Helsinki, Finland—UPF held a Peace Road event at the island fortress of Suomenlinna, located at the entrance to Helsinki's harbor.

The event, on September 16, 2023, commemorated the UN International Day of Peace.

The fortress was built in the latter half of the 18th century, while Finland was under Swedish rule. Connecting six islands, it is an intriguing example of European military architecture, and therefore in 1991 UNESCO named it a World Heritage Site.

A Lutheran priest from the small Suomenlinna church said a prayer for peace for the almost 30 Peace Road participants. The Suomenlinna church, interestingly, also serves as a lighthouse and is one of the most popular churches for weddings in Helsinki.

Following the prayer for peace, the participants walked along the Blue Route which runs across the fortress for some 1.5 kilometers (nearly 1 mile) from north to south, past all the main sights.

At the Suomenlinna Museum, three representatives from our unique international group offered goodwill messages, and at the high peak of Piper Park—Helsinki’s most spectacular place to view the sea and its archipelago—we conducted a bridge of friendship ceremony.

We concluded the Peace Road event with refreshments at the final station, King’s Gate, which is adorned with 250-year-old carved memorial plaques conveying political, strategic and moral guiding principles for life.

While contributing to the UN International Day of Peace on September 21, this Peace Road event was also a great opportunity for the participants to create or deepen bonds of friendship with each other.

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