Nudge is proud to announce that Jeffrey Jonkers, keynote speaker on the first day of the Global Challenge (20 – 22 October 2016) will share his experiences as Advisor peace and reconciliation processes in the Middle East.
Ten years ago Jeffrey went to Palestine to interview local women about life under conflict; he never really left the Middle East after that. Working in Fragile and Conflict-Affected States, with a strong focus on actual delivery and real change in people’s lives, he has managed political transition, stabilisation and peacebuilding programmes throughout the Middle East and in Afghanistan, including non-violent conflict resolution in Palestine, civilian casualty investigation in Afghanistan and governance initiatives in Egypt, Yemen and Northern-Iraq.
Most recently Jeffrey has been working with a team of civilian negotiators in Syria to achieve local ceasefires, access to education and release of prisoners, as well as dialogue with various rebel groups.
Central to his approach is the inclusion of those groups that are most marginalised or explicitly excluded from peace-processes and state-building: ensuring that everyone’s voice is heard at the table.
“You have to talk to IS in order to make sure that citizens are safe” he states in an interview.
Furthermore, Jeffrey thinks that peace can only develop when children have the possibility to go to school, when teachers get their salaries and when people have the opportunity to sell their food on the markets. Citizens should have a feeling of control about their own life and their children.
”With helplessness you lose the battle” he says and refers to people in Syria supporting IS because they don’t see any other option.
Currently Jeffrey advises the South Sudan Council of Churches in implementing their Action Plan for Peace, which is instrumental in ending the ongoing conflict and the establishment of transitional justice and reconciliation mechanisms in the world’s youngest, but most fragile, country.
During the Challenge Jeffrey will talk about the influence of Climate Change on World Peace and share his knowledge and experience as a mediator and peace builder.