Timeline

High Level Policy Engagement

QUNO engages with the broader policy debates on peacebuilding and prevention at the UN in New York. From time to time QUNO also works on topical situations such as Palestinian statehood.
August 2015

Peace and Post-2015: What's Now?

In August QUNO New York hosted an informal civil society strategy session at Quaker House to discuss the next steps for peace issues within the soon-to be adopted Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Primarily focusing on Goal 16 - Promoting Peaceful and Inclusive Societies - civil society representatives, as well as selected member state representatives and UN officials, discussed an array of next steps concerning the implementation, measurement, and communication of the agenda. 

The session additionally addressed the importance of forming partnerships across the wider peace community and explored possible linkages with other major processes at the UN, including the Peacebuilding Architecture review, the Peace Operations review, the World Humanitarian Summit, and the UN Plan of Action on Preventing Violent Extremism. 

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Event of Note
July 2015

Arria-Formula Meeting on Gaza

For the first time since 1997 and just the second time ever, the Security Council held an Arria-Formula meeting focusing specifically on the issue of Palestine. Co-sponsored by the Permanent missions’ of Malaysia and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, with assistance from the Israel-Palestine NGO Working Group, the meeting: "Reflections One Year Later and Charting a New Course for Gaza" featured briefings from speakers from civil society and academia, and was well attended by Council members and the UN community alike. 
 
Security Council member states were largely represented at the highest level, and were constructive in their response to the four speakers' testimonies.  Many member states welcomed the convening of the Arria-Formula Event, and issued their support for new Security Council initiatives that might arise. There was a general agreement that the current situation in Gaza is unsustainable and must be alleviated, with interventions focusing on the need to lift the blockade, for donor's to fulfil aid pledges, and for actors to ensure that steps are taken to prevent future hostilities.
 
QUNO has been an active member of the Israel-Palestine NGO Working Group since its founding in 1999. The working group is a coalition of organizations that have meet to share information and advocate for a just peace in Israel and Palestine.

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July 2015

QUNO Presents at Beijing 70th UN Anniversary Event

QUNO New York Director Andrew Tomlinson was invited by the UN Association of China to be a plenary speaker at a Beijing event celebrating the 70th Anniversary of the United Nations. Quakers have had a long association with China, and this was an occasion to renew old acquaintances and make some new contacts.

QUNO's presentation, "The UN’s role in maintaining international order: preventing violent conflict and fostering peaceful and inclusive societies", which calls for using a prevention lens across development, humanitarian assistance, economic and security activities, was well received.

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July 2015

QUNO interviewed for ACUNS podcast on peace and post-2015

QUNO New York Director Andrew Tomlinson was interviewed by the Academic Council on the UN System (ACUNS) for their "Current Issues" podcast series, where he discussed his recent article, Peace and Post-2015: Into the Home Stretch, which is focused on Sustainable Development Goal 16: “Promote peaceful and inclusive institutions at all levels.”

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July 2015

QUNO co-organizes Beijing workshop on UN Peace Practices

QUNO New York, together with the United Nations Association of China (UNA-China), the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), and the Conflict Prevention and Peace Forum (CPPF) jointly held a workshop entitled “Emerging Views on Global Peace Practice: New Directions in UN Peace Operations at the Occasion of the 70th Anniversary” in Beijing. The workshop brought together Chinese academics, civil society practitioners, and experts from Africa, Europe, and the United Nations to discuss current UN peace strategies and practices. The participants actively engaged in discussions over the current reviews of the UN's Peacebuilding Architecture and Peace Operations, shared various country-focused experiences, and held an inspiring dialogue on gender perspectives in peace endeavours. More broadly, the workshop provided an opportunity for exchanging perspectives and promoting better understanding among Chinese, Western, African, and UN-based experts on UN peace operations and peacebuilding practices.

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July 2015

QUNO co-hosts discussion on the transition from conflict to development

QUNO New York, together with Club de Madrid, as part of their Shared Societies project, co-hosted an informal conversation at Quaker House with Mr. Abdurrahim El Keib, former Prime Minister of Libya and Mr. Zlatko Lagumdzija, former Prime Minister of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The meeting focused on the importance of connecting high-level policy discussions to the realities of countries in transition, and that well-thought out mechanisms to support political inclusion are vital components to consolidating development and progress in a post-conflict context.

