Brian Cliff Olguin
Brian Cliff Olguin

On 23-25 October, there will be a gathering of regional women mediator networks in New York. The meeting is organized as a collaborative effort between by Femwise-Africa, the Mediterranean Women Mediators Network (MWMN), the Nordic Women Mediators (NWM), and the Women Meditators across the Commonwealth (WMC). It is hosted by the International Peace Institute (IPI).

The gathering builds upon the Oslo meeting that took place in March 2018, organized by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs together with PRIO and NOREF – Norwegian Centre for Conflict Resolution, where representatives of different regional women mediator networks met to explore possibilities for enhanced collaboration, recognizing their common goal of strengthening the meaningful participation of women in peace processes at all levels. At the end of the Oslo meeting, the participants agreed to continue this discussion. The upcoming meeting in New York provides an opportunity for this.

The two and a half day-meeting will be kicked off with a public side event at the ECOSOC Chamber called "Enhancing Partnerships for Increased Women's Participation and Influence in Peace Processes: Towards an Alliance of Regional Women Mediators Networks". This event is sponsored by the Permanent Delegation of Egypt and organized by the regional women mediator networks, in cooperation with UN Women. Speakers include Catherine Samba-Panza (FemWise-Africa), UN Secretary-General António Guterres (TBC) and representatives from the other regional networks.

Following the public event, the network members will participate in a closed session where they will share experiences and lessons learnt from ongoing mediation efforts, and from operationalizing the regional women mediator networks more specifically. They will also discuss possibilities for strengthened global cooperation, joint messaging and other opportunities for closer cross-regional cooperation. The final session of the meeting will take place in the morning of 25 October, when participants will have the opportunity to observe the opening session of the Open Debate on Women, Peace and Security in the UN Security Council.

Four members of the NWM-Norway network will participate at the meeting. In addition, PRIO GPS Centre Manager Linn Marie Reklev will participate on behalf of PRIO, as PRIO is one of the operational partners of the NWM-Norway network.