On 21 September 2011, MINURSO celebrated the International Day of Peace
This year - on its 30th anniversary - the theme of the United Nations International Day of Peace is "Peace and Democracy: make your voice heard".
The Officer in Charge of MINURSO and Force Commander, Major-General Abdul Hafiz, presided over a short and simple ceremony celebrating the Day at the Mission Parade Ground.
Major-General Abdul Hafiz read the message of the Secretary-General to MINURSO personnel (military observers, troops, UN police officers, international and locally-recruited civilians, UNVs) who had gathered for the celebration and addressed the staff, recalling the United Nations' daily commitment to peace.
Also in attendance was the Senior Representative of the African Union, Ambassador Yilma Tadesse.
MINURSO also celebrated the International Day of Peace at its Tindouf Liaison Office in Algeria.
The International Day of Peace was established in 1981 by Resolution 36/67 of the United Nations General Assembly to coincide with its opening session, which is held annually on the third Tuesday of September.
The first Peace Day was observed in September 1982. In 2001, the General Assembly, by unanimous vote, adopted resolution 55/282, which established 21 September as an annual day of non-violence and cease-fire.
The UN invites all nations and people to honour a cessation of hostilities during International Peace Day, and to otherwise commemorate the Day through education and public awareness on issues related to peace.