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Raising Peace ANZAC Day statement 2024

This ANZAC Day 2024, a network of Australian peace organisations remembers the men and women of all nations, including First Nations, who were killed and injured by war. We stand together to say without equivocation: the best way to honour their memory is to end war and commit to peace.
It is remarkable that Australians are being told that the lesson of ANZAC Day, built on a calamitous campaign at Gallipoli, is not that war is a disastrous endeavour, but rather that war is noble. The trauma and moral injury of war remain unrecognised and unacknowledged.
A nation that tries to found its identity on its military past risks engendering a ‘war first’ mentality in generations to come, rather than one that embraces peace. You cannot pick and choose which wars to honour. The relative clarity of the fight against Nazi Germany is absent from the Frontier War’s campaign of conquering Australia’s First Nations people, of the colonial Boer War, of the First World War’s horrors, or of any of the wars since that have been fought in support of United States’ hegemony.
Humanity needs to outgrow war. A tide of peace organisations grew out of World War 1 and the United Nations Charter, written in the shadow of World War 2, codified a peaceful global movement to ‘promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom’.
Today we possess incredible tools of diplomacy, communication and of technology that enable us to resolve disputes without resorting to violence.
Australia helped to write the UN Charter, but all too quickly our leaders were willing to destroy more young Australian lives in war. In Korea, Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan we fought in wars with little justification and disastrous outcomes.
Australia’s current fear of China, bolstered by the poorly conceived and costly AUKUS initiative, is misguided. It is reminiscent of WWI, as the world’s great powers are seemingly incapable of changing course away from conflict. A conventional war between the USA and China would be massively destructive to people and to the environment. The threat of nuclear annihilation makes it unthinkable.
Nations are responsible for assuring the security of their people. They can defend their borders by civil or military means; they can be friends and partners with neighbours; and they can contribute to global peace through myriad channels. Our defence forces can defend our land without destroying someone else’s. They can contribute to peace-keeping as part of sanctioned international operations. But there is no justification for military adventurism by any nation.

By committing itself to peace, Australia can best honour all those soldiers, family and community members killed, injured, and traumatised in war. In every international engagement it can commit to asking first: what is the way to resolve this peacefully? It can end the intrusion of the defence industry into our schools and universities, replacing it with investment in peace focused education. Australia could become the world’s leading proponent of First Nations approaches to peace-building.
It can become a champion of scholarship and practice of peace-making, peace-keeping and peace-building.
On ANZAC Day 2024, Raising Peace urges all Australians to remember the fallen and work for a peaceful future for us all.
Issued by:

The Voice

Australians will be asked later this year to vote for the inclusion in the Australian constitution of a clause recognising Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders as First Peoples, and establishing a representative body that can advise parliament and the executive arm of government on issues of importance to indigenous people.

The Voice and recognition are both landmark issues for the country. IVP supports both, and urges all Australians to give consideration to voting Yes, to these straightforward changes.

Because the constitution is not front of mind; indeed these changes will be of immediate interest only within the legal community; does not mean that these proposed changes are not important, and positively affecting how we see ourselves, and how the world sees us. The format of the change came from indigenous people themselves; it is modest in conception but profound in its resetting of how Australians share the continent, within its deep history of human occupation, and its recent reconstitution as an extension of British nation building.

The Voice will place indigenous lives at the heart of Australia’s governance, not at its fringes. It represents a stage in our growth, bringing the majority with their origins in other continents and those who can claim those with origins in the thousands of years of Australia’s pre settlement history on a common footing. In this respect it is a step to bettering the lives of indigenous and non indigenous alike, respecting the just claims to equity within the larger Australian polity.

International Volunteers for Peace.

Notice of IVP AGM 2023

Dear IVP Member,

The 27th AGM of International Volunteers for Peace will take place on Saturday 10 June 2023, between 2 and 3pm. An agenda and other meeting papers will be circulated ahead of time.

At this meeting, a narrative report and annual financial report will be formally presented; and a new Executive Committee will be voted in. Nominations for any of the positions of Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, and five committee members should reach up to the time of the meeting. Likewise any matter members may wish to raise.

Following the meeting you are warmly invited to stay for a talk on “IVP at the Goulburn Show – a 5 year partnership”

Stephen Horn

Join with Google Meet
Join by phone
(AU) +61 3 8594 7065
PIN: 597003228

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Saturday 10 Jun 2023 ⋅ 2pm – 3pm (Eastern Australia Time – Sydney)

Urgent call for volunteers – Environment and Waste Upcycling

Dear IVS partners and Friends

I am writing this email to share with you the special workcamp that CYA cooperated with the Ministry of Environment Cambodia and 5 different project partners in Asia and Europe to organize a special workcamp on “Environment and Waste Upcycling” from 5 – 17 June 2023. We now urgently need your motivated volunteers to take part in this special workcamp so hope you can share this project among your members or promote it to your volunteers.

