On 21th July 2018, two hundred forty four years since the conclusion of the Kaynardzha Peace Treaty in 1774, , Kaynardzha took place the 1st edition of Kaynardzha Peace Festival carried out in the “Historical Fountain” Park under the theme “In music, speech, painting – the peace shines brightly“.  More than 200 people participated in this Festival, 150 of whom were children and young people.

This festival was organized by  Kaynardzha Municipality and is one as one of the many events dedicated to the Peace Treaty of 1774. Since 2015, Kaynardzha has been a member of the European Network of Places of Peace (ENPP) which includes municipalities, NGOs and citizens from across Europe living in peace – the places where wars are ended and peace agreements or contracts signed.

At its last European Meeting, held in the city of Bucharest, Romania (where 4 Peace Treaties have been concluded), the European Network of Places of Peace  set to work more actively with children and youth to reach the following goals:

  1. Work to promote and enrich the culture of community peace, including the development of a local organization, to remember and respect the good work done for peace;
  2. Work with children and young people at any convenient time for the cause of peace, to explore and exchange experiences among the peoples of Europe;
  3. Draw attention to important historical moments such as the moments of concluding a peace treaty;
  4. To develop the cultural exchange and tourism of the local communities;
  5. To restore and develop the infrastructure of the historical places where a peace treaty is concluded, thus contributing to preserving Europe’s cultural heritage.

The event was solemnly opened with the anthem of the Republic of Bulgaria and a welcome speech by Mrs. Valentina Tokusheva, Deputy Mayor of Kaynardzha Municipality. Special guests at the festival were the regional governor of Silistra – Mr. Ivelin Stattev and Mr. Yordan Yordanov – municipal councilor.

From the official stand, Mr. Stattev welcomed the children for their participation and made clear that peace is the most sacred and necessary thing to preserve that we must watch daily and hourly.

The director of the festival read a salutation addressed  by Eduard Basso, President of the European Network of Peace Network, with which he strongly supports the first Kaynardzha Peace Festival and encourages his continuation in the coming years, supports the work with children and youth in order to promote  the culture of peace among the community.

The curator of the tourist visitor center at the place of peace – Mrs. Dafinka Staneva, told the children curious facts about the history of the 1774 peace treaty and also wished them a cheerful participation in the Peace Festival.

The festival program also included sessions of poetry, music and dance, a lively and very participated regional cuisine contest of the region of Dobrudja and an exhibition of drawings made by children from schools in the region under the theme of Peace.

The municipality of Kaynardzha, a member of the ENPP, organizes on July 21 when the 244 Years of the Peace Treaty of Kaynardzha are celebrated, a Peace Festival dedicated to the theme “In music and words – Make Peace Shine“.

The Treaty of Kaynardzha signed between the Russian Empire and the Ottoman Empire is the precursor of the Liberation Movement of Bulgaria that led to the Independence of this Country after 5 centuries of Ottoman occupation and therefore has a huge significance for the History of the Bulgarian People.

The Peace Festival is held at Kaynardzha Historical Fountain Park from 9 am and its program includes traditional music and dance performances, poetry sessions dedicated to peace and prosperity, exhibition of drawings by children of the schools of the Kaynardzha Municipality, Workshops for Peace with peace messages, games and cycling races for young people and children and an exhibition of traditional cakes and pies from the Dobrudzja region preceded by a competition between municipalities and a competition for the participants individuals.

Following a tradition from 2000, the Evoramonte Castle Friendship Association(LACE) promotes next Saturday, May 26, the Commemorations of the 184 Years of the Signature of the Convention of Évora Monte.

The program includes a public session with interventions alluding to the anniversary of the Convention which will have the musical participation of a trio of Master’s students from the Department of Music of the Évora University School of Arts composed by Thallyana Barbosa (Flute), Alphonsos Silveira (Clarinet ) and Andre Matuk (Guitar) who will play pieces by several Brazilian authors. The Session will be held at 11 am at the Tower/Palace of Evoramonte.

