Jordi Calvo, vice-president of IPB and coordinator of GCOMS, attended the PyeongChang Peace Forum 2020 (PPF 2020), a global peace platform that delivers the peace-establishing momentum from the Korean Peninsula over the global community. This year, commemorating the 70th anniversary of the outbreak of the Korean War, the PPF 2020 gathered top speakers from home and abroad to explore practical measures to attain peace in the Peninsula and go beyond the feud and division that have existed during these 70 years. The PyeongChang Agenda for Peace 2030 was also adopted during these days (February 9 to 11), proposing a collection of ideas and initiatives to promote peace and disarmament in the context of the Decade of Action of the UN SDGs.
Jordi Calvo participated in the first panel of the 4th Plenary Session on Peace and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), where panelists explored various dimensions of the civil society movements for a peaceful, just and inclusive world taking into account the global agenda on sustaining peace, disarmament and SDGs. In his presentation, the GCOMS coordinator advocated for major reductions of military spending and for their reallocation to peacebuilding and human security policies. By describing and comparing the global trends of military spending, arms transfers and armed conflicts of the last 70 years, which are visibly connected when displayed in graphs, Calvo made evident the urgent need of halting ongoing militarization and weapons build-up processes, as a means to reduce the possibility of war and conflict but also as a way to free up the necessary resources to provide social and environmental security and to implement programs as the UN SDGs.
Lastly, he encouraged participants to participate in the Global Days of Action on Military Spending (GDAMS) which this year will take place from April 10 to May 9 and will include a wide variety of actions (from press conferences and workshops to street protests or stalls) in over 30 countries.
Another outcome of the Forum was the PyeongChang Message for Peace 2020, which is a summary of the deliberations of civil society participants. Each participant is called to act on any number or all of the action items that the Message calls, each to the specifications and requirements of their own organizations. Jordi Calvo participated in the section H, on Peace, Disarmament and the SDGs:
34. We reaffirm the primary goal of the UN to “save succeeding generations from the scourge of war”, and call on governments to implement this goal by fully utilizing the range of mechanisms outlined in the UN Charter for the peaceful resolution of conflicts, including to accept compulsory jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice (ICJ).
35. Peace and disarmament are required to achieve the SDGs. Military activity – whether in peacetime or war – contributes considerably to carbon emissions and climate change. Weapons production, proliferation and use undermine societal structures, erode security, increase risks to economic and social activity, contaminate environments and threaten human health, lives and livelihoods. In addition, one of the key reasons for military build-up and military threats is to protect oil supplies, further contributing to climate change and preventing transition to a sustainable economy.
36. We welcome the UN Secretary General‟s Agenda for Disarmament – Securing our Common Future (2018) and the connections made in this agenda between peace, disarmament and the SDGs. We call for the full implementation of the agenda, and especially the elimination of nuclear weapons by 2045, the 100th anniversary of the UN.
37. We also call on governments to establish constitutional provisions committing their countries to the peaceful resolution of conflicts, including less visible and protracted conflicts, cyber conflicts, the progressive reduction and elimination of standing armies, and the redistribution of military spending to support the SDGs.
38. We express grave concern at the power of the weapons and fossil fuel industries that are thwarting peace, disarmament, democracy, human rights and climate action. We call on civil society, governments and financial institutions to divest from fossil fuel, nuclear weapons and other military industries, and reinvest according to the environmental, social and governance principles.
39. We call for full implementation of UN Security Council Resolutions 1325 on Women, Peace and Security (WPS); 2250 on Youth, Peace and Security, and 2419 on Youth, Conflict Prevention and Conflict Resolution, and for the implementation of UN General Assembly Resolution 74/64 on Youth, Disarmament and Non-Proliferation, and especially to ensure youth and women’s representation in decision-making bodies.
You can download the full PyeongChang Message for Peace 2020 here.