2nd Kurdistan Social Forum

24-25 October 2018, Sulaimani University

Sulaymaniyah, Kurdistan Region of Iraq

 

Un Ponte Per (UPP), Peace and Freedom Organization (PFO) and the Iraqi Civil Society Solidarity Initiative (ICSSI) would like to invite you to the annual event of the Kurdistan Social Forum, to take place in Sulaymaniyah from 24-25 October 2018 at the University of Sulaimani. The Kurdistan Social Forum (KSF) is a space for coordination among CSOs and networks in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, with a Secretariat based in Erbil and a committee of NGOs, trade unions and civil society organizations. The KSF was founded in September 2016 by Peace and Freedom Organization (PFO). Since its first annual event last year, KSF has been steadily building a new open civil society space for social justice movements in the Kurdistan Region, bridging political, civil, social, economic and cultural divisions. KSF activists seek to back civil movements in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq working towards political, economic and social reform in order to contribute to the development of an alternative future for the region. Last year’s forum, despite post-referendum political instability, was attended by hundreds of people in Erbil. This year the KSF will host an open event for all public in the city of Sulaymaniyah which has been long known as an open and tolerant cty. This will be an important opportunity for KSF activists to create a visible presence in this part of the Kurdistan Region, demonstrating that civil society within the KRI is united across political divides that have emerged since last year’s independence referendum. The formation of a new government and new parliament present new opportunies. In addition the participation of the Iraqi Social Forum, based in Baghdad will demonstrate the unity of civil society across the Baghdad-Erbil divide. During the 2-day event, five civil society working groups working on thematic issues coordinated within the KSF and operating under the project ‘Mesopotamian Youth for Democratic Governance, Social Cohesion and Reconciliation’ (funded by the European Union) will host specific assemblies to discuss the following topics: the protection of IDPs and minorities, social justice and employment, media promoting tolerance and democracy, women’s participation in civil society and policy-making, water rights and the protection of Mesopotamia’s rivers. The first day of the forum will consist of self-organized parallel workshops and assemblies organized by civil society organisations while the second day will consist of a convergence assembly and press conference.

For more information, please contact KSF coordinator Peshkawt Adham (07505754512).

First Day

Time Topic
9:00 – 9:20 Opening of the festival, welcoming participants.
9:20 – 11:00 Opening speeches by Peshkawt Adham (KSF Coordinator), Ali Saheb (ISF Coordinator), Ebtisam Ismaeil Qadr (Dean of Humanities) and international partners
11:00-1:00 Parallel workshops per working group on selected topics:

 

–          Social Justice and Employment

–          Media promoting tolerance and democracy

–          Protection of IDPs and Minorities

–          Water rights and the protection of Mesopotamia’s rivers

–          Women’s participation in civil society and policy-making

–          Compaing on income justice in Kurdistan region

 

 

1:00 – 1:30 Lunch break
1:30 – 3:00 Continued parallel workshops on selected topics

 

3:00 – 4:00 Joint session of the Kurdistan Social Forum and the Iraqi Social Forum on the ties between Erbil and Baghdad

 

4:00 – 4:30 Music by Mshakht band

 

Second Day

Time Topic
9:00 – 9:10 Opening of the second day, overview of the goals for the second day

 

9:10-9:30 Speech by EU Ambassador H.E. Ramon Blecua and Dr. Yusuf Goran, The Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research for the KRG
9:30 – 11:00 Joint assembly on the final  conclusions of the workshops on day 1
11:00 – 1:00 Parallel sessions on selected topics to design action plans for selected topics:

 

–          Social Justice and Employment

–          Media promoting tolerance and democracy

–          Protection of IDPs and Minorities

–          The sistuation of Neinawa plain and peace building paths

–          Water rights and the protection of Mesopotamia’s rivers

–          Women’s participation in civil society and policy-making

 

1:00 – 2:00 Lunch break
2:00 – 3:30 Joint assembly to present the action plans of the working groups
3:30 – 4:00 Press conference to present the final declaration of the KSF