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June 2015

QUNO launches new report with GPPAC on civil society inclusion in UN peacebuilding

QUNO hosted a series of discussions at Quaker House in New York to launch a new report by QUNO and the Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC) entitled Filling the Gap: How civil society engagement can help the UN’s Peacebuilding Architecture meet its purpose. The report is a contribution to the 2015 review of the UN's Peacebuilding Architecture and includes concrete recommendations for how the UN can improve the way in which it collaborates with civil society on peacebuilding, both in New York and in country. In the launch events, the two co-authors from QUNO and GPPAC were joined by local researchers from Burundi, the Central African Republic, and Liberia, who shared their experiences with peacebuilding and conflict prevention in their own countries.

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June 2015

Funding for Peace: Lessons Learned

The Quaker United Nations Office and the NYU Center on International Cooperation (CIC) hosted an informal discussion at Quaker House on lessons learned in funding for peace. The event involved representatives from the UN, Member States and civil society, and sought to identify how such lessons might be reflected in the outcome document, the Addis Ababa Accord, of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development, in July 2015. 

Many participants noted the imperative need to provide mechanisms to fund the promotion of peaceful and inclusive societies. Funding Goal 16 will be critical to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and will require flexible, risk-tolerant and coordinated approaches that will promote resilience by addressing the root causes of violence and instability, reducing humanitarian need and building institutions in a sustainable and inclusive manner. 

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May 2015

QUNO goes to Washington: Alliance for Peacebuilding Conference Meetings

QUNO New York Director Andrew Tomlinson participated in the Alliance for Peacebuilding 2015 Annual Conference, Peacebuilding and Democracy in a Turbulent World, to provide a UN perspective on peace and development issues, including leading a group discussion as part of a session on the State of the Peacebuilding Field. QUNO has sought to reinforce links between peacebuilding policy discussions at the UN and other policy centers, such as Washington DC. 

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May 2015

QUNO supports peace and reconciliation in Burundi

QUNO New York, along with nine other Quaker organisations, have jointly issued a statement on Burundi entitled "Standing for Peace and Reconciliation." This statement draws attention to the current crisis in the country, highlights the important work of Friends in Burundi on trauma healing, reconciliation, and violence prevention, and lifts up the views of Burundian Friends on the need for a political resolution to the crisis, on the importance of dialogue, and that true peacebuilding is a process that needs support in the long-term. 

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April 2015

Peace and Post-2015: Into the Home Stretch

As the post-2015 inter-governmental negotiations continue to move towards finalising a new development agenda, we are pleased to bring you an Author's Original Manuscript version of the article "Peace and Post-2015: Into the Home Stretch," that was recently published in the Journal for Peacebuilding and Development. Written by QUNO New York Director and UN Representative, Andrew Tomlinson, the piece reflects on the current state of play of the inclusion of peace issues in the soon to be agreed Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

With the culmination of negotiations in July 2015, and the forthcoming United Nations Summit to adopt the post-2015 development agenda in September 2015, we will continue to work for the inclusion of peace issues in the final agreement. Together with partner organisations from civil society, we recognise this "unique opportunity for those with an interest in fostering peaceful, just and inclusive societies to help both to contribute to the grand vision, and to shape the way in which issues of peace, justice and inclusion are prioritized, implemented and monitored for decades to come."

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March 2015

Emerging Issues in Peacebuilding & Prevention Reception

The Quaker United Nations Office in New York, in association with Ambassador Sofia Borges, Timor Leste, and Ambassador Vandi Minah, Sierra Leone, co-hosted a reception at Quaker House on 10 March for member state delegates and senior representatives of peacebuilding policy organizations from around the world. 

In a well-attended event, conversations touched upon the number of key processes and conversations that will occupy the United Nations community this year, and that will have an impact on the policy environment for peacebuilding and the prevention of violent conflict for the next decade or more. These topics included the reviews of UN Peace Operations, the UN Peacebuilding Architecture and UNSCR 1325, as well as the broader consideration of peace and justice issues within the post-2015 agenda.

