The Association of World Citizens (AWC) is a world-wide movement of individuals who participate fully in the emerging cosmopolitan, humanist world society. The Association of World Citizens has consultative status with ECOSOC, the United Nations organ facilitating international cooperation on and problem-solving in world economic and social issues.
Non-governmental Organizations (NGO) such as the Association of World Citizens, through their consultative status with the U.N., are rising in influence and are respected voices within the United Nations. Citizens of the World have achieved much by working through the U.N. and its Specialized Agencies. World Citizens contribute to the development of global policy and international agreements through interaction with government representatives, U.N. Secretariat members, the representatives of other NGOs and academic specialists. In this way World Citizens take firm action to formulate effective responses to the challenges facing the world society.
We believe that the term "world citizen" best encompasses the constellation of principles, values, attitudes and behaviors needed in the emerging world society. That is why we are the Association of World Citizens. World Citizenship begins with an acceptance of the oneness of the human family and an affirmation of the life-promoting values of joy and personal growth.
The Association of World Citizens is structured around four avenues of action:
1. The Resolution of Armed Conflicts: In the AWC efforts to resolve armed conflicts through negotiations in good faith, we stress that we must pay attention to new tensions and new difficulties in world politics. We are dedicated to the emergence of a consciousness of humanity as one community. We work to develop non-violent methods to resolve armed conflicts and to develop a culture of peace based on reverence for life. Many of the AWC positions are on the website http://awcungeneva.wordpress.com. Our emphasis has been on the resolution of armed conflicts in the Wider Middle East and Africa.
2. The Promotion and Protection of Human Rights: In the field of the promotion and protection of human rights, AWC action and appeals to Governments have concerned the human rights of:
3. Ecologically-sound development: A new history is being written, a history which requires the increased cooperation between humans and Nature. World Citizens are active on such issues as global warming, deforestation and the quality of air and water. A special emphasis has been placed on a comprehensive world food policy and cooperation in trans-frontier river systems.
4. The creation of a cosmopolitan, humanist world society: Citizens of the World have been in the lead to create a New Humanism for the 21st century in keeping with UNESCO's call for the development of a universal global consciousness based on dialogue in a climate of trust and mutual understanding. World Citizens strive to build bridges of understanding over the divides of cultures, social classes and narrow nationalism. Thus World Citizens create the foundations of a cosmopolitan, humanist world society.
As World Citizens, we know that the problems confronting humanity are daunting in their depth and complexity. Yet we know that the human spirit is endowed with the ability to transform even the most difficult circumstances through cooperation for positive change. Today, we move into the New Age of cooperation and spiritual growth.
19 February, in countries influenced by Chinese culture, is a day devoted to honouring Kuan Yin, goddess of compassion. It is a day for making special pleas for support for compassionate action. Thus our plea for those working to reduce tensions on the Korean Peninsula.
Recent threats, sanctions, and more threats have resulted in escalating tensions among North Korea, South Korea, the United States, Japan, China and Russia. Such tensions could lead to military conflict with devastating consequences.
Thus our plea to Kuan Yin that the vicious cycle of threats be broken without delay. Our plea to Kuin Yin is that new energy be given to those working to reduce tensions on the Korean Peninsula. In this period of the Winter Olympics in South Korea, there have been symbol gestures to help reduce tensions. We must build on these symbolic gestures to develop policies for understanding and cooperation.
The Association of World Citizens (www.worldcitizensunited.org) works to heal the wounds of past armed conflicts such as the 1950-1953 war in Korea. We need to build bridges of understanding among peoples. Despite the obvious tensions among States, there is a great awakening as many people throughout the world proclaim their identity as Citizens of the World.
With the energy given by Kuan Yin, we work for peace, equality, liberty and the protection of the environment. Your cooperation is most welcome!
Rene Wadlow, President, Association of World Citizens
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