I attached the poster and the details of the project for your reference. Looking forward to receiving your motivated volunteers soon!

Best regards;

Sophat Sorn (Mr.)
Incoming Program Officer
(+855) 10 678 669 |
#84, 2004, Sangkat Kakab, Khan Po Sen Chey,
Phnom Penh, CAMBODIA.
regular working hours: Monday – Friday 8 am – 4 pm (GMT+7)

Environment & Waste upcycling

Building For Peace

Registrations are now open for our ANZAC weekend workshop Building for Peace. Through this workshop, being held both in person and online, participants will be able to learn about some of the current challenges to peace, explore peaceful alternatives and – most importantly – take action!

As Australia positions itself for future conflicts, many of us feel outraged and helpless. But this need not be so. The right language, tools and actions can empower us, get our leaders to listen and bring about change. Our day of learning and action will equip you with some of those tools.

On the ANZAC weekend as we remember those who were killed in service of this country, Raising Peace invites you to join us in person and on-line, featuring the following events:

  • Speakers and small group discussions
  • Practicing non-violent communication
  • Taking action for peace

Our speakers include:

  • Dr Keith Suter with an overview of Australia’s geopolitical context
  • Prof Wanning Sun on challenging the media narrative
  • First Nations panellists on the Voice, Treaty and Makarrata.

Our festival will be both in person and online. Registrations are essential for both.

  • Online participation: via Zoom
  • In person: Quakers Meeting House, 119 Devonshire St, Surry Hills, Sydney. Close to Central Station.
Register Now – all sessions are free

Dear friends

As 2023 begins, there has been a lot of drum-beating recently about the supposed inevitability of a war with China. But this is not the only perspective on the present situation! Raising Peace members the Marrickville Peace Group and Independent and Peaceful Australia Network are hosting an event at Marrickville Town Hall (and on live stream) this Sunday: 

Can war be avoided or will our peace be shattered?

Hosted by Mary Kostakidis, the forum will feature a diverse and distinguished panel: Prof Bob CarrSenator David ShoebridgeDr Alison Broinowski and from the US, Col. Lawrence Wilkerson.

Sunday 19 March, 4.30 PM, Marrickville Town Hall

Come in person or watch online at the Marrickville Peace Group’s Facebook page.

Raising Peace will also share a recording of the event on our website

We meet on the eve of the 20th anniversary of the invasion of Iraq. In 2003, before the War in Iraq began, millions of people marched in protest. Despite this, the invasion went ahead, because of lies told by the two chief war protagonists: the USA and the UK. Those lies destroyed trust in political leadership and redefine the meaning of citizen responsibility. 

Lies succeeded in dragging us into the Iraq invasion. Is that pattern being repeated? Are we being led into a new war (against China) by new lies? 

Since 2003, a continual process of military expansion, preparing the nation for war, has taken place. Respected defence strategist, Hugh White, has suggested that Australia is sleepwalking into a war with China. 

As citizens, we, the people, need to wake up and act! Political leadership must be challenged. It is our responsibility is to ensure that war is avoided. 

War creates terrible suffering, the loss of countless lives, the waste of untold resources. International co-operation, so urgently needed in the face of the climate crisis, becomes impossible. The costs of war are far too high, while the benefits of PEACE are immeasurable. 

It is up to us to steer the nation in the direction of peace! 

During March 2023 three reports to parliament, of vital concern, will be released: 

The Defence Strategic Review, 
The Report on War Powers Reform, and 
The Report of the Submarine Task Force and AUKUS agreement (due 18 months after September, 2021). 

We have a collective responsibility, a duty, even, to counter the lies. We must get Australia off the path that leads to war. This is a job for every body!

Join an international team working on SCI’s Strategic Plan

Dear Friends,

This is a reminder that we are looking for people to join the SPDT.  As you know our current Strategic Plan is finishing this year so time to start developing the next one.  This is a wonderful opportunity to be directly involved in the strategic direction of SCI for the next for years.  The IEC is asking for interested people to join the strategic Plan.  We encourage people from all continents to apply.

