, promoting the common interests of the two Koreas and the world.
Discussion topics include, Prospects for Korean Peace and Security in a Changing Geopolitical Landscape, China’s Key Role in Korean Unification, Achieving Sustainable Peace in Korea: A Multilateral Challenge for Asia Pacific, Re-Energizing the United Nations for Peace on the Korean Peninsula and Challenges of Peace on the Korean Peninsula: Analyzing the Security Scenario, among others.
The session on “Emerging Indo Pacific Strategies after G7 Summit – Implications for Korea” was jointly organized and participated by UPF Japan and Asia Pacific. Mr. Yoji Koda, vice admiral (retired) of Japan Maritime Self Defense Force; Hon. Ram Madhav, governing board member of India Foundation and former national general secretary in Bharatiya Janata Party, Indiaand Dr. Jessica Widjaja, Constitutional Law expert from Indonesia, emphasized the importance of strengthening Indo Pacific Strategies.
Dr. Kim Hyung-suk, Vice Minister of the Ministry of Unification (2016-2017) from the Republic of Korea, shared a comprehensive descriptive analysis for both North and South Korea. He said that if North Korea will come out in openness and cooperate, conflicts will disappear and reunification is possible.
Mr. Subash Kaji Shrestha, Deputy Secretary General, Asian Regional Institute of Juche Idea emphasized that the “September Pyongyang Joint Declaration 2018” signed by Chairman of the State Affairs Commission of the DPR of Korea Kim Jong Un and President of the Republic of Korea Moon Jae is a landmark for national reunification to further accelerate the development of the inter-Korean relations and open up a new heyday of national reconciliation, unity, peace and prosperity by honestly and fully implementing the Panmunjom declaration in keeping with the aspiration and demand of all Koreans.
Prof. Bo Zhiyue from China was on the view that China could continue to play a leadership role in the Korean reunification by hosting multilateral talks. Based on its experience of hosting the six-party talks on the Korean peninsula nuclear issue in the past, China could very well play a more effective role in hosting multilateral talks on Korean reunification. As a regional leader and an emerging global leader, it is imperative for China to play a constructive leadership role in international affairs.
Other speakers at the ILC includes Tom McDevitt, chairman of the Washington
Times; Dr. Thomas Solever, President of Professors World Peace Academy; Prof. Swaran Singh from Jawaharlal Nehru University, India; Former Nepalese Ambassador to France Mohan Krishna Shrestha, Amb. Dayantha Laksiri Mendis, former Sri Lankan Ambassador to UN in Vienna; Babib Mayar of G7plus; Prof. Biman Chand Prasad from Fiji, former Indian Ambassadors, Amb. KV Rajan and Amb. Yogendra Kumar; Dr. Chheang Vannarith, president of Asian Vision Institute; Masayoshi Kajikuri, Chairman of UPF Japan; Dr. Michael Jenkins, Chairman of UPF USA and Dr. Taj Hamd, UN office Director of UPF in New York addressed the ILC. Experts and scholars from G-20 nations such as Australia, China, Indonesia, India, Japan and Korea among other various Asian nations spoke their perspectives and offered their recommendation on the topic. Full report will be available at our website, UPF.ORG shortly.
Experts and scholars from G-20 nations such as Australia, China, Indonesia, India, Japan and Korea among other various Asian nations spoke their perspectives and offered their recommendation on the topic. Full report will be available at our website, UPF.ORG shortly.
All speakers speaking from their own experiences and style but focused their positive and optimistic views on the Korean Reunification and applaud UPF Co-founder Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon for her courage and efforts on taking this initiative forward. Everyone directly or indirectly agreed that Interdependence, Mutual Prosperity and Universal Values are shared beliefs for bringing negotiation and reconciliation between the two divided Korean nations.
Closing session was addressed by former President of the Republic of Vanuatu Hon. Ati George Sokumano and MP from Cambodia Hon. Suos Yara. Both of them congratulated UPF for the successful event and assured their support for its future activities. Various cultural performances were presented during the opening and closing session of the ILC. Participants are honored with E-certificates.
Inspired from experts’ endorsement and participants enthusiasm, UPF will continue to convene its future activities dedicated to bring peaceful reunification of Korean Peninsula and world peace.
Thanking all the speakers and participants, Chairman of the UPF Asia Pacific Hon. Ek Nath Dhakal, looks forward to working together with various government and civil society for UPF’s future projects.