Sign up for the ING newsletter to receive news and announcements.
A Call for the Right of Self-Determination, Early and Consistent Diplomacy to End All Conflict, and Peace as Our Mutual Goal to Prevent Wars.
As a peace-making organization working at the grassroots level, ING is deeply concerned with the threat to peace anywhere in the world. Today, the world’s attention is rightly fixed on Ukraine, as it strives to repel a Russian military invasion. We stand with President Biden in his solidarity with the people of Ukraine that he expressed so powerfully in his State of the Union address yesterday evening. Together with most of the world, we strongly denounce the Russian government’s actions, and call for a settlement of the issues through diplomacy and negotiation, rather than by force of arms.
Only peace can secure a future for the peoples of both Ukraine and Russia, and for the peoples of the world who are threatened by the danger of the escalation of this conflict into a worldwide conflagration.
The worldwide repercussions of the invasion of Ukraine remind us that we live in a global community, where the future of any one people is deeply intertwined with the future of all of us. The Russian attack on Ukraine, which violates the fundamental right of self-determination of the Ukrainian people, cannot be seen as isolated from the struggles of peoples around the world for that same right of self-determination and other fundamental human rights, including, to name but a few, the Uyghurs, the Kashmiris, the Palestinians, and others, including Indigenous Peoples in the US and around the world.
But even as we denounce Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine, we are reminded of the long and terrible history of military interventions in the affairs and lands of peoples around the world by the United States and other Western powers. Our concern for the people of Ukraine must open our eyes to the urgent need to work for peace throughout the world and for upholding the freedom of all peoples, which is the only sure foundation of peace.
Of particular immediate concern is the flood of refugees that the war against Ukraine has generated. We call for the nations of the world, and in particular those of Europe, to welcome these people and ensure their safety and well-being through the duration of this crisis. At the same time, we call on the nations of the world, and again on those of Europe in particular, to welcome refugees from other troubled areas of the world with the same openness and compassion that they are showing to refugees from Ukraine. It is worth remembering, in this connection, that Ukraine, like Russia and most of the rest of Europe today, is a multiethnic, multicultural, and multireligious nation, with at least 360,000 Jews (who have a long history in the country) and at least 400,000 Muslims, with mosques in all the major cities, in addition to a large population of Orthodox, Catholic, and Protestant Christians.
Our religious traditions and teachings, diverse though they are in many respects, all speak with one voice on the necessity of working for a peace founded on justice and freedom.
For Muslims, the call to peace is rooted in the common nature or fitra that all human beings share and in our common divine origin. Other faiths and worldviews call with equal urgency for a world of mutual respect, understanding, and peace. As we work for peace in Ukraine, let us be even more mindful of the peoples around the world struggling for their right to self-determination, social justice, and peace.
How to Help Ukrainians:
1. The Ukrainian Red Cross Society: https://lnkd.in/gKm5UUvp
2. Mercy Corps is mobilizing a team first to Poland and then, depending on safety and access, into Ukraine: https://www.mercycorps.org
3. Nova Ukraine is distributing food and essential supplies to local communities and hospitals. https://novaukraine.org/