The Documentary Project aims to capture the stories of various ambassadors and high commissioners who are committed to promoting peace and justice around the world. Through in-depth interviews and conversations, the project seeks to understand how these individuals are contributing to a more peaceful and equitable world, and what challenges they have faced along the way. By highlighting their perspectives and experiences, the project hopes to inspire viewers to think about how they too can contribute to creating a more peaceful and just world. Ultimately, the Documentary Project aims to spread a message of hope and optimism, showing that even in the face of adversity, individuals can make a difference and promote positive change in the world.
As part of my documentary project on peace, diversity, and inclusion, I had the privilege of interviewing several ambassadors and high commissioners in New Zealand. One of my first interviews was with Hon Phil Twyford, Minister for Disarmament and Arms Control, Minister of State for Trade and Export Growth, and Associate Minister for the Environment, and Immigration. We had a great conversation at the New Zealand Parliament about the government’s efforts to promote peace and combat climate change.
Another interview was with H.E. Miguel Bauza More, Ambassador of Spain in Wellington. Despite only having arrived in New Zealand six months ago, the ambassador surprised me with his thoughtful answers during the interview. I wished him a pleasant stay in New Zealand and hoped to meet him again in Dunedin.
I also had the pleasure of meeting H.E. Sudesh Maniar, the High Commissioner of Singapore. As a country that represents diversity and inclusion, Singapore was an important interview for my project. I was impressed by the Singapore High Commission, which was grand and impressive.
At the Embassy of Switzerland in Wellington, I interviewed Deputy Head of Mission, Mrs Sandra Chawla-Gantenbein, about Switzerland’s commitment to promoting peace and its alignment with the UN’s goals and values. She also kindly gave me several gifts and souvenirs from the embassy.
I had the opportunity to discuss policy and procedures related to peace, diversity, and inclusion with H.E. Mrs Omur Unsay, Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey. She was a sweet and kind ambassador, and it was a great pleasure to meet her.
Meeting H.E. Rashed Alqemzi, the Ambassador of the United Arab Emirates in Wellington, was initially nerve-wracking for me. However, his warm welcome and the coffee he offered helped calm my anxiety. We had a great conversation about peace and the UAE’s role in promoting it.
In addition to meeting with ambassadors and high commissioners, I also had the chance to chat with Tonga Karena and Pund Wano-Bryant about Parihaka. We discussed the peaceful resistance of the western Taranaki settlement against the confiscation of Māori land and the subsequent invasion by 1600 troops.
During my interview with H.E. Jesus S. Domingo, Philippine Ambassador to New Zealand, Cook Islands, Fiji, Niue, Samoa & Tonga, we discussed peace and the best way of achieving it. He was an energetic and enthusiastic ambassador who I greatly enjoyed speaking with. I was also excited to read his book on the topic.
Finally, I met with HE Ms Nur Izzah Wong Mee Choo, High Commissioner of Malaysia, for a three-hour conversation about peace and diversity. She was incredibly kind and shared her expertise and information on the topic, leaving me feeling positive about moving forward with my project. During the interview, she shared her perspective on what the most important thing to teach young people today is, which was quite different from my expectations.
I also had the pleasure of meeting Her Excellency Mrs Nina Obermaier, the Ambassador of the European Union to New Zealand. She was a remarkable woman with great leadership skills and unique perspectives on promoting peace. During our conversation, she stressed the importance of understanding the different shades of gray in complex issues.