UN declares creation of International Day of Nonviolence

Updated: 2007-06-16 05:19

The 61st UN General Assembly decided on Friday to observe the International Day of Nonviolence each year on October 2 - the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, the spiritual and political leader of India who led the struggle for India's independence from the British Empire.

Introducing the resolution adopted by the 192-member body, India's Minister of State for External Relations Anand Sharma, said the idea originated at an international conference on "Peace, Nonviolence and Empowerment - Gandhian Philosophy in the 21st Century" convened in New Delhi in January this year.

Mahatma Gandhi was born October 2, 1869. His philosophy of nonviolence has influenced national and international nonviolent resistance movements to this day.

The assembly, "desiring to secure a culture of peace, tolerance, understanding and nonviolence," invited states, UN bodies, regional and nongovernmental organizations and individuals to commemorate the day, including through education and public awareness, according to the text of the resolution.

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