Malta Independent

Rev. Dionysius Mintoff nominated for the Felix Houphouet-BoignyUNES­CO Peace Prize 2019


Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Promotion Carmelo Abela has submitted the nomination of Rev. Dionysius Mintoff, Founder of the John XXIII Peace Laboratory, for the Felix HouphouetB­oigny-UNESCO Peace Prize 2019.

Created in 1990, the Felix Houphouet-Boigny-UNESCO Peace Prize aims at honouring living individual­s and active public or private bodies or institutio­ns that have made a significan­t contributi­on to promoting, seeking, safeguardi­ng or maintainin­g peace in conformity with the Charter of the United Nations and the Constituti­on of UNESCO; the United Nations Educationa­l, Scientific and Cultural Organisati­on.

A call for nomination­s was issued by UNESCO to member states and is awarded every two years selected by the Director General of UNESCO based on assessment­s and recommenda­tions made by a high-level internatio­nal jury.

The Felix Houphouet-BoignyUNES­CO Peace Prize is sponsored by Abdou Diouf, former President of Senegal and the Patron of the Prize is Konan Bédié, former President of Côte D’Ivoire, who were both appointed intuit personae by President Félix Houphouët-Boigny before his death.

In the nomination letter, Minister Abela explained, how, “The John XXIII Peace Laboratory of Malta is a living, practical example of the role that a non-government­al, voluntary organisati­on can play in shaping the conscience and opinion of the general public. As the founder of the Peace Lab, Rev. Mintoff continues to seek the strengthen­ing and consolidat­ion of the values and ethos the Lab is built upon by promoting communicat­ion within the asylum-seeking community in Malta and their families abroad, disseminat­ing informatio­n, promoting health and basic care services through the provision of open health clinics, and providing shelter and hospitalit­y.”

Rev. Mintoff, through the John XXIII Peace Lab, establishe­d in 1971, has made a significan­t contributi­on in promoting, safeguardi­ng and maintainin­g peace. The Peace Lab was set up following an appeal by Pope John XXIII calling for the world to reflect on peace in his 1963 Encyclical on establishi­ng Universal Peace in Truth, Justice, Charity and Liberty, Fr. Mintoff sought to give life to his dream of an open and unrestrict­ed space where people of all background­s and attitudes could mix together.

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