2003 Event


Peace Bell Ceremony

19 September 2003

As it has every year since it was donated by the people of Japan in 1954, the Peace Bell was rung in a ceremony marking the International Day of Peace held at the United Nations Headquarters in New York on 19 September 2003.

Secretary-General Kofi Annan rang the bell in a ceremony that also included President of the Fifty-eighth Session of the General Assembly Julian R. Hunte, Permanent Representative of Japan to the United Nations Ambassador Koichi Haraguchi, five UN Ambassadors of Peace and other dignitaries.

Cast from coins donated by the schoolchildren of over sixty nations by a Japanese artisan, the Peace Bell was presented to the world by the people of Japan as a prayer for world peace. As the Prime Minister of Japan, Junichiro Koizumi, noted in his address to the General Assembly in September 2002, "the beautiful sound of the bell . . . reminds us of what the United Nations represents".