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International Youth Day
By S Mukhtar

"Yes dear."

"12 August 2017: Seventeenth International Youth Day observed. Uncle, why that?"

"Dear, the present generation of youth is the largest in history. Many countries presently suffering from unrest or armed conflict have youth comprising the majority. And so, the needs and aspirations of youth must be considered; all youth must have health care, all basic services, easy access to quality education, all opportunities to utilize their potential and achieve their goals, and their role as active contributors must be promoted. If youth are excluded from social, economic, political, and decision-making spheres and processes, there shall be violence and violent forms of conflict. At all costs, youth have to be included - this is the golden key to building and sustaining peace within nations and internationally. And dear therefore the International Youth Day came to be observed."

"But Uncle, how born the Day exactly?"

"Yes. In 1998, World Conference of Ministers Responsible for Youth (Lisbon; 8-12 August) recommended that 12 August be declared International Youth Day. Then on 17 December 1999, United Nations General Assembly, vide its resolution 54/120, endorsed the recommendation. And soon on 12 August 2000 was the first International Youth Day observed."

"Uncle, good…O very good!"

"Dear, more to it. In 2015, Security Council Resolution 2250 highly stressed that the youth are the most important agents of change, preventing conflict, and sustaining peace. Further, in 2016, Security Council Resolution 2282 reaffirmed that youth can and must play their critically important role in deterring and resolving conflicts and ensuring the success of peace building and peacekeeping efforts."

"Uncle, please, some themes of the Day?"

"Yes, year wise. 2017: Youth Building Peace; 2016: The Road to 2030: Eradicating Poverty and Achieving Sustainable Consumption and Production; 2015: Youth and Civic Engagement; 2014: Youth and Mental Health."

"Uncle, what then are the activities of the Day?"

"Yes. All round the world, workshops, concerts, cultural events, and meetings of government officials and youth organizations are organized and cultural and legal issues surrounding youth addressed; all youth are given full liberty to organize all such activities as raise awareness about their condition in their country; and also organized is a commemoration of the Day at United Nations Headquarters in New York. Yes, the celebrations promote better awareness of the World Programme of Action for Youth."

"Uncle, we too would join the celebrations but…."

"What but?"

"I am not a full youth yet and you are an old man. How can we?"

"O my dearest, the Day is not to be celebrated by youth only. All, yes one and all men and women must celebrate and we two too will…you be fully ready…my good luck! Go we must…and we will! You write a beautiful address. I will have you reading it out to an audience."

"Uncle Great: Zindabad!"

News Updated at : Friday, August 11, 2017
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