Press conference with Jeremy Gilley, Founder, Peace One Day and Jude Law, Ambassador, Peace One Day

1 Sep 2008

Press conference with Jeremy Gilley, Founder, Peace One Day and Jude Law, Ambassador, Peace One Day

KABUL - Transcript of press conference by Jeremy Gilley, Founder, Peace One Day and Jude Law, Ambassador, Peace One Day.

JEREMY GILLEY: My name is Jeremy Gilley. I am the producer, director, writer of the film The Day After Peace and I am very pleased to introduce my good friend, Jude Law.

JUDE LAW: I am very proud to be Ambassador for Peace One Day a non-political and impartial organisation.

I became Ambassador little over a year ago before Jeremy and I made our first trip to Afghanistan.

I work in films and as a film maker I was fascinated by Jeremy using the medium to create change and to inspire people.

Of all the films I’ve been in - my contribution to this one is something I am the most proud of.

JEREMY GILLEY: So Peace Day, 21 September is a day of ceasefire and non- violence and was established in 2001.

I had this idea to try to create such a day in 1999 and after travelling the world and meeting people like the Secretary-General Kofi Annan, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and Mary Robinson. I am delighted to inform you that every member state of the United Nations unanimously adopted the creation of this day.

I made a film about that journey but when I finished and was listening to the reaction, I could hear the cynics’ voices saying the day will never work, it is just symbolism and that worried me.

So I decided to make another film to document lives being saved on the day so that we could prove that Peace Day was far from symbolic - that not only it could unite the world but that it could also save people’s lives.

And through the support of the United Nations and particularly UNICEF at that time, the opportunity came up to come to Afghanistan and that was very exciting to think that Afghanistan could be the first place to document live-saving activities. As I was preparing to travel here I met Jude, I asked him to support with some awareness and he said to me: “Where are you going next?” I told him I was coming to Afghanistan and I invited him. I didn’t think he would say yes but of course he did.

And with the support of UNAMA and of course with UNICEF we did a call to action 63 days before peace day last year in the hope that the people of Afghanistan could inspire the world and show their commitment to peace by observing this day. The results were beyond our wildest dreams: lives were saved and people acted and you can see that in the film The Day After Peace.

JUDE LAW: When I left Kabul last year I was hugely moved not by the conflict that I read so much about, but by the people’s courage and the peoples sense of hope. It seemed they really wanted to make this day, Peace Day work and they did it.

They marched and they prayed and lives were saved.

And so the people of Afghanistan are the heroes and the stars of this film.

And as we said back then it is now Peace One Day’s commitment to take this film as a message from the people of Afghanistan to the rest of the world and I can already confirm it’s being shown in dozens of places across the world - Sao Paulo, London, Dubai, Paris, Geneva, Goa, Beirut, Nigeria, Warsaw Stockholm, South Africa and Zimbabwe to name but a few.

JEREMY GILLEY: So we’ve come to Afghanistan on this trip to show you the film The Day After Peace.

We are also showing the film to government, embassies, NGOs, civil society, UN agencies to inspire them and to show them the incredible work and the results that they achieved in the hope that we can continue the incredible momentum that was established last year.

We are also giving the film free to Tolo TV so that the people of the country can see it.

The film has been translated into Dari and with the support of UNAMA, the film will also be translated into Pashto and also dubbed, so the millions of people of this country can see the incredible efforts that they made, and know that that effort and that energy and that statement is being seen by millions of people around the world. So The Day After Peace will send a very positive and constructive message coming from out of Afghanistan and will be shown to the world.

There are major commitments to this year already.

The Minister of Education, Minister Atmar told us yesterday that now and forever every young person in this country will be informed of the day in the hope of inspiring them and empowering them to become a driving force behind the vision of a united and sustainable world.

UNICEF in conjunction with the World Health Organisation and the Ministry of Public Health will once again be carrying out vaccinations; when you see the film, the efforts of UNICEF and those partners was extraordinary with 1.4 million children vaccinated against polio in this country last year.

UNAMA has once again called to action all UN agencies to be active and I am sure the results of that will also be equally incredible.

The Afghan Red Crescent is continuing its great effort to involve people throughout the country. We saw Fatima Gilani last night. Once again they are marking the day and even more people this year will be involved.

There are many commitments from civil society, NGOs and elsewhere throughout the world because of the example that happened in Afghanistan. Things will happen in every single member state of the United Nations.

For example, the One Day One Goal campaign orchestrated by Peace One Day and supported by Puma has established football matches in the members states of the United Nations. Football has always brought people together in areas of conflict and beyond and is a great way to inter-culturally cooperate on Peace Day. And there will football played globally with the One Day One Goal campaign.

So its working, the day is working and it’s growing fast.

JUDE LAW: So finally our statement to you is: “Please mark the day. The need now is greater than ever before.”

If you did something last year, do it again.

If you are learning about Peace Day on 21 September through this call to action, then please think of a way of you can get involved, it can be as simple as saying sorry. And make that commitment.

It’s really very simple: “What will you do to make peace on 21 September?”

And this is also a word to the journalists from around the world because whoever you get the message to gives them an opportunity to mark the day. It’s just as important that everyone responds to this call to action as indeed the people of Afghanistan.

You can make your commitment on

JEREMY GILLEY: So, finally please do all you can to mark Peace Day 21 September. By working together, there will be peace one day.