A 14-year-old boy from Beirut, Mustapha Tawoukji, was presented with a $500 check and a plaque at the United Nations Monday as winner of an international peace poster contest.
The competition, organized by Lions Clubs International, was on the theme "Peace Will Help Us Grow." It drew entries from more than 100,000 children in 49 countries.Mustapha's winning poster depicts a white dove flying over a rose.
The presentation was made by a senior U.N. official, John Washburn, in the absence abroad of Secretary General Javier Perez de Cuellar.
The ceremony took place during a daylong meeting of Lions Clubs members at U.N. headquarters.
Mustapha, a student at the Makased School Alhorj for Boys, was accompanied by his mother Zeinab and a sister, Nada.
He received a standing ovation when he was introduced by Lions Club International President Austin P. Jennings, who said the organization's first peace poster contest had been won by someone who had "never known peace during his lifetime."
Asked where he got the idea for his winning entry, Mustapha told reporters through an interpreter: "The dove represents peace and the rose represents growth." He said his favorite themes were from nature.
While in New York, he said, "I would like to visit the Statue of Liberty and . . . the museums as well. I will also take souvenir photos. I would like to see the skyscrapers, including the Empire State Building."