It is the
custom of the Ancient Greek Olympics, 776 BC to about 373 AD, for
all warring parties to cease hostilities during the Olympics.
For seven days before and seven days after the period of the
Olympics, no fighting was allowed. An international truce among the
Greeks was declared to allow the athletes to reach Olympia to
compete and return home safely.
103rd Modern Olympiad in Beijing in August 2008, I am openly
appealing to all warring parties in Sri Lanka to declare a
unilateral cessation of hostilities for two months during
July 15 to September 15, 2008, just before, during and after the
Olympic Period for Peace will renew the tradition, hopefully,
throughout the world. It will give a respite for the suffering
peoples. The parties to the conflict and the general population can
use the peace-space and time of the Olympic Period for Peace
to reflect and engage in dialogue exploring non-violent paths to
cessation of hostilities by parties in Sri Lanka would give an
impetus to other nations at war within or between each other to
consider such a cessation of hostilities during the period of the
Olympic games. The benefits from such a noble action, even if
only one party to the conflict responds positively, it will
encourage the other party to reciprocate. Such magnanimous
actions will create and light the path for peace which would save
many lives and suffering.
I appeal to
past Olympians and all sportspersons from all communities, and
national and international sports institutions such as, Sri Lanka
Athletic Association, Sri Lanka Cricket, ICC, FIFA, IAAF, National
Olympic Committees, and International Olympic Committee to make
similar appeals to support the Olympic Period for Peace.
Olympian, Helsinki 1952 and Melbourne 1956 Olympic Games.
Gold Medalist, Asian Games, Tokyo, 1958.