The Olympic Truce will take effect on Friday, seven days before the opening of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, and will last until September 12th, seven days after the Paralympic Games are complete.
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres issued a statement to commemorate the start of the Olympic truce “During the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, urging on all conflicting parties to observe the Olympic Truce. People and nations can use this brief respite to form long-term cease-fires and develop paths to long-term peace.
According to Antonio Guterres, “In a few days, athletes from around the world will come together for the Olympic and Paralympic Games. They have had to overcome enormous obstacles to participate in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. We need to show the same strength and solidarity in our efforts to bring peace to our world. The Olympic Truce is a traditional call to silence the guns while the Games proceed”.
The UN Secretary-General said, “Seeking peace and uniting around common goals is even more important this year, as we strive to end the pandemic and build a strong sustainable and inclusive global recovery”.
Following the resolution voted in December 2019, the President of the UN General Assembly, Volkan Bozkir, issued a solemn appeal to the UN Member States for the implementation of the Olympic Truce during the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.
The resolution, titled “Building a peaceful and better world through sport and the Olympic Ideal,” was passed unanimously by the UN General Assembly’s 74th Session and co-sponsored by 186 of the UN’s 193 Member States, demonstrating the UN’s international community’s recognition of the power of sport and the relevance of the Olympic Games to bring the world together in peaceful competition in order to provide hope for a better future.
The Olympic Truce – “Ekecheira” – has a long history of ensuring a cease-fire in all hostilities, allowing athletes and spectators to safely travel to and participate in the Olympic Games. The resolution emphasizes that the Olympic principles of peace, solidarity, and respect are as relevant now as they were almost 3,000 years ago in Greece when the ancient Olympic Games were first held.