Anna Cervi is an Italian national with almost 15 years overseas experience with International Organisations in leading humanitarian interventions in Syria, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Darfur. She negotiated and managed anumber of programs in support to peace and reconciliationpromoting the use of ADRs with particular focus on humanitarian access, gender, inclusion and transitional justice. In Syria since 2015, she just ended her assignment as Country Director of the Norwegian Refugee Council, where she was a spokesperson with the Government of Syria and in a number of high-level events in European capitals on behalf of the aid community. She became a member of the Mediterranean Women Mediators Network in 2019 to step up her efforts in support of women, peace and security. She is an associate of the School of Development Innovation and Change (SDIC), carrying out research on war and inequality. Anna is a qualified mediator by the International Mediation Institute (IMI), registering as a mediator with the Italian Ministry of Justice. She is currently studying to become a Certified Global Sanctions Specialist with ACAMS and doing research on women leadership in mediation and negotiations in humanitarian action and their contribution to peace. Anna holds two degrees in Development and Cooperation Studies from the University of Bologna and a Master of Science in Forced Migration from the University of Oxford. She further strengthened her mediation expertise by taking the Swiss FDFA’s Peace Mediation Course and other specialised courses on negotiations, women leadership and empowerment.
Ayat Mohamed is a Gender Analyst at the Office of the UN Special Envoy for Syria. She had previously worked on women and civil society inclusion in the Syrian political process with the Norwegian Centre for Conflict Resolution (NOREF). She is a strong proponent of women’s inclusion in political processes, mediation efforts and on all levels. Ms. Mohamed has experience in mediation support, social dialogue, inclusive peace processes. She has written on hybrid mediation and women in peace processes. She has experience working on Middle East contexts. Ms. Mohamed has an MA degree in political science, and speaks Arabic, English, and intermediate French.
Ambassador Cecilia Attard-Pirotta, currently Malta’s Ambassador to Israel, is a Maltese diplomat and has worked on Mediterranean, European Union and Commonwealth issues. She has also worked on projects for underprivileged girls, with a focus on education and improving the status of women. She has specialized in Mediterranean Affairs and her exposure to the realities prevailing in this Region, as well as her conviction that women’s participation in peace building processes in the Mediterranean is crucial, has instilled in her the conviction that women need to further engage in transforming and sustaining democracy, preventing conflict, as well as securing peace and security; this is what motivated her to join the group of founding members of the MWMN. While working on peace-related projects, She repeatedly underlines that peace is only the beginning of any reconciliation, not the end. Reconciliation requires numerous societal tasks, if it is to succeed and hence her engagement in promoting dialogue between women from different communities.
Chiara Segrado is an Italian national with almost 20 years of experience in International Development and Diplomacy, passionate about gender issues and women’s rights.
A graduate in International Relations and Diplomacy from the University of Trieste with a final thesis on the Empowerment of Women through Microcredit, she holds a Master-Degree in Microfinance from the University of Bergamo, Italy.
Her extensive experience in development spans from field work with Italian NGOs in Brazil and India to the UN Fellowship at the Italian Embassy in Cairo, Egypt and regional work in the Middle East with the International Finance Corporation (IFC, World Bank Group). She has worked as Regional Representative for the Middle East, South East Europe, Asia and Latin America for Save the Children Italy for 8 years, gaining strong field experience through extensive travel in all four regions and expertise in rights-based approaches, in particular for children and women.
In 2015 she has joined the United Kingdom Representation to the United Nations Agencies based in Rome as Deputy Permanent Representative to the World Food Programme (WFP); she has since increased her skills in multilateral diplomacy, intergovernmental processes and humanitarian affairs.
Chiara has joined the Mediterranean Women Mediators Network (MWMN) in 2020.
Edita Tahiri is a key founder and leader of the movement for independence of Kosovo. She was Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs for ten years during the hard times of Kosovo’s liberation (1990-2000), Minister of Dialogue, Minister of Public Administration, Peace Negotiator and Member of Parliament in five terms.
She has a long-standing experience in foreign policy and security, international relations, conflict resolution, international peace negotiations and post-conflict transitions. She is a distinguished peace negotiator and chief negotiator for Kosovo and the Balkan region with about 30 years’ experience. She is recognized as the only woman peace negotiator in the Balkans participating in the international peace processes such as the Rambouillet International Peace Conference on Kosovo (1999), Pre-Rambouillet Peace Negotiation (1998), London Conference on Disintegration of Former Yugoslavia (1992) and Chief Negotiator of Kosovo at the EU facilitated Dialogue on normalization of neighborly relations between Kosovo and Serbia (2011-2017). As the Chief Negotiator of Kosovo in the EU mediated peace talks with Serbia, she is the signatory of first ever-reached agreement between Kosovo and Serbia, after 20 years of peace talks.
She is dedicated to empowerment of women and WPS agenda and has been serving as Chair of the Regional Women’s Lobby in South East Europe for the past 14 years. She is a member of the Women Waging Peace Network.
