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Soka Gakkai Calls for Immediate Cessation of Hostilities, Donates to Aid Ukrainian Refugees

Thierry monasse / Getty Images.

March 7, Tokyo—Soka Gakkai President Minoru Harada opened his speech at the March 6, 2022, Soka Gakkai Headquarters Leaders Meeting, expressing deep concern over the ongoing fighting that threatens the lives of those in Ukraine. He affirmed that, as Buddhists who uphold belief in the dignity of all life, we are earnestly praying each day for the safety of all involved and the quickest end to this conflict.

Over 1 million refugees have reportedly fled Ukraine in the first week of fighting—an unprecedented exodus. And this number continues to rise. To offer humanitarian aid to those being displaced, President Harada reported that the Soka Gakkai has decided to donate funds to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.  

In addition, Soka Gakkai Youth Leader Akiyasu Shiga issued the following statement, which was published in the March 2 issue of the Soka Gakkai’s daily newspaper, Seikyo Shimbun:

I am troubled by the intensifying fighting that is taking a devastating toll on the people of Ukraine. With this conflict threatening the livelihood and dignity of many people, we, the Soka Gakkai youth division, are calling for an immediate cessation of hostilities. 

With concerns mounting throughout the international community, the United Nations Security Council convened an Emergency Special Session of the United Nations General Assembly for the first time in 40 years. United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres said, “This escalating violence—which is resulting in civilian deaths, including children—is totally unacceptable.”[1]

We call on all concerned countries to unite in making exhaustive diplomatic efforts to prevent further tragedy. Above all, we cannot turn a blind eye to the escalating tension and perceivable threat of the use of nuclear weapons. 

We must continue to engage more than ever in dialogue and diplomacy toward restoring peace. We are praying for the safety of those impacted by the horrors of war and for the quickest possible end to the conflict. And we urge an immediate end to the attacks. 

—Prepared by the World Tribune staff

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