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International conference on mediation held in Istanbul

20:45 | 03.07.2017 Category: International

Ankara, 03 July /MOLDPRES/ – The fourth edition of the mediation conference, entitled "Surge in Diplomacy, Action in Mediation", took place on 30 June in Istanbul, Turkey.

The event was attended by experts, diplomats and scientists from several countries. The subject of mediation was discussed as a method of conflict prevention and resolution.

The agenda included two issues pertaining to the mediation potential at all stages of a conflict, from prevention to resolution and all the way to peace agreement implementation. The second key question would be the models for greater employment of mediation as a preventive tool in contexts where political, ethnic, religious biases create an environment of hostility. The latter is especially pertinent since the number of attacks against Muslims tends to increase.

Turkey's Foreign Minister, Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, was also present at the event. The official said that "the issue of mediation is particularly relevant because we have sadly witnessed extreme trends in various forms of political, social and religious animosities."

"The rise in attacks in Europe against Muslims and migrants is a case in point.  Prevention is the key. However, prevention would be possible only when societies recognize and learn to respect differences and engage in genuine dialogue and interaction. I believe that mediators who are well-equipped with the cultural codes of conduct in a given conflict situation can reach remarkable success. For that, we need to train more mediators including at youth while encouraging more women mediators and equip them with the right tools. Our challenges to make peace the overwhelming reality on a global level are immense. However, we should be able to see the opportunities within those challenges. The readiness and willingness of the international community to build capacity in peaceful resolution of conflicts including mediation must be a priority," said Çavuşoğlu.

According to experts, the status of mediation has increased significantly globally after it was created, at the proposal of Turkey, the Group of Friends of Mediators. The group now has 53 members, of which 48 states and five international organizations. Experts have acknowledged that the group has become the UN's main platform to promote mediation. It initiated the adoption of four resolutions from the UN General Assembly, which laid the foundation for the development of the normative and conceptual framework for mediation. The group also contributed to the emergence of the 2012 United Nations Guidelines for Efficient Mediation, a fundamental document for those who practice and study mediation.

Previously, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres expressed his readiness to further develop United Nations mediation capacity and said that Turkey positioned in the vicinity of a vast region where frozen and acute conflicts persisted, fulfilling its mediation missions successfully.

Turkey has hosted mediation conferences in Istanbul since 2012 and is considered the most generous country in terms of humanitarian assistance per capita. These conferences are meant to bring together practitioners and scientists in the field of conflict prevention and mediation activities. The aim of these ones is to promote synergies between theory and practice and to contribute to increasing the range of action and effectiveness of mediation efforts of the international community.

(Reporter A. Zara, editor M. Jantovan)