Eide sends strong message to civic and political representatives: ‘Multi-stakeholder dialogue is the name of the game’
Earlier this week Special UN Adviser, Espen Barth Eide, told political party representatives and leaders from business and civil society that a multi-stakeholder dialogue is crucial to finding a solution to the Cyprus problem: “I do not think it is possible to arrive at a solution nor to implement a solution without the involvement of the broad society. This is something that only you, who live here can do”.
Mr. Eide had been invited to a dinner which was organised by UNDP-Action for Cooperation and Trust. The event was part of a series of ongoing discussions between political and civic representatives from both communities, and gave an opportunity for the Special UN Adviser to exchange views on the role of political and non-political actors in the peace process.
During the discussion Eide drew from his own experiences from around the world to demonstrate that resolving conflict required people to include multiple perspectives in the political dialogue. “People can express their opinions through different channels in society, and these are as important as those opinions expressed through the traditional political parties”.
Participants in the meeting spoke passionately about the need to support the formal negotiations through an inclusive inter-communal dialogue which brought together civil society, business, trade unions and political parties.
Eide responded by saying that there is always more than one perspective and this is where the value of dialogue lies: “Dialogue with the other side is characterised by bravery and courage”. Eide encouraged both sides to listen to each other and try to take into consideration the views of the other community. He noted that “if we try to listen to them, and that does not mean that we have to agree with them, we can try to hear what they are saying”.
The event took place at the Home for Cooperation on Wednesday 8th October, 2014.