From the 23rd until 27 july a group of 15 Armenians, Kurds and Turks from Lebanon, The Netherlands and Armenia participated in the Initiatives of Change (IoC) program ‘Addressing Europe’s Unfinished Business (AEUB) at Caux Palace (Switzerland). Read here part 1 of the Report!
Day 3 – Presentation The Hague Peace Projects and next steps
In the Caux programs everybody is required to submit to a ‘community group’ with different theme’s. The community groups are for personal reflection in a small setting and to coordinate the kitchen duties. These are really interesting moments for reflection and inspiration, but since these gatherings are confidential, we cannot report about it.
After the community group and breakfast, the main hall was reserved for 16 key initiatives of ‘Building social cohesion in Europe’. The coordinators were asked to give a one minute plenary introduction, so participants could have an idea and decide whether they want to hear more about it in the next hour. There were three sessions from ten minutes each, to ask questions about the why, impact, key insights and next steps of the initiatives.
A quick summary of the ‘Armenian-Kurdish-Turkish diaspora dialogue in The Netherlands’ initiative:
Why: There is no dialogue and contact between communities since 2015, when the war broke out between Turkey and the PKK, after the peace process (2012-2015) failed.
Impact: It’s a small volunteer initiative in The Netherlands with incidental (project-based) funding, but there is a growing line. Talks with municipalities, ngo’s and self-organizations to reduce tensions between communities are gaining ground.
Key insights: Personal stories are a powerful method to ignite connection between people, without neglecting sensitive political questions.
Next steps: Talk with Dutch Members of Parliament and with the international Caux spirit behind our back doing projects in the country of origins (Turkey, Armenia, Lebanon and other countries).
Second Armenian-Kurdish-Turkish dialogue meeting
The Dutch group gave a powerpoint-presentation about what they did as a group since 2017. If you want to know more about this read here our reports of previous events.
After the presentation we formed a circle, and talked about next steps. Again, the need for an action-plan and follow-up was repeated. After intensive talks we decided that the next meetings should be ‘work-sessions’. We closed the day with an Armenian song leaded by Tato Martirossian.