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Campaign Against War Toys and Firecrackers
Press Release - December 11, 2001

The national campaign against war toys and firecrackers or “knock-outs”, has again been launched by the Ecumenical Service for Peace. This campaign which aims at contributing to eliminate the culture of violence from children features at the end of every year especially following the indiscriminate ex-change of gifts that characterise Christmas and New Year celebrations.
The principal objectives of the campaign are :
  • to stop the buying of war toys and knock-outs for children ;
  • to stop the sale of these war toys and firecrackers or knock-outs ; and
  • to inform and mobilise the population against the use of these tools of violence.

    The campaign falls within the framework of activities to halt the proliferation of small arms and light weapons which constitute a permanent threat to peace and security, as it perpetuates and cultivates violence in our communities.

    Focus on this campaign is placed on children who constitute an important target group in building a culture of peace. As Proverb 22:6 reads, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.

    According to UNICEF, “Children need to learn that violence is not an acceptable means of ending disagreement or resolving conflict.”

    Meanwhile IANSA, holds that, “the proliferation and misuse of small arms undermines development ; guns are used as instruments to commit violent crimes ; they are the most frightening tools to express violence at home and endemic “culture of violence” teaches children that guns are glamorous.

    Therefore, rather than fool the children that to have a gun is to be powerful, we better let them know that strength nowadays lies in intelligence and tolerance. That what we see in movies are not real and in life guns kill people.

    Why then, buy toy guns for children when many other available toys can help develop talents in them ?

    We cannot claim to build a society of peace and security, at the same time nurturing violence and war in our children”, Rev. Norbert KENNE, founder of the Ecumenical Service for Peace.

    The Ecumenical Service for Peace has a mission to contribute to non-violent social transformation. Founded on a Christian base it aims a setting up a society of participation based on justice, peace and reconciliation.

    Jack ENOH EBEN
    Public Relations

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