Message from the

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade

on the occasion of the

International Day of Peace (21st September 2016)

“The Sustainable Development Goals: Building Blocks for Peace”

As we celebrate International Day of Peace, we are reminded by Saint Teresa of Calcutta, recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979, that “if we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other”.

Mindful of the myriad conflicts and cases of violence and hostilities occurring across the globe, International Day of Peace takes on added significance this year, following the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in 2015. Agenda 2030, the global blueprint for achieving sustainable development in its three dimensions – economic, social and environmental – reflects the strong commitment of the international community to leave no one behind in the pursuit of development.

It further acknowledges that sustainable development cannot be realised without peace and security. Through Goal 16 and its relevant targets focussed on the promotion of peaceful and inclusive societies, it is recognised that there is an inextricable link between peace and sustainable development to secure a brighter future for current and future generations.

The Government of Jamaica remains committed to the full and effective implementation of the 2030 Agenda which is aligned with the Vision 2030 Jamaica – National Development Plan. Goal 2 of Vision 2030 for a secure, cohesive and just society reflects the Government’s commitment to address the high incidence of crime and violence which undermines productivity and engenders hopelessness in the society.

By reducing the level of crime, we can foster a more favourable environment for economic growth and job creation, thus paving the way for Jamaica to become “the place of choice to live, work, raise families and do business”. Given the intricate link between peace and security and development, the Government has accorded high priority to eradicating crime and violence. As such, it remains firmly committed to using all available resources to address this scourge which threatens to derail our national development objectives.

There can be no development without peace. As we celebrate International Day of Peace, Jamaicans, both at home and in the Diaspora, are encouraged to become our brother’s keeper and to give of ourselves “… the service of our fellow citizens”.

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