On Friday 24 April, Nordic Women Mediators-Norway (NWM-Norway) had its first ever virtual members' meeting. The topic of the meeting was the COVID-19 pandemic and how it affects peace processes and women's inclusion in peace processes worldwide. 25 members attended the meeting, including several members living outside of Norway. The meeting was organised by the network's Steering Group and the PRIO GPS Centre director Torunn L. Tryggestad chaired the meeting.
Asif Khan, Chief of Mediation Support, at the United Nations Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs (DPPA) briefed the members on the how COVID-19 affect peace processes around the world seen from a UN perspective, how the pandemic affects the work of the UN, and how to ensure inclusive peace processes under the current circumstances. Khan also reflected upon the responses to the global ceasefire call made by UN Secretary-General António Guterres on 23 March.
Furthermore, three NWM-Norway members presented at the meeting. Idun Tvedt gave a presentation on the current ceasefire and peace process in the Philippines, Monica Rafael gave an update on Colombia, and Hilde Kathrine Haug gave a presentation on the OSCE in light of COVID-19.
NWM-Norway is a national network of some 60 professional women with experience within conflict resolution and peacebuilding. The network members have expertise on a variety of issues relevant to all phases of peace processes, including mediation, ceasefire arrangements, constitutional reform, civil-military relations, international humanitarian law, human rights, communications and inclusion strategies. They range from mediators, diplomats, politicians, lawyers and military and police officers to thematic experts, civil society actors and communications and logistics specialists.