Earlier this month youth leaders from 15 Lebanese political parties (pictured) travelled with International Alert to Switzerland to learn about the Swiss experience of democracy.
The trip, which included representatives from a broad range of political parties in Lebanon, focused on how the Swiss manage plurality in politics and governance.
This report analyses the activity and influence of civil society organisations in Tunisia over the last two years, identifying the implications and opportunities for the broader Middle East and North Africa region.
We work on issues surrounding citizenship and governance in the Middle East and North Africa, and also provide guidance on strategic investment to regions affected by conflict.
In Tunisia we work to create the space and opportunity for civil society organisations and political leaders to work together to address the challenges of the political transition. We believe that a strong and vibrant civil society is essential for ensuring a peaceful transition that responds to the needs of the Tunisian public. To this end we seek to strengthen the capacity of civil society to represent the interests of diverse groups at the political level.
The pressure of participatory politics it taking its toll on Tunisia’s ruling Nahda party. Factions within the Nadha party are all the more prevalent after the resignation of Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali on 19 February. The Secretary General of Nahda relinquished his role as prime minister after failing to convince his party of a plan to unite Tunisia.
Last month representatives from the youth wings of 18 political parties in Lebanon shared a joint declaration on the rights of Palestinian refugees. The declaration was the result of a series of discussions supported by International Alert to encourage peaceful debate among the political parties in the country.
International Alert is proud to present its new annual report, “Peace Talks”, which looks back at Alert’s work and impact in 2011 – when Alert celebrated its 25th year – using dialogue as a theme.
Dialogue is a vital tool we use in our peacebuilding work, and we hope that by showing you in this annual report some of the practical ways in which we use dialogue to bring people together or to improve face-to-face communication in situations where communication has broken down, you will get a good sense of how we work as well as our objectives. The regions we focus on in this report to illustrate our theme are Uganda, South Caucasus, Lebanon and Sri Lanka.
Although Lebanon is known in the Middle East for its relative political openness and for the degree of freedom Lebanese women enjoy, it paradoxically has one of the lowest rates of women’s political engagement in the region. This report examines the extent to which women are currently involved in politics in Lebanon, as well as the opportunities for increasing their involvement, by drawing on Alert’s work with the youth wings of Lebanese political parties and a conference Alert held on the topic of promoting gender equality in political parties. The first part of this report presents diverse perspectives from Lebanese and international experts within their conference speeches, and the second part includes an analysis of interviews with Lebanese youth, in which they reflect on their hopes, concerns and ideas for improving gender equality in Lebanese politics in the future.
International Alert’s engagement in Lebanon began in 2009. Alert’s long-term goal in Lebanon is to contribute to a political process that reconciles the desires of its diverse communities for security, freedom and development with the interests of an equitable, democratic and peaceful Lebanese nation. Through our work, Alert seeks to contribute to the management of Lebanon’s multiple conflicts without recourse to, or the threat of, violence.