Fragility Forum 2016 – March 1 Highlights
Strengthening Partnerships for Urgent Action to Tackle Fragility
Opening the Forum at a plenary co-organized with the United Nations, World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim emphasized the urgency for collective action, and set the stage for discussions by posing 6 key questions, asking participants for ideas to help rethink our collective responses to fragility and conflict. Distinguished leaders joining the panel were Jan Eliasson, UN Deputy Secretary-General, who said, “We must get better at stamping out the flames before they pose an existential threat to the social, economic and political fabric, which undermines human development.’ “A fragile state means fragility for the entire world,” said Central African Republic President Catherine Samba-Panza, encouraging partnerships that include international as well as local actors. With the growing refugee crisis high on the agenda, Nancy Lindborg, President of the U.S. Institute of Peace, stated, “We don’t have a refugee crisis. We have a fragility, conflict and violence crisis, and my great hope is we will not lose our focus on looking at the roots of that very difficult issue.” World Bank Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer Sri Mulyani Indrawati welcomed over 1200 registered participants from over 100 partner organizations.
Strengthening the Global Response to Forced Displacement
As the forced displacement crisis gains global attention, development actors have a clear role to play in supporting both the displaced and their host communities with humanitarian partners. At this session focused on how to improve collaboration, Deng Majok-gutatur Chol, co-Founder and Executive Director of the Lost Boys and Girls of Sudan, inspired the audience with his own experience living in a refugee camp for 10 years. “Refugees do not have voices. That’s why I am here today to try to speak on their behalf.” HRH Princess Sarah Zeid of Jordan, Director, Every Woman Every Child Everywhere; Mohamed Omer Arteh, Deputy Prime Minister, Somalia; Thomas Staal, Acting Assistant Administrator, USAID; Elizabeth Ferris, Senior Adviser to the UN General Assembly’s Global Summit on Refugees and Migrants; and Ali Sindi, Minister of Planning, Kurdistan Regional Government, Iraq joined the panel to bring diverse perspectives to light, stressing the importance of collaboration to ensure new, more effective ways of addressing the needs of displaced people and their host countries.
Spotlight: Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars
A lively performance by Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars capped off Day 1. Originally from Freetown, the group met in West African refugee camps after they were forced to flee their homes, escaping violent rebel attacks. Making music was a way to overcome their trauma. The band has gained international recognition as one of Africa’s top touring and recording bands. They also play an important diplomatic role as advocates for the plight of millions of refugees worldwide.