In short

Description of Tasks:Evaluate the 2020-23 Strategic plan based on the Plan of Action of the past four years. Develop a new Strategic Plan for 2024-27  partly based on the results of the PoA, feedback from the Vision Seminars in 2022 and feedback  from branches.Timeline and commitmentThe SPDT will hold various online meetings to discuss the impact of the current SP and how to develop the next SP over the next months with the aim of having a new SP draft by June/July 2023.  A final meeting will be held in Antwerp at the IS premises to finalise the final draft of the new SP in June 2023We estimate that your time commitment will be attending and participating in the online meetings and some prep time before and after the meetings about 4 to 5 hours per week up to June/July.The IC and IS will take care of the logistics of organising the meetings and collating and disseminating documents.How to Apply: Please send your motivation letter to Inge at indicating your experience in strategic planning and anything which may be relevant.Deadline of Applications: Thursday 2nd February

More information can be found here .

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Warm wishes,Inge

Inge Saris (she/her) 

International Coordinator 

SCI International Secretariat 
Antwerp – Belgium 
Office : +32 (0)3 226 57 27

Colloquium on the abolition of the military on Costa Rica

Colloquium on the abolition of the military on Costa Rica

Photo by Sunguk Kim on Unsplash

On 1 December 1948 the then President of Costa Rica, Jose Figueres Ferrer, abolished the military after a civil conflict earlier that year over a disputed electoral outcome. This was followed up a year later in 1949 by the introduction of Article 12 of the Costa Rican Constitution which provides that “the army as a permanent institution is abolished”. The budget previously dedicated to the military is now dedicated to security, education and culture.

Join the Australian National Centre for Latin American Studies/ANCLAS, the Embassy of Costa Rica and a panel of speakers from academia, diplomacy and civil society to discuss (drawing on Costa Rica’s experience) the rationale for abolition of the military, the social, political and economic impacts of doing so and whether it could serve as a model for other countries to follow a similar course. Speakers will make brief presentations during a roundtable panel discussion followed by a period of comment, questions and answers from the fellow panellists and the on-line audience.


Noel Campbell (Co-Director, Australian National Centre for Latin American Studies, ANU)


  • Armando Vargas Araya (Ambassador of Costa Rica to Australia)
  • Ned Dobos (Senior Lecturer, International and Political Studies, UNSW)
  • Marianne Hanson (Associate Professor of International Relations, University of Queensland)
  • Rita Warleigh (Founder, International Volunteers for Peace SCI in Australia)
  • Sheri Ward (MA candidate, UN University for Peace, Costa Rica)
  • Lizette Brenes Bonilla (Vice Chancellor Research, Universidad Estatal a Distancia, Costa Rica)
  • Alberto Mejía (Former Chief of the Defence Force of Colombia, former Ambassador of Colombia to Australia)
  • Sue Wareham (President, Medical Association for Prevention of War)
  • Carlos Moreira (MA candidate, Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Queensland)
  • Alexandra Bonnie (Senior Program Office, International Organisation for Migration)
  • Stuart Rees (Emeritus Professor, Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Sydney)

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[Sci-exchange] Invitation to Webinar on antimilitarism [Monday, 15/08]

Dear partners and friends,

We invite you to a webinar hosted by young people at an international antimilitarist youth exchange “Not Your Soldier” taking place in Austria at the moment!

No war anywhere! The current war in Ukraine has changed Europe and the world massively in the past months. Prices of food, oil, gas and electricity are rising fast. And this in the midst of an ongoing ecological crisis, pandemic and militarized conflicts for example in Yemen, Myanmar, Tigray, Palestine and Syria. How can we respond to this as young people? What can we do to bring about longlasting peace? How can we stand up against war and militarism?

In all the countries participating in the youth exchange that hosts this webinar, the answer seems to be: Young people need to go to the military. Military service – or an alternative service to it – is obligatory for young men (or what the government perceives to be “men”) or they are thinking about introducing it. What does it mean for our societies that half of the young population is obligated to join the military? What experiences have we personally made around this?

The webinar will take place on Monday 15 August at 16:30 Central European Time (CET). Join us via this Zoom link:
The webinar will mostly be discussion-based. Get in conversation with our participants around military conscription, militarization and what antimilitarist options we have out of this.

We will be very happy and grateful if you would join us and would appreciate it if you could share the event and spread the word!Best,

Team of SCI Austria


Service Civil International Austria
A – 1010 Wien, Schottengasse 3a/1/4/59
Tel.: +43 (0)1 535 91 08Bürozeiten: Montag bis Donnerstag von 9:30 bis 13:30 Uhr
ZVR-Nummer: 635 15 1139

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