In the afternoon, by 4 pm, at the Church of Santa Maria (Castle), the same trio of students from the University of Évora will present a concert of flute, clarinet and guitar composed of 8 musical works from Villa Lobos, Osvaldo Lacerda, Vassiliev, Stravinsky and Astor Piazzolla, among others.

The Program of these Commemorations is supported by the Civil Parish of Évora Monte, Music Department of the Évora University Arts School, Delegation of Culture of Alentejo Region, Évora Monte Parish and the European Network of Places of Peace.

All events in the Commemorative program have free admission.

“Dark Sky Alqueva”(Portugal), the tourism project headed by Apolónia Rodrigues (also Coordinator of Places of Peace Route) was nominated for the World Travel Awards, known as the Oscars of Tourism, in the category of Europe’s Leading Tourist Attraction 2018, together with attractions such as the Eiffel Tower, the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona or the Coliseum in Rome.
ENPP congratulates the entire Dark Sky Alqueva team, especially Apolónia Rodrigues, whose contribution to the development of the ENPP and the Places of Peace Route has been decisive and calls on all his friends to vote for Dark Sky Alqueva.The voting takes place until 20 May 2018 and can be done (it’s only one or two minutes) through the links:

URL: http://www.worldtravelawards.com/vote-for-dark-sky-alqueva-…

SHORT URL: http://bit.ly/2DEwqwx

More information about Dark Sky Alqueva in: www.darkskyalqueva.com

In Trencin (Slovakia) there is one of the many cemeteries of the 1st. World War, where buried fighters of various nationalities and unknown soldiers.
The situation of evident degradation of this cemetery and its memorials, not conducive with the respect due to those who perished during that World War nor with those who make it a place of memory for the preservation of Peace in Europe, caught the attention of the non-profit association Trencin – European Town (OZ TREUM), led by Janka Fabová, member of the Board of ENPP, and other institutions of the city.
Since 2014, by the action of OZ TREUM, the cemetery has been renovated and recovering an aspect worthy of the memory it carries. This action ended this year, leaving the cemetery with the treated aspect that the photograph attests.
In this cemetery are buried 773 soldiers of many nationalities who have died as a result of war injuries or epidemics, mostly Czech, Slovak, Romanian and Hungarian but also of other nationalities: Russians, Italians, Turks, Poles, Austrians and Germans.
In 2018, 100 Years of the end of 1st World War are celebrated and next summer this cemetery will be the scene of a military ceremony alluding to this Commemoration.

The “Zadar Islands” Elementary School, in cooperation with the Monastery of St. Francis in Zadar and the Municipality of Zadar, symbolically commemorated today the 660th Anniversary of the conclusion of the Zadar Peace, an important historical event that took place just in the sacristy of the Church of St. Francis on February 18, 1358. The Zadar Peace, signed between the Venetian Republic and the Kingdom of Croatia, brought Zadar and the entire Croatian coast and islands the liberation from the Venetian government and marked the social and economic turning point in these areas.

Fr. Stanko Škunca, on behalf of the Monastery of St. Francis briefly acquainted the students with Zadar’s peace and the role of the Franciscans at his signing and invited them to visit the monastery treasury and see the place where Zadar peace was signed. Vladimir Alavanja, a retired curator of the National Museum in Zadar, spoke about the historical and overall social and economic significance of this event, and the director of “Zadar Islands” Elementary School  stressed the importance of this project for children, for the school and for the city at all.

On behalf of the City of Zadar and the European Network of Places of Peace (ENPP) Anita Gržan Martinović, Head of the Department for International Cooperation of Zadar Municipality and Member of the Board of ENPP, praised the work carried out by the “Zadar Islands” Elementary School, its Director Davora Barića, the Coordinator  Anamarija Botica and its numerous collaborators for six consecutive years in the implementation of the project „Museum at school – heritage and culture of peace„ which aimed the promotion of a culture of peace together with the young students. Anita Gržan Martinović also highlighted the fact  this project has found a path to the City of Zadar and the European Network of Places of Peace, particularly because this school program of Commemoration of  Zadar Peace has been incorporated into the programs that the City of Zadar promotes under the aegis of this European association, which brings together places and cities in which the signatures of the end of wars and armed conflicts have been signed, promotes the idea of ​​peace as a common precondition for life and progress, organizes scientific and professional conferences and workshops where, with an interdisciplinary approach, speaks of this topic to all generations and encourages them to be promoters of peace and tolerance in their communitie and in addition, launches joint projects for the promotion of cultural tourism.

