International Association of Parliamentarians for Peace Launched in Cambodia

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By UPF Cambodia

The Minister of Civil Service and dignitaries from several Ministries attended the UPF Cambodia Leadership Conference (CLC) at the provincial hall. Among the 540 government officers were: 56 high ranking Civil Servants, 378 middle ranking Civil Servants, 38 government lawyers, 32 senior officers and 26 Ambassadors for Peace.

In addition to the 2-day CLC, the International Association of Parliamentarians for Peace (IAPP) was launched in the final session. At the IAPP program there were a total of 46 current Members of Parliament, Senators, Cabinet Ministers and Secretaries of States from various Ministries; specifically, these included: 23 Senators, 9 MPs, 2 Ministers and 12 Secretaries of State from numerous Ministries.

The 2-day conference took place from November 2 to 3, 2016, under the title “Providing a Vision of Peace and Security for Cambodia.” The Ministry of Civil Service, Cambodia and the Universal Peace Federation co-hosted the conference at the Royal School of Administration. The CLC Opening and IAPP Launching were broadcast live by two television stations (the National Television of Kampuchia and Bayon Television).

At the Opening Session, the Welcome Address was given by Dr. Lek Thaveetermsakul, Vice-Chair of UPF-Asia. H.E. Suon Rany, Board Director of RSA mentioned, “The way to realize the peace is to be willing to give up our own desires. Cambodia experienced the ‘Killing Field’ and everything was destroyed. The educational process for rebuilding the nation is the education for living for the sake of others. When we insist on our own desire or purpose, it repeats the same problem of the past. It is really necessary for all of us to learn proper and systematic moral education.”

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Mr. Hajime Saito introduced the keynote speaker, Dr. Chung Sik Yong who is Regional Chair to UPF-Asia. He read the Keynote Speech on behalf of the Founders of UPF, Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon and Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon.

For two days the main presentations were given by Dr. Robert. S. Kittel, Education Director, UPF-Asia, and Mrs. Ursula McLackland, Secretary General UPF-Asia. Hon. Ek Nath Dhakal, a former Cabinet Minister of Nepal and Chair of UPF-Nepal, introduced the South Asia Peace Initiative (SAPI) program. SAPI is a project of UPF.

Another UPF project is the International Association of Parliamentarians for Peace (IAPP). The launching of the Cambodian chapter of IAPP was conducted during the last session. Hon. Dhakal explained the vision and process for IAPP which has already been launched in the Asian nations of Nepal, India, Pakistan Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. In addition IAPP programs have been held in Africa, Europe, and Latin & South America.

The IAPP launching began with a performance by the local Cambodian Folk Group called the “Apsara Dance.” (Apsara in Cambodian Language means “Angels”) Several women, wearing traditional dresses played Apsara. Their graceful, sinuous gestures were codified to narrate classical myth. This launching of IAPP-Cambodia was co-hosted by the Ministry of Civil Service and the Ministry of the Royal Palace. The staging, music performance and entertainment were prepared by the Ministry of the Royal Palace.

At the end of the program the Ministers, Senators, Members of Parliament, other VIPs, international guests and participants showed their support for parliamentarians’ peace initiative by signing the proposal for launching IAPP-Cambodia. Throughout the remainder of this year the UPF will be holding a series of conferences to launch IAPP globally. A global debut of this worldwide parliamentarians association will be held in Washington D.C. at the beginning of December in the United States.

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Reflections

H.E. Prom Sou, Ministry of Education: “I liked the topic, “Attributes of True Love” the most. I think every motivation should begin from true love. It connected ‘life’ and ‘lineage’ together. There was the topic from Dr. Kittel to explain about ‘Freedom.’ I think ‘True Love’ sets us free.”

Mr. Phoeuk Chanty, Ministry of Health: “I inspired from the presentation from “Importance of Marriage and Family for Society”. It really made sense for me, that in order to realize the true peace world, it should begins from family. Family is the School of Love, Family Building is the Nation Building.”

Ms. Seang Dana, Ministry of Justice: “The lives of human beings depend on nature or environment. Everything around us is spiritual and all people have to be aware of this. It means everything around us is alive or connected to everything in the world. For example, many countries in Asia (such as Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam, Laos and Myanmar, etc.) believe in spirit. These countries always use joss sticks (incense sticks) to pray to God… Therefore, the principle of peace is to love the nature and all human beings as whole.”

H.E. Man Ratanak, Kampot Province: “Peaceful and meaningful living with respect for others is living for the sake of others. Love is not isolated because love comes from the two partners. The world is experiencing war and political issues because of selfishness and because there is no true love from hearts. True love will be clearly revealed when a person dies – how many people will cry for her/him at the funeral?”

Ms. Hak Mounhout, Battambang Province: “The lectures, ‘Human Responsibility and Existence of Spirit World” and the “Root Cause of Human Conflict and Suffering” impressed me the most because these teachings are connected to our living with a religious life. We should have the wider and wiser view of family. I absolutely agreed that we have to protect the young generations to keep purity before marriage and to keep ourselves as a model family as the principle of one man and one woman.”

H.E. Ouk Damary, MP: “To live in a peaceful world, the Principle of Peace must be applied or adopted everywhere in the world. We cannot change our religion for peace: however, we need to first change our behavior or habit. If somebody does a negative habit repeatedly, she/he will have a negative culture. As a result, a negative culture is not easy to change. In this case, the concept of goodness in the Principle of Peace must be first promoted in the hearts and bodies of men and women. By living the principle of true love people in the world will have no conflict if they have the same behavior, habit and understanding by doing goodness, i.e. sacrificing without reward.”

H.E. Momkhlem Khlemchan, Member of Parliament: “Forming a family, community, nation as well as the world, a married couple between man and woman cannot be lacked for continuous generations as Yin (respect woman) and Yang (respect man) in Chinese word. Moreover, the importance of marriage is to reduce poverty, divorce, crime and out-marriage pregnancy. Family quality is based on husband and wife relationship, so true love is the must – true love is not a principle but it is from our bottom of heart.”