Conference on “Building Peace and Preventing Conflicts during Economic Turmoil”, Finish Institute of International Affairs, Helsinki City Hall, 9 November 2012

FinlandThe civil war in Syria shows no sign of abating and the divided United Nations Security Council has failed to agree on how to deal with the situation. While observers warn of the possibility that the conflict will escalate and expand, shrinking finances seem to have led to a weakening leadership in responding to violent conflicts. What is the role of peace mediation in this grave situation, where the economic crisis seems to direct media attention away from the human suffering in conflict areas? What new forms of cooperation between public and private actors, for example between the UN Security Council and non-governmental organisations, could be forged to develop mediation in the conditions of increasing resource scarcity?

Welcoming words from the City of Helsinki: Laura Räty, Deputy Mayor of Helsinki
Welcome: Tuija Talvitie, Executive Director, Crisis Management Initiative
Opening speech: Jyrki Katainen, Prime Minister of Finland
Key note speeches
Chair: Teija Tiilikainen, Director, the Finnish Institute of International Affairs
President Martti Ahtisaari, Nobel Peace Prize laureate and United Nations diplomat and mediator
Lyse Doucet, Canadian journalist, presenter and special correspondent, BBC World Service radio and BBC World News television
Commentator: Erkki Tuomioja, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Finland

Robert Mood, Major General, Head of the United Nation’s Supervision Mission in Syria (UNSMIS) until 20 July 2012
George Soros, Chairman of Soros Fund Management and Chairman of the Open Society Institute

Panel discussion with all four key note speakers
Moderator: Tuija Talvitie, Executive Director, Crisis Management Initiative
Heidi Hautala, Minister for International Development, Finland
Silja Lehtinen, Olympic medalist and World Champion in sailing
Anne Berner, Board Member professional, Business Woman of the Year 2009

For further information please contact Sannamari Bagge or Kukka-Maria Kovsky.