Tourism has unique ability to promote peace everywhere: UNWTO chief

February 19, 2022 - 19:30

TEHRAN – World Tourism Organization secretary-general on Friday said tourism has a unique ability to promote peace between and among peoples everywhere.

“Tourism is the main bridge for building understanding. It has a unique ability to promote peace between and among peoples everywhere,” Zurab Pololikashvili said in a press release.

He lamented that tourism insiders across the globe cannot tolerate further pain and suffering caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

“After two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, people, as well as our whole societies and economies, have suffered enough. We cannot afford for this to continue.”

“We must rebuild and look to the future with hope, not fear,” he said, adding that peace and mutual understanding are essential ingredients for recovery.

“Now is the time to work together, and for diplomacy instead of conflict in all parts of the world. We must not allow political tensions to turn into a man-made crisis that will undermine our collective progress.”

Elsewhere in his remarks, Pololikashvili hailed United Nations’ call for settling disputes through peaceful solutions. “The UNWTO stands firmly with UN Secretary-General António Guterres in his call for all countries to settle disputes through peaceful means and not through conflict, and that they respect international security and justice at all times.”

As a part of the UN, giving a voice to people of all regions, backgrounds, and nationalities, UNWTO also believes that the spirit of international solidarity and shared values that define not just tourism but also our common humanity will prevail, Pololikashvili said. “We also hope that diplomatic efforts to avoid conflict continue and succeed.”