United Nations headquarters celebrated the 2010 International Day of Peace on September 17, which this year is dedicated to children. Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon marked the occasion by ringing a bell cast from pennies donated by children from 60 nations. The bell was a gift from Japan and hangs in the garden in front of UN Headquarters.
On the occasion Mr. Ban said,
Young people today are at home with global diversity; they are comfortable in an interconnected world. Yet they are also vulnerable to the forces of extremism. So I say to all governments and our partners: let us do more to give them a world of tolerance and opportunity. And I say to all young people: join us…
You are concerned that we, your elders, have not made greater headway against these threats. There have been remarkable gains, but we need faster progress – much, much faster. Young people can play a central role.
Accompanying Mr. Ban were UN Messengers of Peace and Goodwill Ambassadors Midori Goto, Yuna Kim, Anggun, Catarina Furtado, Goedele Liekens and Elie Wiesel. Incoming General Assembly President Joseph Deiss also made remarks on the occasion, saying that
Peace can only be achieved through tolerance, dialogue, friendship and respect among peoples, liberty and democracy, justice and prosperity.