UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon will carry the Olympic Torch on the final leg of its journey through the United Kingdom, ahead of the opening ceremony of the 2012 London summer games on Friday.
“This is an honor for the Secretary General, the UN Secretary General’s spokesman told reporters at the UN on Tuesday. “He is a firm believer in sports for development and sports for peace.”
The torch, an olympic tradition dating back to ancient Greece, was reintroduced at the 1928 Summer Olympics in Amsterdam and has since remained an important international symbol for cooperation and peace.
“He [Ban] will also be discussing the whole concept of the truce and it also gives him an opportunity to touch base with world leaders who will be there for the opening ceremony,” his spokesman added. “All in all, it’s a very productive time for him to be there.”
The Olympic Truce, an ancient Greek tradition, is a call for a worldwide laying down of arms during the Olympic Games. The UN passed a resolution in 1993, urging its member States to observe the Olympic Truce from the seventh day before the opening to the seventh day following the closing of each Olympic Games.
The Secretary General is scheduled to visit London from July 26-28 and will return to New York on Saturday.