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Nelson Mandela International Day 2018
by Nelson Mandela Foundation, The Elders, agencies
1:59pm 18th Jul, 2018
 
Nelson Mandela International Day 2018 marks 100 years since the birth of Nelson Mandela (18 July 1918). The Centenary is an occasion to reflect on his life and legacy, and to follow his call to “make of the world a better place.”
  
In recognition of the former South African President’s contribution to the culture of peace and freedom, the United Nations General Assembly declared 18 July "Nelson Mandela International Day".
  
Resolution (A/RES/64/13) recognizes Mandela’s values and his dedication to the service of humanity in: conflict resolution; race relations; promotion and protection of human rights; reconciliation; gender equality and the rights of children and other vulnerable groups; the fight against poverty; the promotion of social justice.
  
The resolution acknowledges his contribution to the struggle for democracy internationally and the promotion of a culture of peace throughout the world.
  
Nelson Mandela Rules:
  
The UN General Assembly decided to extend the scope of Nelson Mandela International Day, observed each year on 18 July, to be also utilized in order to promote humane conditions of imprisonment; to raise awareness about prisoners being a continuous part of society; to value the work of prison staff as a social service of particular importance.
  
The resolution not only adopted the revised United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners, but also approved that they should be known as the "Nelson Mandela Rules" in order to honour the legacy of the late President of South Africa, who spent 27 years in prison in the course of his struggle: http://bit.ly/2LqKERw
  
''It is said that no one truly knows a nation until one has been inside its jails. A nation should not be judged by how it treats its highest citizens, but its lowest ones''. - Nelson Mandela
  
The Nelson Mandela Foundation is dedicating this year''s Mandela Day to Action Against Poverty, honouring Nelson Mandela''s leadership and devotion to fighting poverty and promoting social justice for all.
  
Speaking Out For Justice by Nelson Mandela
  
As long as poverty, injustice and gross inequality persist in our world, none of us can truly rest.
  
We shall never forget how millions of people around the world joined us in solidarity to fight the injustice of our oppression while we were incarcerated. Those efforts paid off and we are able to stand here and join the millions around the world in support of freedom against poverty.
  
Massive poverty and obscene inequality are such terrible scourges of our times — times in which the world boasts breathtaking advances in science, technology, industry and wealth accumulation.
  
We live in a world where knowledge and information have made enormous strides, yet millions of children are not in school. We live in a world where the AIDS pandemic threatens too many lives. Yet we spend more money on weapons than on ensuring treatment and support for the millions infected by HIV. It is a world of great promise and hope. It is also a world of despair, disease and hunger.
  
Overcoming poverty is not a gesture of charity. It is an act of justice. It is the protection of a fundamental human right, the right to dignity and a decent life. While poverty persists, there is no true freedom. The steps that are needed from the developed nations are clear.
  
The first is ensuring trade justice. I have said before that trade justice is a truly meaningful way for the developed countries to show commitment to bringing about an end to global poverty. The second is an end to the debt crisis for the poor countries. The third is to deliver much more aid and make sure it is of the highest quality... (Live 8 concert: Johannesburg, South Africa — July 2005)
  
On Building Peace
  
Peace is not just the absence of conflict; peace is the creation of an environment where all can flourish, regardless of race, colour, creed, religion, gender, class, caste, or any other social markers of difference. Religion, ethnicity, language, social and cultural practices are elements which enrich human civilization, adding to the wealth of our diversity. Why should they be allowed to become a cause of division, and violence? We demean our common humanity by allowing that to happen..
  
Soweto, South Africa - 12 July 2008
  
There is still too much discord, hatred, division, conflict and violence in our world here at the beginning of the 21st century. A fundamental concern for others in our individual and community lives would go a long way in making the world the better place we so passionately dreamt of. … It is so easy to break down and destroy. The heroes are those who make peace and build...
  
Address to the United Nations Special Committee against Apartheid - 22 June 1990
  
It surely must be one of the great ironies of our age that this august Assembly is addressed, for the first time in its 49 years, by a South African Head of State drawn from among the African majority of what is an African country.
  
Future generations will find it strange in the extreme that it was only so late in the 20th century that it was possible for our delegation to take its seat in the Assembly, recognized both by our people and the nations of the world as the legitimate representative of the people of our country.
  
It is indeed a most welcome thing that this august Organization will mark its 50th anniversary next year with the apartheid system having been vanquished and consigned to the past. That historic change has come about not least because of the great efforts in which the UN engaged to ensure the suppression of the apartheid crime against humanity.
  
In all we do, we have to ensure the healing of the wounds inflicted on all our people across the great dividing line imposed on our society by centuries of colonialism and apartheid. We must ensure that colour, race and gender become only a God-given gift to each one of us and not an indelible mark or attribute that accords a special status to any.
  
We must work for the day when we, as South Africans, see one another and interact with one another as equal human beings and as part of one nation united, rather than torn asunder, by its diversity. The road we shall have to travel to reach this destination will by no means be easy. All of us know how stubbornly racism can cling to the mind and how deeply it can infect the human soul. Where it is sustained by the racial ordering of the material world, as is the case in our country, that stubbornness can multiply a hundred-fold.
  
And yet however hard the battle will be, we will not surrender. Whatever the time it will take, we will not tire. The very fact that racism degrades both the perpetrator and the victim commands that, if we are true to our commitment to protect human dignity, we fight on until victory is achieved.
  
* Watch a live stream from South Africa of the 16th Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture, delivered by Barack Obama, with commentary from other South African leaders: http://www.nelsonmandela.org/content/page/annual-lecture-2018
  
http://www.mandeladay.com/ http://www.nelsonmandela.org/ http://www.nelsonmandela.org/nelson-mandela-100 http://www.un.org/en/events/mandeladay/legacy.shtml http://www.un.org/en/events/mandeladay/links.shtml http://www.walk-together.org/mandeladay/ http://www.walk-together.org/fightinequality/ http://www.walk-together.org/sparks-of-hope/

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