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March 2015

Bringing the Voices of Local Peacebuilders to the UN

As part of the New York Peacebuilding Group, a gathering of organisations (the Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation, the Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict, the International Peace Institute, Interpeace, PAX, Peace Direct, the Quaker United Nations Office, and World Vision) engaged on various peace-related issues at the UN and in country, QUNO hosted local civil society representatives from Burundi, the Central African Republic, Guatemala, Liberia, Mali, South Africa, and Timor Leste in New York. The purpose of the visit was to meet with the panel experts conducting the reviews of the UN's Peace Operations and Peacebuilding Architecture. The local representatives shared their community-level peacebuilding experience and perspectives with the panelists in order to contribute to the improvement of UN peace practices. The three-day consultation also included a series of workshop meetings at Quaker House and a panel event at the International Peace Institute. 

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March 2015

Engagement with the New York University Center for Global Affairs on the new Sustainable Development Goals

As part of a workshop organised by the New York University Center for Global Affairs on the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), QUNO NY Director Andrew Tomlinson was one of two speakers for the opening plenary session, along with Professor Sakiko Fukuda-Parr from the New School for Public Engagement. Andrew provided a detailed overview of the lengthy process to replace the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) with the new SDGs framework, and noted the contrasting experience of civil society engagement in each process. A lively interactive session followed the opening remarks, during which a range of insights were shared highlighting the challenges that remained for the numerous stakeholders engaged in the vast inter-governmental negotiating process at the UN throughout 2015.  

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January 2015

Peace and Post-2015: What's Next?

In January QUNO hosted an informal civil society strategy session on Goal 16 and the role of related peace issues in the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). After many years of inputs, from a variety of different sources and streams, the process to replace the Millennium Development Goals with the transformative SDG framework enters its final stages. 

Civil Society representatives in New York and by phone from London and Washington were joined by selected member state representatives and UN officials. The session took stock of the conversation to date, reviewed the Secretary General's December 2014 synthesis report specifically from a peace perspective and considered potential points of entry for the coming year. 

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November 2014

Freedom from Violence: Peace, Security and Conflict Prevention in the Post-2015 Development Agenda

On 19 November QUNO Director Andrew Tomlinson spoke as part of an expert panel as part of a four-day seminar on “Freedom from Violence: Peace, Security and Conflict Prevention in the Post-2015 Development Agenda." Hosted by the World Federation of United Nations Associations (WFUNA), and joined by representatives from Beyond2015 Campaign, and Save the Children, QUNO shared a series of insights and reflections to participants representing United Nations Associations from Armenia, India, Uganda, Rwanda, South Africa, and Venezuela. A lively interactive discussion followed the initial presentation, as participants shared national perspectives and priorities for the year ahead. 

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July 2014

Read the New York office's most recent Newsletter, In & Around the UN

The New York office is please to share our most recent Newsletter, featuring articles on Burundi, Somalia, Peacebuilding, the post-2015 Development Agenda and the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.

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June 2014

QUNO hosts discussion on Peaceland book

QUNO hosted an informal discussion at Quaker House in New York for Dr. Severine Autesserre from Barnard College to share the findings of her new book Peaceland: Conflict Resolution and the Everyday Politics of International Intervention. Peaceland offers a fascinating new explanation for why international peace interventions often do not reach their full potential. Through field-based research in conflict zones around the world, Dr. Autesserre demonstrates how normal everyday habits, practices, and personal narratives can influence the way in which peacebuilding is done on the ground.

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June 2014

QUNO Contributes to Peacebuilding Commission Annual Session

QUNO was invited to participate in the first ever UN Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) Annual Session in New York on June 23rd, which focused on Sustainable support for peacebuilding: the domestic and international aspects. Andrew Tomlinson, QUNO Director, made comments in the workshop sessions on “The importance of inclusion, transparency and consultation in revenue mobilization” and “Long-term accompaniment of societies in transition: a role for the PBC?”

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