Anita Gržan Martinović recalled that in 2012, the City of Zadar hosted the 6th Meeting of the European Network of Places of Peace  and was included in “Places of Peace Routes” project, which is expected to be certified as “Cultural Route of the Council of Europe” next April.

On 14 January 2018, there has been a book presentation in the House of Peace in Vasvár in which several publications were showed to the public, among them the proceedings of the last international conference on the battle of Saint-Gotthard and the peace treaty of Vasvár organized in 2014 both in Szentgotthárd and Vasvár. This new book gathers studies of many relevant specialists of military history (for ex.: István Czigány, Özgür Kolçak, Jean Bérenger) and diplomatic history (for ex.: Jean-Pierre Bois, Ágnes R. Várkonyi). Some studies of the books are dedicated to the most important historical personalities like Raimondo Montecuccoli, Miklós Zrínyi or Jean de Coligny and others represent the everyday life of soldiers. The texts are published in three languages (Hungarian, French and English) with abstracts. Many illustrations, maps help the readers in the better understanding of these historical events. This nice book issued of the cooperation between the Hungarian Academy of Sciences and the cities of Szentgotthárd and Vasvár is last scientific synthesis on the peace treaty of Vasvár.

The Association for the Promotion of Altranstädt Castle (Germany), as a member of the European Network of Places of Peace, commemorated the Poppy Day and at 11am last November 11 some members of the association met at the memorial of the fallen soldiers of the First World War and put down a container decorated with white carnations and of course red poppies following a tradition maintained for several years.
Poppy Day began to be commemorated in Great Britain in honor of fallen and missing soldiers of the First World War, on each 11th November, but it extended many decades ago to all the countries of North and Central Europe, the countries most plagued by the scourge of the First World War.

Youth Forum Romania, member of ENPP and headed by Ms. Lidia Stoichici, met last week in Bucharest with Ms. Steliana Cojocariu, counselor of the Ministry of Tourism of Romania. The meeting analyzed the current state of development of our Network and Places of Peace Route in that country and in Europe, with special emphasis on the current application of the Route for Cultural Route of the Council of Europe. The commemoration of the 100 Years of the Treaty of Bucharest 1918 and some initiatives that the Route plans to carry out next year – named as European Year of Cultural Heritage by the European Commission – were other subjects discussed at that meeting that deserved the interest of the Romanian Ministry of Tourism .

On November 7, the President of ENPP, Eduardo Basso, met with the Mayor of the village of Alcañices (Spain), Mr. Jesus Más in order to develop the work of ENPP and Places of Peace Route in this spanish village where was signed the famous “Treaty of Alcañices” between the King Denis of Portugal and King Fernando IV of Castile on September 12, 1297. This Peace Treaty ended a cross-border war begun two years earlier and defined the modern border between the two Iberian countries.
The town of Alcañices keeps alive the memory of this Treaty of Peace with annual celebrations on the date of its signature and which had as high point the year of 1997, the year of its 7th Centenary, with the presence in the town of the King of Spain, D Juan Carlos and the President of the Portuguese Republic, Dr. Jorge Sampaio. The built heritage is in a very reasonable state of conservation, namely the place where the Treaty was signed, in which the Tourist Office and the Municipal Library operate. In the same place an auditorium with capacity for 400 people is being built.
The President of ENPP and the Mayor of Alcañices stressed the importance of the village membership in ENPP and established a plan of future actions to be undertaken within the framework of Places of Peace Route.