She is a graduate of Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government with a Master’s Degree in Public Administration with a major in international relations. She holds a PhD in Political Sciences focused in the international state-building from Prishtina University in cooperation with SAIS Johns Hopkins University. She is a Fulbright Scholar and a graduate of George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies.
Johanna Hawari-Bourjeily, Lawyer, Mediator, trainer in mediation and relational communication at St. Joseph University, the Catholic Institute of Paris and at the Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers in Paris. She is the Founder and Director of the Professional Mediation Centre at St. Joseph University. She is also the Founder and President of the Lebanese Association of Mediators without Borders, and a mediator with the Professional Mediation Centre and the European Association of Mediators.
Justine Abi Saad is a Programs advisor for Civil Peace Program at GIZ –ZFD Lebanon, where she manages and deals with different partners working on different projects in Lebanon on local conflicts as well as conflicts with Palestinians and Syrian refugees. She is also a Trainer and Facilitator on Peace-building and Conflict Transformation for National and International organizations as well as representative for SALTO youth Euromed.
Ms. Abi Saad has been training with them since 2012, on different intercultural topics as well as on EVS program in order to prepare local organizations in applying for the program. In addition, she is a certified mediator with Saint Joseph University, CPM (Centre Professionel de mediation) besides the theory and practicing mediation throughout an academic year, she has participated as jury for the past 2 years. She has also delivered trainings in different regions in Lebanon for Lebanese and Palestinians with World Vision, Search for Common Ground, OTI and the Arab Network for Human Rights & Citizenship Education. Internationally, she has provided trainings, coaching and mentoring for UNDP, UNFPA, YMCA- Ireland, Ministry of Youth- Tunisia, EU Delegation-Tunisia, Pax Christi- Holland.
Furthermore, Justine Abi Saad has created tools on minority rights and conflict transformation, one of the tools is called “let’s talk” a board game on conflict and non-violent communication on which 4 players can roll a dice and play real life scenarios and negotiate their interests, needs and express their feelings and currently she is working to transform the elements this board game into a university course.
Karma Ekmekji is a Mediation Advisor with UN Women. She is also a Senior Policy Fellow at the Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International Affairs at the American University of Beirut and the Lead Advisor on their Women, Peace and Security initiative. Prior to this, she was the International Affairs and Relations Advisor to former Prime Minister of Lebanon Saad Hariri, where she served as the focal point for all international dossiers for eleven years. Before joining PM Hariri’s office in 2009, Karma was the National Political Officer at the United Nations Special Coordinator’s office in Lebanon where she briefed the Special Coordinator on political
developments and strengthened the office’s network base with Lebanese political parties. She had also served at the UN Secretariat’s Department of Political Affairs in New York.
Karma worked as a policy analyst for the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) tasked with conducting extensive research on electoral systems and reforms and with providing technical assistance to various regional Government agencies. She was present at the Doha Agreement in May 2008 to lobby Lebanese political parties to introduce reforms to the electoral law.
Stemming from a strong interest in empowering women in the field of diplomacy, peacemaking, mediation and negotiation, Karma founded the #Diplowomen initiative to share knowledge, develop mentorship opportunities and strengthen networking in this field. She is also the host of “The #Diplowomen Podcast”. She is a member of the Mediterranean Women Mediators Network and a member of the Global Alliance of Regional Women Mediator Networks, which she participated in launching during the 74th UN General Assembly in New York.
Karma, a lecturer in International Affairs and Women Peace and Security, was selected as a Munich
Young Leader in 2020. She was also selected to take part in the European Union Visitor’s Program in
2019 and is a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network. She is an advisor and member of the
Executive Board of the Intisar Foundation.
Karma is also a member of the British Government’s International Leaders Program and a “Personalité
d’avenir” – selected by the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In 2012, Karma was named one of the top
99 foreign policy leaders under 33 years of age by the Diplomatic Courier.
Lea Baroudi is a founding Member and Director of MARCH since 2012, a Lebanese non-profit organization focusing on sectarian conflict resolution, promoting diversity and equality and sustainable peace building, including the Women, Peace and Security agenda.
A certified professional mediator and a member of the Mediterranean Women Mediators Network, Ms. Baroudi has experience in resolving sectarian conflicts and foster peace among marginalized communities and has initiated and worked actively on peace-building projects that use art, culture, women inclusion and economic development to resolve conflict and counter radicalization among youth participating in sectarian violence in marginalized areas of Lebanon, particularly in Tripoli and Beirut.
She has also co-lead several in depth research papers and policy recommendations on fundamental security and human rights issues in Lebanon, such as political violence, radicalization and statelessness. In 2016, she was granted the Reagan-Fascell Fellowship at the National Endowment for Democracy during which she researched ways to develop unconventional methods in peacebuilding and conflict resolution.
In January 2019, she spoke at the UN Security Council Arria Formula meeting titled “What’s next for Women, Peace and Security in Middle East and North Africa: The Potential of National Action Plans”. She was recently awarded an MBE (Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) by Her Majesty the Queen for services to peacebuilding and civic rights in Lebanon.