Surprisingly UNWTO Says | ‘NO’ to Peace Through Tourism

It took just one short email for World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvil’s Azerbaijani Chief of staff to destroy three years of hard work and expectation by Louis D’Amore, known as the man behind Peace through Tourism.

The email by the UNWTO Chief of Staff simply said: “UNWTO decided to no longer have a part in the IIPT – UNWTO summit planned for August in Montreal, Canada.”

D’Amore is the founder and president of the International Institute for Peace Through Tourism (IIPT). IIPT is recognized and highly respected worldwide.

It took this short email in March to step on the role, legacy, and work of former UNWTO Secretary General Dr. TalebRifai. Rifai was an outspoken supporter of Louis D’Amore and peace through tourism.  Rifai joined IIPT as the head of their advisory committee.

UNWTO Secretary-General ZurabPololikashvil personally did not contact Louis D’Amore or was available for a discussion.

There was no further explanation given. Dr. Rifai made sure when he left UNWTO the cooperation with IIPT was on solid ground. A former executive director trusted to work with IIPT on the Summit was terminated from UNWTO on December 31, 2017.

“IIPT was advised in early 2018 that UNWTO would continue to be involved in the Summit as originally planned.  However, we learned in mid-March that UNWTO would not be involved. Subsequently, the major source of funding anticipated for the Summit did not materialize. We, therefore, unfortunately, have to cancel the summit.

We sincerely regret any inconvenience this may cause.

IIPT was very much looking forward to its 30th-anniversary‘ family reunion’ – and our best conference since Vancouver 1988  that first introduced the concept of Sustainable Tourism and launched the “Peace through Tourism Movement” with 800 delegates from 68 countries whose feedback stated, “it was the best conference they had ever attended.”

We look forward to our continued collaboration and our commitment to making travel and tourism “the world’s first global peace industry” and the belief that every traveler is potentially an ambassador for peace.”                       

Peace through Tourism is the brand developed after Louis D’Amore concluded the world’s first comprehensive study on the future of tourism in 1976.  Louis D’Amore is known as the man of peace.

Last year the International Institute for Peace Through Tourism (IIPT) under the leadership of its founder and president LousD’Amore announced: “IIPT is proud to be returning to Montreal, where IIPT was born in 1986 during the UN International Year of Peace, with a vision of travel and tourism becoming the world’s first “Global Peace Industry” and the belief that every traveler is potentially an “Ambassador for Peace.”

Mr. D’Amore has been a pioneer in promoting a social and environmental ethic within the travel and tourism industry since the mid-70. IIPT Founder and President, Louis D’Amore used the occasion of the UNWTO Conference in Jamaica in November to announce the new dates for the Global Summit named:  Sustainable Tourism for Development and Peace. The summit was to be co-organized by the UN World Tourism Organization and the International Institute for Peace through Tourism (IIPT).

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