March 6, 2017
SGI President Sends Message to New Human Rights Exhibition in Geneva
From left to right: Hirotsugu Terasaki, SGI Director General of Peace & Global Issues, speaking and sharing the SGI President’s message at the launch of “Transforming Lives”
A new exhibition "Transforming Lives: The Power of Human Rights Education" was launched on March 6, 2017, at the Palais des Nations, home of the United Nations Office at Geneva, Switzerland, to commemorate the fifth anniversary of the adoption of the United Nations Declaration on Human Rights Education and Training. On display until March 17, the exhibition highlights the role of human rights education in promoting dignity, equality and peace and preventing human rights violations and abuses. The exhibition was co-organized by the Soka Gakkai International, HRE 2020, the NGO Working Group on Human Rights Education and Learning and the states comprising the Platform for Human Rights Education and Training (Brazil, Costa Rica, Italy, Morocco, the Philippines, Senegal, Slovenia, Switzerland and Thailand), with support from the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).
SGI President Daisaku Ikeda, who has long asserted that the United Nations must serve as the key venue and focus for peace efforts, sent a message to the opening of the exhibition. He called on people to create an egalitarian and inclusive society by not only becoming advocates for human rights themselves but also "actively working to create an ethos within society that refuses to tacitly accept human rights abuses arising from hatred and prejudice." The SGI's social engagement, which includes collaboration and engagement with a range of individuals and organizations to promote human rights education, is based, he said, on one of the central tenets of Buddhism: "that all people innately possess a state of life of ultimate dignity; that we are all in this sense equal and are entitled to have that dignity respected at all times." [Read full message]
[Adapted from a press release of the Soka Gakkai Office of Public Information, Tokyo, and an article in the March 8, 2017, issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, Soka Gakkai, Japan]