World Summit 2017 at the Korean National Assembly
IAPP Global Assembly at the World Summit 2017
2015 Sunhak Peace Prize Laureates
Kiribati President H.E. Anote Tong and Indian Fisheries scientist Hon. Dr. M. Vijay Gupta
From the World Summit 2015
From the World Summit 2014
From the World Summit 2014

Indeed, if the whole world were to embrace the vision of the late Reverend Moon and Mrs. Moon, promoting reconciliation, coexistence and cooperation, the world certainly would be a better and a more peaceful world. And I do congratulate you, Dr. Moon and members of the Sunhak Peace Prize Committee, for inaugurating an initiative of immense international significance.

H.E. Anote Tong, President, Kiribati

H.E. Anote Tong, Sunhak Peace Prize Laureate, is President of Kiribati, a small island nation located in the Pacific Ocean that is threatened with submersion by 2050 because of the rising sea levels caused by climate change. The sea-level rise is causing food and water shortages, reduced land area, overpopulation and rapid increase in diseases. President Tong believes that climate change is the largest moral challenge of the 21st Century, and has appealed to the UN General Assembly to address its dangers. President Tong promotes the Pacific Island Nations Marine Protected Area Network to conserve 10 percent of the world’s oceans.




Address to World Summit 2015, Seoul, Korea, August 27 to 31, 2015

Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon; Dr. Il Sik Hong; the speaker of the National Assembly of the Republic of Korea, together with distinguished excellencies and delegates who are present here this morning; the president and members of the Universal Peace Federation; and, of course, distinguished members of the Sunhak Peace Prize Committee; my colleague and co-recipient of the award, Dr. Modadugu Gupta; and, of course, my wife, who is here to join me on this occasion; friends, ladies and gentlemen:

As is customary in my tradition, allow me to share with you our Kiribati traditional blessings of Kam na bane ni Mauri, meaning “May you all be blessed.”

I wish to begin by taking a moment to pay a very special tribute to the late Rev. Sun Myung Moon and to Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon for their lifelong mission and work, which have been underpinned by the ultimate goal of achieving global peace for all. Indeed, had the global community embraced these visions of promoting reconciliation, coexistence and cooperation, the world today certainly would be a much better and more peaceful place.

I also wish to congratulate Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon, together with the chair and the members of the committee, for this inaugural Sunhak Peace Prize Award Ceremony, an initiative of immense international significance in continuing Rev. Moon’s legacy of “One family under God.” For my part, I am truly honored to be a co-recipient of this inaugural award, the Sunhak Peace Prize for 2015.

The last twelve years for me have been filled with a lot of challenges, starting from when my people elected me in 2003 to guide them toward a safe, secure and prosperous future. Upon accepting that honor, I also accepted the responsibility that came with it, one of which is to ensure that their voices, their issues, would be heard, especially within the international arena. In receiving this most prestigious award, it is indeed my fervent hope that it will lend greater force to the urgency of the message which over the years I have been trying to communicate to the global community, about this existential threat posed by climate change to the survival of future generations of my people and those in similar situations.

Climate change affects all of us in varying degrees of severity, but for my people and all those who live on low-lying atoll islands, we are at the frontline of this global calamity, with the very real possibility that our islands, our livelihoods, our homes, our identity as a people and as a culture may indeed cease to exist well within this century.

As leaders, we all have a duty to protect and safeguard those people for whom we are responsible. As parents and grandparents, it is only natural and instinctive that we would do so with our lives, if necessary, for those who rely on us for their security. And I do believe it is the moral obligation of all humanity to ensure that all future generations be guaranteed a safe and secure future.

Ladies and gentlemen, it is against this background that I honor and acknowledge the most notable contribution of my fellow awardee, Dr. Gupta, whose lifelong work will remainforever an inherent feature of the ongoing work on global food security. It is an honor to be considered alongside such a worthy fellow awardee as Dr. Gupta. 

Let me also take this opportunity to acknowledge the one person who has supported and tolerated me throughout the years, especially in those dire moments of frustration and despair when I felt a deep sense of futility that no one was listening to me.Ladies and gentlemen, I want to acknowledge my wife, Meme. This award is as much for her as it is for all our dozen or so grandchildren, as well as those grandchildrenwhose voices we have tried to represent over the years. For their sake, let us do what is right for them.

In closing, let me share with you our very traditional blessing of Te Mauri, Te Raoi, Te Tabomoa, which means “Health, peace and prosperity be upon us all.”

Thank you, ladies and gentlemen.

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