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Bahrain show to promote culture of peace

Manama, March 11, 2013

Bahrain is set to become the first country in the Middle East to host an exhibition that promotes peace and the non-proliferation of nuclear weapons, a report said.

The exhibition, titled From a Culture of Violence to a Culture of Peace, consists of photographs and has been shown in 29 countries since it was first launched in 2007, according to the report in our sister publication the Gulf Daily News.

The show’s appearance in Bahrain is co-organised by the Bahrain Centre for Strategic, International and Energy Studies, SokaGakkai International (SGI), International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) and Inter Press Service (IPS).

The exhibition will open tomorrow at the Bahrain National Museum, Manama, under the patronage of Foreign Minister Shaikh Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, in co-operation with the Japanese Embassy and Bahrain government.

It will be open to the public from Wednesday until March 23 at Seef Mall, a top shopping and leisure destination.

"What we celebrate here today by launching this exhibition is a sincere expression of the true spirit of Islam," Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Ghanim Fadhel Al Buainain told a Press conference yesterday at UN House, Manama.

"The biggest problem that threatens international peace and security is the global and regional arms race, especially nuclear arms."

Al Buainain highlighted Iran's pursuit of a nuclear programme and North Korea testing nuclear weapons as issues of concern.

"I would like to single out the third nuclear test carried out by North Korea in February this year," he said.

"I shall also not fail to note Iran's nuclear programme, which it maintains has peaceful intentions. However, it has far-reaching effects on the environment, wildlife and marine life, as well as radioactive pollution and security risks in the Arabian Gulf if it transforms into a militaristic nuclear programme."

Japanese Ambassador Shigeki Sumi spoke about the emergence of human security as a key concept, not just military security, and emphasised the need to phase out nuclear weapons.

"Japan has been working towards eliminating nuclear weapons in the UN," he said. "We should all band together for this. Christians, Muslims and Buddhists should work together and move our cultures from one of violence to one of peace."

SGI is a worldwide Buddhist association founded in 1975 that undertakes grass roots activities with the aim of promoting peace, culture and education.

"In the areas of peace and disarmament, in particular the abolition of nuclear weapons, our initiatives have been centred on raising awareness among the general public," said SGI executive director for peace affairs HirotsuguTerasaki.

"Through exhibitions, publications and seminars, we provide forums for dialogue with the aim of building a network for nuclear abolition. Our focus has been to involve young people and raise awareness through youth-centred forums, workshops and anti-nuclear petition drives,” he added.


Terasaki said the exhibition is moving to Bahrain for several reasons.

"We chose Bahrain to mark the first showing of the exhibition in the Middle East to contribute to the discussion on a Middle East nuclear weapons and Weapons of Mass Destruction free zone," he said.

"We also want to provide an opportunity for the people of Bahrain to revisit the issue of nuclear weapons as something immediate and relevant in their lives, especially from the perspective of human security." – TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Bahrain | Exhibition | peace | photographs | Nuclear Weapons |

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