Declaring that "the children of the world need books, not guns," United Nations Messenger of Peace and Oscar-winning actor Michael Douglas today launched a new UN stamp that promotes disarmament.
Designed by artist Michel Granger of France, the stamp highlights the theme that children should be in school instead of facing wars or gun-related violence.
The UN Postal Administration (UNPA) and the Department of Disarmament Affairs worked together to develop the stamp, which costs 37 cents and is available for purchase.
In a video message to mark the stamp's launch in New York, Mr. Douglas said "the proliferation of light weapons has cheated children of the chance to go to school, to play in the fields and to be raised within a secure environment protected by elders. It has allowed children to be used as instruments of war."
He added that "the individual and social investment in weapons - that find their way into the hands of children - must be redirected. The children of the world need books, not guns, education, not war."
The disarmament stamp is Mr. Granger's third design for UNPA; he has also designed stamps about the issue of chemical weapons (1991) and road safety concerns (2004).
Yesterday UNPA also launched eight commemorative stamps on the theme of Human Rights (Education Decade 1995-2004). Yuri Gevorgian of Armenia designed the stamps for this series.