Baghdad, Iraq, 05 April 2021 – A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed between the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Iraq and swisspeace, to strengthen efforts for peacebuilding and social cohesion in Iraq. The MoU provides a framework for collaboration and secures a two-year partnership between UNDP Iraq and swisspeace.
A peacebuilding organization based in Basel, Switzerland, swisspeace is dedicated to reducing violence and promoting peace in areas affected by conflict. These values are aligned with the UNDP Iraq Country Programme (2020-2024) that aims at strengthening the enabling environment for stability and peace in Iraq through mainstreaming conflict sensitivity in programming and strengthening community peace structures, including local peace committees, religious leaders, youth, women, and Community-Based Organizations for local peace processes. Local peace structures established by UNDP Iraq support the return and reintegration of Internally Displaced Populations, including families perceived to be affiliated with ISIL, into their communities, and rebuilding the social fabric.
UNDP Iraq Resident Representative Zena Ali-Ahmad emphasizes, “With thanks to the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs for their generous contribution, this collaboration with swisspeace will further strengthen our efforts for peacebuilding in Iraq through building capacities in the country for conflict mediation and peace building at the grassroots level.”
According to Matthias Boss, swisspeace Chief Operating Officer, “This partnership between UNDP Iraq and swisspeace will ensure that many peacebuilders at both local and national levels in Iraq will have access to the tools and techniques to help them serve their communities and stakeholders with the necessary confidence and skill. Working with peace actors in Iraq will add great value to swisspeace’s core work and expand its knowledge to achieve greater impact in local peacebuilding.”
UNDP Iraq has launched in 2020 a dedicated 5-year Social Cohesion Programme to promote stronger, peaceful, and more cohesive communities in all areas of Iraq.