Baptist World Alliance
Eron Henry, Associate Director of Communications
Neville Callam, General Secretary
Phone: +1 703 790 8980
Fax: +1 703 893 5160      

July 14, 2011

For Immediate Release

BWA endorses 10-point peace plan

Washington, DC (BWA)--The Baptist World Alliance is encouraging its member conventions and unions, churches and Baptist individuals to learn the "ten practices of 'just peacemaking'" and "to incorporate them ... in our congregations and institutions."


In a resolution passed during its Annual Gathering in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, July 4-9, the BWA also urged governments to pursue the ten practices "in their leadership, policies and actions."


The "just peacemaking" formula was developed by scholars led by Glen Stassen, a Baptist and professor of Christian Ethics at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California, in the United States. The peace plan includes support for nonviolent action; cooperative conflict resolution; the promotion of human rights, religious liberty and democracy; economic development that is just and sustainable; a reduction in offensive weapons and weapons trade; the support of grassroots peacemaking groups and voluntary associations; and the strengthening of the United Nations and other international organizations.


The BWA recalled Jesus' cry over Jerusalem in Luke 19:42, when he bewailed ignorance of "those things that make for peace." We, the BWA said, "envision Jesus weeping over many cities and nations of our world because we do not know those things that make for peace."


In a separate resolution, the BWA endorsed the peace agreement signed by three Naga factions in the Northeast Indian state of Nagaland in 2009.


 "We give thanks to God for the remarkable efforts of the Forum for Naga Reconciliation under the leadership of Wati Aier to bring peace to the Naga people," the resolution states. "We commend those parties who signed the 2009 Covenant of Reconciliation and urge them to fulfill its promise."


The 2009 covenant was further endorsed at a "high level" meeting of Naga leaders on September 18, 2010.


For decades, several Naga groups have been in conflict with each other and with the Indian government over issues of autonomy and sovereignty for Nagaland state and the Naga people. Between 1992 and 2009, more than 2,330 insurgency related fatalities have been recorded in Nagaland.


At the meetings in Kuala Lumpur, Aier was presented with the BWA Denton and Janice Lotz Human Rights Award for his role in brokering peace among the Nagas, a group that is predominantly Christian with a large Baptist population.