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‘Peace is the only solution’

Sep 25,2014 - Last updated at Sep 25,2014

His Majesty King Abdullah said “peace is the only solution”. I cannot agree more.

In recent months, developments in the Middle East made the region a focal point for the entire world.

King Abdullah, ever wiser, offered a solution when he stated that “world peace depends on understanding and coexistence among all people, of every belief”.

During his visit to Jordan on May 25, Pope Francis echoed this sentiment: “I thank Jordanians for their efforts to seek coexistence and lasting peace to the entire region.”

Unfortunately, few countries in the region are ready to embrace this peaceful philosophy and understanding, further intensifying war and conflicts.

I would like to take this opportunity to share a great example of promoting regional peace.

From 1949 to 2008, Taiwan experienced 60 years of active conflicts with China (PRC), with cross-strait relationships at times escalating to a flashpoint.

When Ma Ying-jeou took the presidential office in Taiwan in 2008, he had a profound understanding of the importance of peace, both for the growth of the country and for the welfare of the people.

He adopted King Abdullah’s strategy — solving disputes through peaceful means, promoting understanding and dialogue, and seeking peaceful coexistence — in his foreign policy, dramatically improving our relationship with China and contributing to peace in the Asia Pacific.

For this, People to People International (PTPI), founded in 1956 by US president Dwight D. Eisenhower to promote international understanding and world peace through cultural, educational and humanitarian activities, awarded the Eisenhower Peace Medallion to President Ma, on September 19, 2014, in recognition of his efforts to promote regional peace.

Other Peace Medallion recipients include former US presidents Jimmy Carter and Ronald Regan, as well as the former presidents of South Africa and Poland, Nelson Mandela and Lech Walesa.

PTPI Chairman Micah Kubic said the honour came for Ma’s “efforts to further cross-cultural communications, for his extraordinary leadership, and for exceptional contributions to world peace and understanding”.

PTPI presented Ma the medallion also primarily in recognition of his “East China Sea Peace Initiative”, proposed in August 2012, which calls on all parties in dispute over the Diaoyutai Islands to refrain from antagonistic actions, shelve controversies and not abandon dialogue, observe international law and resolve disputes through peaceful means, seek consensus on a regional code of conduct, and establish a mechanism for the joint exploration and development of resources.

Peace is the only solution. Peace is also a commitment.

To achieve and maintain it takes courage and determination.

Communication and sincere dialogue can prevent regional conflicts.

Peace in Asia Pacific can be replicated in the Middle East under the guidance and leadership of His Majesty. Bringing to fruition King Abdullah’s vision would be more than worthy of another Eisenhower Peace Medallion.

The writer is representative of the Commercial Office of ROC (Taiwan) in Jordan. He contributed this article to The Jordan Times.

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