Dr. Anwar bin Mohammed Gargash, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, took part in the 17th edition of the Oslo Forum in Norway.
The Forum brought together mediation practitioners and experts for two days of informal discussions to reflect on current peacemaking trends and challenges.
Gargash’s participation came in response to an invitation from the Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ine Marie Eriksen Soreide. The event was hosted by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue, an independent non-governmental organisation founded in 1999, which assists in mediating among conflicting parties to prevent or end armed conflicts.
On the sidelines of the forum, Gargash held a bilateral meeting with the Norwegian Foreign Minister, in the presence of the UAE Ambassador to Norway, Abdullah Al Rumaithi, and a number of officials from the Norwegian Foreign Ministry.
During the meeting, they discussed ways to develop bilateral relations and reviewed and the latest developments on the international scene.
Dr Gargash also met Annika SAlder, State Secretary to the Swedish Minister for Foreign Affairs, and discussed the latest regional and international developments.
Distinguished participants included the African Union Commissioner for Peace and Security, and the Executive Director of the World Food Programme in addition to high-level representatives from Ethiopia, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Mali, Sweden and Uzbekistan, as well as the Special Representatives and Special Envoys of the United Nations Secretary-General for Libya, Myanmar, Syria and the African Union.
The overarching theme of the 2019 Forum was ‘Rebooting mediation: connecting tracks, processes and people’. Taking into account the growing fragmentation of conflict parties, the event provided an opportunity to reflect on how mediators can better connect different peacemaking tracks to ensure coherence among them. Participants explored how bottom-up initiatives can contribute to elite negotiations, and how peace processes can efficiently accommodate multiple armed groups. They discussed how to include the voice of civil society, and of women and young people in particular, in high-level processes.
The Forum featured a mixture of plenary sessions, roundtables, situation reports, lectures and informal lunchtime conversations. Thematic sessions delved into a variety of peacemaking issues including the role of mediation in the midst of political crises, the relationship between constitution-drafting and peace processes, whether mediation can help address tensions in cyberspace, and what can be learned from the breakdown of talks. Participants reflected on recent developments in Myanmar, Libya, the Sahel, Syria, Yemen and other hotspots.
Source: UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs