The Folke Bernadotte Academy and the Centre for Conflict and Humanitarian Studies (Doha), have successfully concluded a landmark "Research Conference on Peacemaking and Statecraft in the Muslim World", between 10-12 February 2022 in Istanbul, Turkey.
The conference brought together over fifty (50) Islamic scholars, senior transitional leaders, peace practitioners, activists and academics from a wide range of Muslim majority countries including Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Nigeria, Syria, Turkey and Qatar as well as others. The express purpose of the Conference was to enhance existing peace-making and peacebuilding approaches and practices towards the Muslim world including through the adoption of a more culturally sensitive and Islamic-based and inspired conflict resolution framework consistent with international normative standards. This framework was developed by Muslim conflict resolution scholars and experts, working within the International Norms Project at the London School of Economics.
The Conference participants were united around two urgent priorities:
- The concern at the ongoing and persistent episodes of violent conflict that has engulfed the Muslim World over the last few decades.
- The need for a new paradigm of conflict resolution, peacemaking and statecraft that is based on and inspired by Islam, and compliant with International Norms, in order to help resolve these conflicts.
The conference was not oblivious to events in Afghanistan, and saw it as emblematic of the elusive peace, and in immediate need of statecraft strategies that could transition it from 40 years of conflict, to a society embracing transformation on the basis of sustainable values and the development needs of its people.
The conference was motivated, therefore, by the sole desire of all delegates - from ulema and activists, political leaders and academics - to spare the people of the Muslim world further violent conflict. Moreover, the conference was convinced that the path was one based on a progression from developing short-term transitional frameworks that bridge over to lasting comprehensive governance arrangements.
A unique contribution the conference grappled with over the three days, was how to base any intervention - from conflict resolution to peacemaking measures to models of statecraft - in the rich and longstanding scripts and traditions of Islam itself. A critical point of departure was that the Maqasid al Shariah (the Intents of Islamic Law) provided a foundation for Islamically-inspired normative standards and principles in relation to the relief of humanitarian suffering, the promotion of human development, respect for good governance, the advance of fundamental freedoms, establishing the rule of law, and the establishment of inclusive governance based on popular consultation.
Check the full Conference Communique bellow.