“Everyone is welcome to the Conference, which provides local people and visitors with a chance to view Northern Ireland’s journey from conflict through reconciliation to peace in the context of other international peace initiatives.”  Rotary Club President Gavin Killeen
Press Release – 8th April 2013

There are just 45 days left before Rotary International’s World President, Japanese paper magnate Sakuji Tanaka, arrives in Derry~Londonderry to mark the 15th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement and the culmination of his Rotary year of Peace through Service.

The Londonderry Rotary Club’s International Peace Conference, hosted in association with the University of Ulster’s International Conflict Research Institute (INCORE), is being held in Derry from 24th – 26th May 2013. 

The City of Culture event, which is supported by the Special EU Programmes Body, will welcome delegates from around the world including Juan Jose Ibarretxe Markuartu, the former Basque President and architect of the culture-led regeneration of the Basque Country; Roelf Meyer, the chief negotiator for the South African National Party in the talks that ended Apartheid, and ChouChou Namagambe, a gender activist working to protect women in conflict in the Congo.

The Conference - From Peacemaking to Peacebuilding ~ Journeys towards Reconciliation - provides everyone interested in a more peaceful society the opportunity to celebrate what has been achieved in the 15 years since the signing of the Good Friday Agreement.  The event will also explore work that is being done here and in South Africa, The Basque Country and the Democratic Republic of Congo to build and embed peace.

A session on ‘Making the Peace’ will examine Northern Ireland’s journey from conflict to peace from a government perspective.

‘Building the Peace’ will be delivered by Roelf Meyer, the chief negotiator of the National Party and former Minister of Constitutional Affairs in South Africa, who will reflect on the negotiations with the African National Congress which resulted in the end of apartheid and democratic elections in that country.

‘Working the Peace’ examines the Basque Case, with Juan Jose Ibarretxe Markuartu who was President of the Basque Country from 1999 to 2009. He is credited with driving the extraordinary transformation which has resulted in the Basque Country becoming one of the leading nations in the Human Development Index.

Rotary International’s world president Sakuji Tanaka will give a keynote speech on his theme for 2013 – Peace through Service. He will also plant a ceremonial tree to mark Derry’s participation in the Rotary Cross Border Peace Forest Project.

Additional speakers over the weekend will include Northern Ireland’s first Police Ombudsman Nuala O’ Loan, political commentator Eamonn McCann and politicians Dawn Purvis and Gregory Campbell as well as a senior representative of the Office of the First Minister and deputy First Minister.

Local Rotary Club President Gavin Killeen says:

“The Peace Conference is open to everyone interested in building a better society here.  It will take place at the Millennium Forum from May 24th to 26th. On Friday we will host panel sessions on what peace means to local people and showcase EU funded Peace Projects.  On Saturday we will compare experiences of the peace and reconciliation processes in Northern Ireland, South Africa and the Basque Country.

“2013 is a landmark year for Derry~Londonderry, the Rotary Club of Londonderry, Peace Studies at the local University and for the Northern Irish peace process,” adds Gavin.
“It is the 15th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement; the year Derry celebrates its designation as the first UK city of Culture; the 400th anniversary of the granting of the city’s charter; the 90th anniversary of the Rotary Club of Londonderry and the 20th anniversary of the founding of INCORE, the University of Ulster’s centre of excellence in peace studies.
“Everyone is welcome to the Conference, which provides local people and visitors with a chance to view Northern Ireland’s journey from conflict through reconciliation to peace in the context of other international peace initiatives.”

The programme for the conference can be viewed at http://www.rotaryglobalpeaceforumderry-londonderry.com where bookings can also be made.

Rotary International  

Rotary’s main objective is service — in the community, in the workplace, and around the globe. The 1.2 million Rotarians who make up more than 34,000 Rotary clubs in nearly every country in the world share a dedication to the ideal of Service Above Self. Rotary clubs are open to people of all cultures and ethnicities and are not affiliated with any political or religious organisations.

Rotary Club of Londonderry

The Rotary Club of Londonderry is a dynamic network of friends, actively working on worthwhile community projects that make a difference, at home and abroad.   We serve our community by contributing our time, expertise and the money we have raised to make a difference in our chosen areas of:

·         Reconciliation

·         Education and Skills

·         Health

·         Youth and Children

Contacts – Gavin Killeen – 07710113183; John McMonagle – 07775593161

INCORE at the University of Ulster

Established in 1993, INCORE (International Conflict Research Institute) is a joint project of the United Nations University and the University of Ulster. Combining research, education and comparative analysis, INCORE addresses the causes and consequences of conflict in Northern Ireland and internationally and promotes conflict resolution management strategies. It aims to influence policymakers and practitioners involved in peace, conflict and reconciliation issues while enhancing the nature of international conflict research.

INCORE is located within the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Ulster’s Magee Campus in Derry~Londonderry ­ and co-ordinates the varied peace and conflict-related activity across the University – encompassing work in disciplines such as politics, policy studies, history, international affairs, sociology, geography, architecture, communications and social work, as well as in peace and conflict studies. 

INCORE works in partnership with a variety of institutions and organizations – locally and internationally. Partner organisations include community groups and civil society organizations in Northern Ireland, peace and conflict-oriented NGOs and think-tanks in Northern Ireland and internationally, and academic institutions around the world.

Contact: Brandon Hamber – 07595087579



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