Local Antennas

Throughout the years, the Secretariat has worked closely with its members to identify projects and activities that could be conducted locally to further promote the objectives and mission of the Network. This has led to the establishment of antennas, local realities of the Network where the members engage with a wider group of women involved in peacebuilding and mediation at the local level and conduct initiatives.

A meeting in July 2018 in Cyprus hosted by the Cyprus Women’s Lobby with the support of the MWMN, Women Mediators across the Commonwealth, WILPF and UNFCYP planted the seeds for a local antenna. In that occasion, 26 women peacebuilders from across the island met to discuss the issue of women’s participation in the island peace process and identify possible island-wide strategies and approaches to ensure greater inclusivity. 

Following deep discussions and preparations on the establishment of a local MWMN reality, on May 17-18 2019, the MWMN launched the Cyprus Antenna. The two-day event was initiated with a public session where the challenges of women’s meaningful and effective participation in mediation and peacebuilding efforts at the global level were discussed; followed by an interactive mediation workshop on inclusive and gendered mediation and peacebuilding dedicated to local women.

About the Antenna

MWMN – Cyprus is an island-wide intercommunal initiative launched in May 2019 in Nicosia with a view to strengthen the role of women both as drivers of peace in Cyprus through their inclusion at all stages of the peace process and as active agents in all areas of life in a democratic society.  

The five initiating members of the Cyprus Antenna come from across the island and have a long history and substantive expertise within peacebuilding and gender activism.  Three of them were present at the launch of the Mediterranean Women Mediators Network in October 2017 in Rome, and they soon started to involve the wider Cypriot community of peacebuilders highlighting the importance of an inclusive and island-wide initiative to promote inclusive and sustainable peace process and agreement. This led to welcoming two new members from the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus and the creation of MWMN-Cyprus, the local antenna of the Network. The antenna has also participated to the launch of the Global Alliance of Regional Women Mediator Network in New York in September 2019.

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In January 2019, the Turkish members of the network met with women mediators across the country to discuss the possibility of establishing a MWMN local antenna. The meeting was an opportunity to debate issues concerning women’s role in mediation and peacebuilding processes so as to foster the creation of a local community of women mediators in Turkey launching the antenna.

On June 29-30, 2019 the MWMN launched the Turkey Antenna gathering activists, experts and practitioners from across the country and internationally. The two-day event dedicated sessions ranging from a broader analysis of mediation and gender-inclusive mediation from academic and international organizations’ perspectives, to local and regional examples of mediation and success stories.

About the Antenna

The Mediterranean Women Mediators Network Turkey Antenna is an initiative, which aims to strengthen the role of women in the processes of mediation, negotiation and peace building and to utilize these mechanisms in creating a public discourse in this respect. The membership of the Antenna comprises women from Turkey with a wide range of affiliations, including members of civil society, academia, mediation and politics and have professional expertise in gender issues, conflict resolution and peace building. The Antenna, which is created under the international umbrella of the Mediterranean Women Mediators Network (MWMN), is not organically linked to any political entity or civil society organization.

The mission of the Antenna is to enable women mediators in Turkey to meaningfully participate in all phases of peace and conflict resolution processes in order to achieve gender sensitive conflict resolutions and peace building outcomes. In this respect, the Antenna aims to undertake relevant research and disseminate its findings, organize seminars and training sessions to enhance women’s mediation capabilities and skills, and develop applied conflict resolution activities, including to foster partnerships and cooperation with other mediation and peace building networks nationally and globally.

In accordance with United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security, women’s role in mediation and peace building are well recognized and acknowledged by member states and international institutions. However, in Turkey, women’s peace initiatives are not sufficiently visible, yet, as emphasized by 1325, women can make significant contributions to gender equality and sustainable peace.

The antenna was founded, in June 2019, by a core group comprised of around twenty women representing different sectors and backgrounds in Turkey. Members include experts and academics working on gender, mediation, conflict resolution as well as practitioners of mediation such as lawyers and other professionals like journalists and women civil society leaders. At the moment the antenna is not accepting new memberships but discussions on criteria for membership are ongoing and will be announced later. 

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