Peace Day

JEF on Peace Day: Time for Europe to act for peace!

Pan-European public action on Peace Day for a Single European Foreign Policy

, by Åsa Gunvén

JEF on Peace Day: Time for Europe to act for peace!

Europe is the world biggest peace project and indeed the creation of lasting peace was what motivated federalists after the Second World War to fight for the removal of European borders. But despite the success of the European peace project, the Balkan wars and the numerous armed conflicts around the globe exemplify that striving for peace is still necessary. Sadly, the absence of a single European foreign policy prevents Europe to act adequately in these conflict situations and to be a strong actor for peace. This is why JEF wanted to use Peace Day to highlight the need for Europe to act as a strong global actor for peace, global justice and international law trough a single European voice.

On Peace Day, 21st of September JEFers across Europe took to the streets to state their demand for a Single European Foreign Policy that would untie the hands of the EU. With signs demanding “Let Europe act for Peace – Single European Policy now!”, JEFers symbolised the inability of Europe to act for peace by handcuffing themselves. JEF´s pan-European public action took place simultaneously in Paris, Verona, Strasbourg, Bern, Prague, Skopje, Geneva, Belgrade, Brussels and other places across Europe.

In Macedonia for example, the protest was staged for over 12 hours right in front of the EU representation office. In Switzerland JEF campaigned against the neutrality principle that hinders Switzerland to take part in shaping the world of tomorrow and even managed to get a meeting with the state secretary of foreign affairs to express their demands.

JEF also sent its message to every member of the European Parliament and all member states governments to make its demand for a Europe that can act for peace and moves away from short sighted nationalism. Going jointly to the streets in numerous cities across all of Europe, JEF stated its demand loud and clear – just as Europe could if allowed to speak with a single voice.

Global peace and justice can not be achieved over night. But the creation of a single European foreign policy is only dependent on political will and could be implemented without delay – for example by the adoption of the European constitution. Clearly Europe’s leaders are not prepared to untie the hands of the EU to let it be a strong global actor for peace and justice. This is why civil society movements, especially the federalists, must show how to do it and what the consequences are if failing to do so.

Finally, us young people must be prepared to fight for a world governed by peace, multilateralism and international law, and show the way forward when our political leaders fail to do so!

In order to see how the different actions looked like, check out the picture gallery of JEF-Europe.

Background information about Peace Day:

*Peace day was initiated by the UN as a day for cease fire around the world (see the UN resolution

It has since developed to a day to highlight the striving for peace in all parts of the world by events and campaigns organised by NGOs and international organisations etc.

JEF’s contribution to these activities and those of many others can be found under that is promoting peace actions around the world on this day.

The 21st of September is also the day that the Hertenstein decleration was signed, statings its demand for a federal peaceful and democratic Europe. You can found this declaration, that is also the foundation of Union of European Federalists (UEF) under


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