PARTICIPATORY PEACEMAKING:

A CIVIC/POLITICAL DIALOGUE PLATFORM IN CYPRUS

This initiative aims to create opportunities for senior political and civic leaders of the two communities in Cyprus to discuss their role in the peace negotiations

In September 2013 ENGI, together with its partner UNDP, supported a dialogue involving Cypriot politicians, business people and civic leaders.  Hosted in Malta, the dialogue assessed the future prospects for the Cyprus peace process, and concluded that there was a need for a more inclusive approach. (Read more about the meeting in Malta

In the last quarter of 2013 there was a continuing dialogue with party political representatives and in December the participants decided to explore options for a dialogue platform for Cyprus. Dialogue forums have been a feature of many peace processes around the world and they have often functioned as an inclusive multi-party platform to address all stakeholders’ concerns. 

The work of Engi / UNDP partnership, which included the conference in Malta in 2013 bringing together civic, business and political figures, gave birth to Cyprus Dialogue Platform.  It was launched on 12 March 2015 as the first of its kind in the Island's history.  Its aim is to act as an inclusive participatory platform for dialogue to support the ongoing negotiations.  It is designed to create a common space for dialogue and enable participants to establish common understandings on issues relevant to the peace process.  Its value would lie in its ability to act as a resource and knowledge base to the process.

PROJECT BACKGROUND

The idea for this valuable cooperation between ENGI and UNDP-ACT grew out of a previous collaboration. In partnership with the Causeway Institute, this initiative brought senior negotiators from the Northern Ireland peace process to share experiences of the Good Friday Agreement with civic and political leaders in Cyprus.

In May 2012 and in May 2103 UNDP-ACT and ENGI supported a delegation of Cypriot civil society leaders representing both communities, to speak at a meeting of the UK All Party Parliamentary Group on Conflict Issues. This was the first time that civil society representatives of the two communities presented a cohesive case for the structural reform of the peace process that would allow the harmonious collaboration of track 1 (the leaders), track 2 (civil society) and track 3 (the wider public).

For more information please contact please contact Yeshim Harris on +44(0)7815794545, or e-mail yharris@engi.org.uk