New Issues: UNPA release celebrates sport’s contribution to peace

Today, the United Nations Postal Administration (UNPA) issued a dozen stamps celebrating the theme of “Sport for Peace”.

Today’s issue date was chosen because it coincides with the final week before the beginning of this year’s Olympic Truce, which begins July 29, one week before the Aug. 5 opening ceremony of this year’s Summer Olympic Games in Rio; it remains in effect until one week after the close of the Paralympics on Sept. 18.

The stamps

The stamps (two of 12 shown above) were printed in panes of six (three se-tenant pairs) and depict various athletes and Olympic scenes.

The 12-stamp Sport for Peace set includes two se-tenant pairs for each of the three UNPA post offices, including UN headquarters in New York City; the Vienna International Centre in Vienna, Austria; and the Palais des Nations in Geneva. Designed by Sergio Baradat and Lindsey Thoeng based on illustrations by U.S. artist Nick Iluzarda, whose clients include ESPN and Runner’s World magazine, the stamp depict various athletes and Olympic scenes. The pair of 47-cent New York stamps depicts a shot putter, high jumper, runner and javelin thrower. Another pair of $1.15 stamps features the Olympic flame and a peace dove alongside an olive branch, and the one- and two-franc Geneva stamps depict rowing and rhythmic gymnastics, respectively. Lastly, across the pair of 0.68 stamps is a weightlifter, and two fencers are shown across the 1.70 stamps.

Printed in panes of six stamps – three se-tenant pairs – using offset lithography by Cartor Security Printer, each stamp measures 50 mm by 35 mm (the panes measure 178 mm by 127 mm). The selvage on each pane’s left side includes the UN emblem as well as blue rings representing the IOC below; between these images are the words “Sport for Peace” and the following four inscriptions:

  • Sport is a universal language and powerful tool for peace. It is based on universal values such as fair play, teamwork, tolerance and equality.
  • It brings people together for friendship, solidarity and, above all, peace.
  • The United Nations and the International Olympic Committee have long enjoyed strong ties by cooperating on several initiatives which use sport to build a more peaceful and better world.
  • In this spirit, the two organizations work together to promote the Olympic Truce in the global call to cease all hostilities worldwide during the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

The inscription on the New York pane is in English while the Geneva pane is in French and the Vienna pane is in German.

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