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Distinguished Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon, Your Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen, dear friends, I want to express my utmost respect to the UPF and its members for their strivings to organize this year's World Summit and their continuing mission to build lasting peace, not only on the Korean Peninsula but worldwide.

The paramount role in an ongoing search for peace belongs to the UPF's founder and host of the Summit, Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon. Dr. Moon's energy, leadership, understanding of the importance of peace, and dedication in the mission to advocate values of peace worldwide oblige us, even more, to follow her steps and work together with her team on this challenging goal.

I also would like to use this opportunity to express my deep appreciation to Prime Minister Samdech Hun Sen of the Kingdom of Cambodia and the former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon, the co-chairs of the World Summit.

The task of organizing the Summit successfully in times of uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic was challenging and faced lots of burdens. But your wisdom, experience, and expertise were a guarantee to all participants that they will have a great platform to express views on the topics of this year's Summit, focusing on the situation on the Korean Peninsula and beyond.

The world without peace is a world of destruction, wars, killings, hate, poverty, uncertainty. A world without peace is a world without its soul. Peace is the first and foremost value to preserve if we, as a global society, want to live in democracy, prosperity, love, happiness, understanding, pluralism, respect.

Montenegro, a country situated in the Western Balkans, is proud of its history. But that history was not always peaceful. During the 20th century alone Montenegro went through five wars.

The last one, which occurred during the collapse of the former Yugoslavia, caused significant losses. We lost over 100,000 citizens; hundreds of thousands were displaced from their homes; lots of families suffered.

Those who have not felt the devastating effects of war and destruction cannot understand the importance of peace, dialogue, and resolving disputes in a peaceful manner.

Unfortunately, Montenegro and the Balkans had to learn from such painful lessons. In this regard, I highly appreciate the numerous activities organized by UPF Europe and the Middle East, aiming to build a platform to discuss the perspectives and challenges the Balkans are facing in maintaining lasting peace and understanding between peoples and nations of the Balkans.

In one of those discussions, we exchanged our experiences with our friends from the Korean Peninsula. We agreed that, regardless of our political, cultural, geographical, and other differences, we have at least one aim that is the same – our societies to reconcile and build lasting peace.

With the actions from the UPF and other stakeholders, I am sure that we are one step closer to achieving this goal. The best way to accomplish this goal is through continuous dialogue, through which we can understand more each other's way of thinking, culture, challenges, politics, and goals. If we fulfill this goal, we can deepen our cooperation in economy, trade, technology, green energy, fight against diseases and natural disasters, and in many more fields, regardless of how far geographically we are.

Only through such relations can we build a sustainable future for our future generations. This has to be our first and the most important obligation, and failing is not an option.

Finally, expressing my highest considerations and respect, I wish all the organizers and participants of the Summit successful and productive work.

Thank you for your attention.

H.E. Filip Vujanovic, President of Montenegro (2003-2018)

H.E. Filip Vujanovic, President of Montenegro (2003-2018)

H.E. Filip Vujanović served as the President of the Republic of Montenegro from 2003 – 2018. He served as the country's first President since its independence from Serbia in June 2006.

During his political acreer he served as Minister of Justice in from 1993 to 1996, and then Interior Minister from 1996 to 1998. From February 1998 until November 2002 he served as the Prime Minister of Montenegro. From November 2002 - May 2003, he served as the Speaker of the Montenegrin Parliament.

During his presidency, on 14 December 2006, he signed the Framework Document for the accession to the Partnership for Peace Programme, wherewith Montenegro became a member of the NATO program "Partnership for Peace".

Since May 1985, he has been married to Svetlana, a court judge, with whom he has three children: two daughters (Tatjana and Nina), and a son (Danilo).

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