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Youth of Iraq & Peace-building: Catalysts for Change

Baghdad, Iraq; 23 September 2019 – Investing in young people can help put countries on a path to accelerated economic growth and equitable development. To that end, the Swedish government and the Folke Bernadotte Academy (FBA), in collaboration with UNFPA, have launched an initiative to train young men and women of Iraq on the principles of inclusive dialogue in peacebuilding.

On 22 September, the Embassy of Sweden, FBA, UNFPA, Iraqi Center for Negotiation Skills and Conflict Management (IQCM) and Peace and Freedom Organisation (PFO) launched a five-day training for 25 young men and women on inclusive dialogue processes in peacebuilding. The interactive sessions will focus on collaboration and dialogue in sustaining peace.

Participants were selected during a previous collaboration between UNFPA and FBA in April 2019 where a consultative meeting took place to assess the needs of young people through discussions on the challenges and visions they have for the future through peacebuilding engagements.

Ambassador of Sweden to Iraq, H.E. Mr Lars Ronnas, said: “The Inclusive Dialogue in Peacebuilding Programme provides a platform for young Iraqi peacebuilders to share experiences, strengthen their capacities and discuss challenges and visions for their future. The program mirrors the diverse Iraqi society as participants are invited from all over the country. I am very pleased that the Embassy of Sweden in collaboration with Folke Bernadotte Academy, UNFPA, IQCM and PFO this week will be hosting in Baghdad the first in a series of courses aimed at inclusive peacebuilding in which I firmly believe that young Iraqis will play a key and constructive role.”

UNFPA Deputy Representative in Iraq, Mr Himyar Abdulmoghni, commented on the importance of the training saying: “Empowering youth and strengthening their role in peacebuilding is one of the four pillars of UNFPA’s country programme. To ensure sustainable peace in Iraq, we need to redirect the efforts of youth towards the implementation of peace projects and engage youth more in peacebuilding processes: The inclusion and participation of youth in peacebuilding processes pave the way for youth to become the agents of peace in their societies.”

The Inclusive Dialogue Processes in Peacebuilding training is a part of a three week-programme laid out over seven months (September 2019-March 2020). The sessions will enhance the knowledge and practical ability of young people in the areas of peacebuilding, mindful communication, gender mainstreaming in peacebuilding, conflict analysis; inclusive dialogue, as well as the design and facilitation of dialogue sessions within their communities.


UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, delivers a world where every pregnancy is wanted, every childbirth is safe, and every young person's potential is fulfilled.

For more information or media inquiries, please contact: Salwa Moussa, Communications Specialist,

For more information or media inquiries, please contact: Folke Bernadotte Academy (FBA):