The World Travel and Tourism Council is meeting in Kigali, in the East African country Rwanda today and will open its first global summit in Africa.
Little did US President Biden know when awarding a lifetime achievement award to Louis D’Amore the founder of the International Institute for Peace Through Tourism, how relevant the connection between peace and tourism would become within just one short month.
In the meantime, all eyes are on the Middle East and Ukraine. Our hearts are bleeding with all the innocent people who’ve perished and the suffering of those who survived. People everywhere and from all religions are praying for peace.
There is hardly any better location for the 25th WTTC Summit to send a timely reminder to the world of tourism and beyond, a warning, and a call for peace.
Haybina Hao is an American journalist and supporter of the International Institute for Peace through Tourism. She is currently in Kigali and sent this note today.
Let me also join you to share one experience here in Kigali. I visited the Kigali Genocide Memorial yesterday and cried the entire time. I couldn’t sleep last night.Haybina Halo attending the WTTC Summit in Kigali, Rwanda
Two million Tutsis were killed within three months in 1994. Today 250,000 victims are buried in the gardens of the Memorial.
The museum exhibition starts with former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon’s quote on the wall:
“We failed in Rwanda. We failed in Srebrenica. But you are writing a different future.”
The Memorial is a very powerful place to carry history and to serve as a reminder to the people of Rwanda and the world about peace and humanity.
The Children’s Room ends with a statement that says,
“The children who survived are committed to living together, not as Hutu or Tutsis, but as Rwandans.”
This week all eyes in global tourism are on Rwanda and the WTTC Global Summit.
Also, the eyes of the world are on the Middle East. Our hearts are bleeding with all the innocent people who’ve perished and those who survived so far continue to suffer. IIPT Founder Louis D’Amore a devoted catholic is asking the world
WTTC Delegates: We need to pray for Peace
Tourism is a claimed peace industry and every delegate attending the WTTC Global Summit in Kigali is also an ambassador of peace. Every member of the tourism industry has an obligation to join in this prayer, regardless of religion, nationality, and standing in the sector.
It takes however a lot more than a prayer for tourism to maintain its stand as a peace industry. The world of tourism will watch those leaders attending the WTTC Summit in Rwanda and they will expect more than a routine call for peace. They expect some answers.
When Mother Teresa received the Nobel Peace Prize, she received the Award “in the name of the hungry, of the naked, of the homeless, of the blind, of the lepers, of all those who feel unwanted, unloved, uncared for throughout society”. Those were the people she ministered to for most of her life.
With all that is going on in the world and each nation we call home, this quote from Mother Teresa struck a deep chord within me; and I wanted to share it with you, wrote Timothy Marshall, a member of IIPT.
It’s a reminder to everyone in the World
We are Family!
The tourism world around the world today is looking at Israel, Palestine, Ukraine, and Russia. And those who claim to represent the largest companies of the tourism industry, that claim to be political leaders in tourism, are meeting in the perfect African country that understands peace.
The world of tourism must be looking at those leaders joining together in Kigali this week for a sign of peace, and a sign to remind the world how tourism is connected to world peace. This is also an opportunity for Africa to show leadership and offer guidance in this disturbed world and the role tourism plays in it.