Online peace workshop | Tuesday 25th and Wednesday 26th May 2021

An event organized by the French National Assembly in partnership with “Exiting Violence” the National Research Agency’s project, Violence: An International Journal and The international network La Bande Passante.

Making peace without the enemy is like making war without the enemy: it does not exist.Crises, but also disagreements and conflicts when they are not handled democratically, in a way that takes the form of debates and negotiations between actors, produce, among other consequences, political and geopolitical violence. This is a major problem, which concerns many states in the world as well as the international community. Today, can one still engage in dialogue with one’s enemy in order to resolve a conflict? Is it still possible to make peace?

In the past, the Western and Soviet blocs could talk to each other, negotiate and find geo-strategic compromises, and contain the cycle of violence. But today, can we still resolve, pre-vent, reduce and mitigate political and geopolitical violence? Getting around the table with one’s enemy seems more difficult than ever.Such issues can only exceptionally mobilize directly, without mediation, the actors involved in the war or armed struggle. To succeed in bringing them together around a table to go towards dialogue and transitional justice and to abandon the path of weapons is a considerable challenge that requires sometimes colossal efforts.It does require singular people, or even institutions, that are both neutral and committed to peace, capable of establishing trust, first with the actors concerned, but also between them. It requires the ability to mobilize all kinds of resources, networks, friendships, political con-tacts at the highest level, and to guarantee the security of negotiators within the peace pro-cess.It requires skills, culture and intelligence to enter into complex issues whose historical depth may resist analysis. It requires actors from all sides of the conflict. For all these reasons, the lessons of past and current peace negotiations are a rich resource and a valuable advantage for better resolving the conflicts of today and tomorrow. These first “peace workshops” will be devoted to two main issues:

1/ In the light of the crossexperience of different resolved or ongoing conflicts, with their mistakes and successes, how are the preliminaries, then the debates and negotiations in such processes organized to have any chance of success? What lessons can be learned from past experiences, with their mistakes and successes?

2/ Who are the indispensable mediators, their supporters, their allies, their adversaries as well? What status and what protection should negotiators be guaranteed?

To reflect on these questions, the “peace workshops” will mobilize various figures in mediation and negotiation, actors, as well as international researchers and experts.


Tuesday 25th May 2021
Day 1, 1/2
YouTube Live

Opening 09:4510:15

Sébastien Nadot, Member of the French National Assembly, member of the Foreign Affairs Commission.
Michel Wieviorka, Sociologist, codirector of Violence: An International Journal.
Thomas Lacoste, Filmmaker, founder of the international network La Bande Passante.

Introduction 10:1510:30

Pierre Haski, Journalist, geopolitical specialist, President of Reporters Without Borders.

Round Table n°1 – IsraelPalestine – 10:3012:00

Focus of the discussion:
1) What analyses can be drawn from the series of failed negotiations?
2) What options are there for breaking the deadlock in this conflict today?

Sébastien Nadot, Member of the French National Assembly, member of the Foreign Affairs Commission.

Dr. Hanan Ashrawi, Member of the executive committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization.
Avraham Burg Former, president of the Knesset.
Charles Enderlin, Journalist.
Hagit Ofran, Director of Peace Now’s Settlement Watch team.


Day 1, 2/2
YouTube Live

Round Table n°2 – Basque Country – 14:0016:00

Focus of the discussion:
1) The resolution of the conflict and the protection of the negotiators
2) A historic process due to its unilaterality and the need, today, for the involvement of both the French and Spanish states in the negotiation about the consequences of the conflict

Frédérique Espagnac, Member of the French Senate, involved in the Basque conflict resolution process.

Brian CurrinLawyer, expert in conflict resolution, founder of the National Directorate of Lawyers for Human Rights, founding member of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa, copresident of Northern Ireland’s Commission for the Review of Sentences, founder of the International Contact Group for the Basque Country.
Véronique Dudouet, Research director and expert in conflict resolution at the Berghof Foundation(Germany), former fellow of the US Institute of Peace, accompanied and advised civil society in the resolution of the Basque conflict.
Caroline Guibet Lafaye, Philosopher and sociologist, research director at the French National Centre for Scientific Re-search, member of the Emile Durkheim Center where she leads the European research programme on Political engagement and extraparliamentary actions, expert on the Basque conflict.
Josu Urrutikoetxea, Historic activist of ETA, former member of the Basque autonomous community’s parliament, key actor of Basque Country’s peace negotiations.
Judyta Wasowska, Regional Director for Latin America at the Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue (HD), based in Geneva, she has followed for HD Centre the whole process of exit from the conflict in the Basque Country, former personal assistant to the Executive Director of the HD Centre and, before that, senior secretary to the UNHCR Regional Representative in Caracas and the assistant high commissioner headquarters in Geneva.

