International Day of Peace Run 2023: Uniting Cypriots through Bicommunal Running Event in Nicosia

September 28, 2023


Nicosia, 23rd September 2023 - With funding from the European Union, the International Day of Peace Run 2023 was organized by UNDP, in coordination with OSASG-Cyprus, under the auspices of The Technical Committee on Culture, with the bicommunal running group Runite. Bringing the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities together, around 200 people ran an 8km course through the historic streets of Nicosia.

The International Day of Peace Run 2023 was synchronised with the UN International Day of Peace observed on the 21st of September. The UN General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, through observing 24 hours of non-violence and cease-fire.

The runners, set off through the streets of Nicosia to demonstrate their shared commitment to global peace. Starting from the Ledra Palace Hotel, participants ran through the heart of Nicosia, passing by renowned landmarks such as Eleftheria Square, Ledra Street, Buyuk Han, and Ledra Palace. The finish line, located back at Ledra Palace Hotel, provided a celebratory atmosphere where Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot runners could connect with fellow participants. Each participant received a commemorative T-shirt and finishing medal as tokens of their participation and contribution to promoting peace and understanding through sports.

Mr. Stefan Simosas, Head of Cooperation of the Cyprus Settlement Support Unit of the European Commission highlighted that "marking the International Day of Peace in Cyprus with a sports event is an opportunity to recognize the positive role that sports play in nurturing tolerance and trust. The European Union is committed to support and promote such events that build confidence and respect between the two Cypriot communities."

"The International Day of Peace Run exemplifies the power of collaboration and the potential of sport to transcend boundaries, and bring the people of Cyprus together " said the Head of UNDP Cyprus, Mr Jakhongir Khaydarov. "Through this bicommunal event, we are not only promoting physical well-being but also sending a strong message of solidarity and global peace contributing to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)."

This year’s theme is Actions for Peace: Our Ambition for the #GlobalGoals. It is a call to action that recognizes our individual and collective responsibility to foster peace. Fostering peace contributes to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals will create a culture of peace for all. The SDGs aim to bring us closer to having more peaceful, just, and inclusive societies, free from fear and violence.
The International Day of Peace Run 2023 stood as a testament to the belief that shared activities can break down barriers and contribute to building a more peaceful world.

For further information and media enquiries please contact UNDP at: 

Gulten Inan, Communications Assistant 
Tel: +357 99 061560/+905488684603 

Eleni Panayiotou, Communications Associate 
Tel: +35799368879/+905488684602

European Union
The Aid Programme for the Turkish Cypriot community, based on Council Regulation 389/2006, aims at facilitating the reunification of Cyprus by encouraging the economic development of the Turkish Cypriot community, with particular emphasis on the economic integration of the island, on improving contacts between the two communities and with the EU, and on preparation for the EU body of laws (also referred to as acquis communautaire).

For more information please visit: Aid Programme for the Turkish Cypriot community (
EU Infopoint on Facebook - -

United Nations Development Programme
UNDP aims to contribute and support the peace-building process in Cyprus and to enhance cooperation between the Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriot by implementing a range of confidence building measures.

Get in touch: UNDP Cyprus (@UNDPCY) / Twitter | on Facebook | on Instagram
More resources: