United Nations, New York, USA, May 03 2016 – UN Messenger of Peace Michael Douglas along with Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and a group of UN dignitaries promotes peace and abolition of nuclear weapons through art today at the UN Headquarters in New York.
By Britta Schmitz
UNITED NATIONS, May 4 2016 – The United Nations honored the winners of the Poster for
Peace Contest with a ceremony attended by academy-award winning actor Michael Douglas.
Between October 24 2015 and January 24 2016 artists could participate in a poster competition
by creating a poster aimed at raising awareness around nuclear disarmament.
“The aim of this poster competition is to raise awareness to spur action, and it has been a great
success. We received over 4,000 entries from 123 countries,“ Secretary General Ban Ki-moon
The Office for Disarmament Affairs (ODA) organized this special event on the abolition of nuclear
weapons through art. The event was held in commemoration of the seventieth anniversary of
the first UN General Assembly resolution adopted on January 24 1946. This resolution
established the goal of eliminating nuclear weapons and all other major weapons of mass
Michael Douglas, who has been a UN Messenger of Peace since his designation in 1998,
addressed the media at the event. In his position as a UN Messenger of Peace he focuses on
raising awareness around strengthening peace and security. At the Poster for Peace Award
Ceremony he honored the artists by saying that their posters “instantly create a universal
message of peace.“
Michelle Yeoh, the Secretary General’s wife Ban Soon-taek and several UN dignitaries also
attended the event.
“This competition is a wonderful celebration of creativity, but it has an important purpose: to
reaffirm the United Nations’ historic commitment to nuclear disarmament. It commemorates the
very first General Assembly resolution, which called for the abolition of nuclear
weapons. Disarmament is part of the DNA of the United Nations, which was formed when the
first and last use of nuclear weapons in war was fresh in people’s minds,“ Secretary General Ban
UN Messenger of Peace Michael Douglas along with Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and a group of UN dignitaries promotes peace and abolition of nuclear weapons through art today at the UN Headquarters in New York. Photo: Luiz Rampelotto/EuropaNewswire
The three winners and nine honourable mentions were chosen in March. Ivan Ciro Palomino
Huamani from Peru won the first place for his contribution Spinning Peace. The American
Michelle Li won the second place for her poster Peace in Our Hands. Anjali Chandrashekar is the
third-place winner with Cutting Barriers through Peace. She also received an honourable
mention from the United States for her poster Break Free.
“All countries have rejected the use of nuclear weapons. But until these weapons are completely
eliminated, they continue to pose a threat to our common well-being. Fears of nuclear terrorism
make disarmament even more urgent and important,“ Ban Ki-moon said.
As the Secretary General pointed out, young people were strongly represented in the poster
competition. While young people did not invent nuclear weapons it might be their task to
United Nations, New York, USA, May 03 2016 – UN Messenger of Peace Michael Douglas along with Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and a group of UN dignitaries promotes peace and abolition of nuclear weapons through art today at the UN Headquarters in New York. Photo: Luiz Rampelotto/EuropaNewswire
“Last week, I attended a very important conference in Vienna marking the 20th anniversary of
the singing of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty. But twenty years after it was signed,
the treaty has not entered into force,“ the Secretary General expressed his concern. “I urged the
remaining eight countries, whose signing and ratification is required for the treaty to enter into
force, to do so without further delay.“