Round Table n°3 – Colombia – 16:3018:30

Focus of the discussion:
1) How to move, through negotiation, from an armed actor to a strictly political actor?
2) How can a peace agreement be guaranteed in the event of a political change in the head of state?

JeanMichel Clément, Member of the French National Assembly, member of the Foreign Affairs Commission, lawyer.

Sergio Jaramillo Caro, Philosopher, diplomat, Government of Colombia’s High Commissioner for Peace (20122016), former Viceminister of Defence, former executive director of the Foundation Ideas for the Peace, senior advisor at the European Institute of Peace.
Yvon Le Bot, Sociologist,director emeritus at the French National Centre for Scientific Research, former UN consultant for peacekeeping operations and human rights safeguarding programmes in Latin America, head of the programmeExiting Violenceof the French National Research Agency andthe Foundation Maison des Sciences de l’Homme.
Tanja Nijmeijer, Former negotiator in the Havana peace process (20122016), and FARC excombatant.
Eduardo Pizarro, Professor at National University of Colombia; he served as Presiding Member of the National Commission for Reparation and Reconciliation of Colombia; member of the Board of Direc-tors of theTrust Fund for Victims of the International Criminal Court.
Maria Emma Wills, AdjunctProfessorat theUniversidad de Los Andes (Bogota),former advisor to the Director of the Colombian National Center for Historical Memory, involved in the peace process in Colombia, former Chair of the Political Science Department at Universidad de los Andes.

—Wednesday 26 May 202—

Day 2, 1/2
YouTube Live

Round Table n°4 – Democratic Republic of Congo – 10:0011:30

Focus of the discussion:
1) The democratic necessity
2) Geopolitics of Transitional Justice in Central and West Africa

Frédérique Dumas, Member of the French National Assembly, member of the Foreign Affairs Commission.

Pr. Luc Henkinbrant, Former United Nations official, initiator of the Mapping Report, expert in transitional justice.
Roger K. Koudé, Holder of the UNESCO Chair Memories, Cultures and Interculturality”, professor of international law at the Human Rights Institute of Lyon, Catholic University of Lyon.
Denis Mukwege, Doctor, director of the Hospital of Panzi, Nobel Peace Prize laureate 2018.


Day 2, 2/2
YouTube Live

Round Tablen°5 – Northern Ireland – 14:3016:00

Focus of the discussion:
1) A peace process driven by a well understood bilateralism
2) The contribution of the international community: USA, South Africaand European Union
3) Resistance of the peace process to the tensions generated by the Brexit

Paul Molac, Member of the French National Assembly, member of the Laws Commission, president of the FranceIreland Parliamentary Friendship Group.

Gerry Adams, Historic leader of Sinn Féin, honorary member of the British Parliament and the Northern Ireland’s Assembly, former political prisoner, negotiator and signatory of the Good Friday Peace Agreement.
Harold Good, Reverendin Northern Ireland,president of the Methodist Churchof Ireland, played a key role in Northern Ireland’s peace and supervised IRA’s and ETA’s disarmament, World Meth-odist Peace Award laureate.
Monica McWilliams, Academic researcher, expert in transitional justice, cofounder of the Northern Ireland Women’s Coalition political party, signatory of the peace negotiations of the Good Friday Peace Agreement, former member of the Northern Ireland Assembly, chief commissioner of the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission (20052011), and current member of the International Reporting Commission for the disbandment of paramilitary groups.
Jonathan Powell, British diplomat, Prime minister Tony Blair’s chief of staff, British government’s chief negotiatorin Northern Ireland (19972007), president and CEO of the NGO Inter Mediate.

Concluding Round Table – 16:3018:30

Focus of the discussion:
1) What lessons can be drawn from these experiences, with their mistakes and successes?
2) Who are the indispensable mediators, their supporters, their allies and their adversaries?
3) What status and protection should negotiators be guaranteed?

Sébastien Nadot, Member of the French National Assembly, member of the Foreign Affairs Commission.
Michel Wieviorka, Sociologist, codirector of Violence:An International Journal