In June 2023, more than 130 peacemakers, diplomats, experts and conflict parties from 50 countries gathered in Norway for the 20th anniversary of the Oslo Forum to assess opportunities for peace amid growing geopolitical divisions and violent confrontation on various continents.

The Oslo Forum 2023 report features a summary of two full days of discussions on the changing landscape of global and regional powers in mediation and peacemaking, the role of state mediators, and regional approaches to peace and security in Africa and Asia.

This special edition for the 20th anniversary also captures insights from discussions on issues of long-term stability – including conflicts in Yemen, Ethiopia, Somalia and Sudan. The report highlights the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan and the value of maintaining dialogue in challenging political contexts.     

Thematic sections showcase approaches for negotiating with criminal actors, advancing climate action in areas controlled by armed groups and working in the evolving frontiers of conflict and mediation, including the role of artificial intelligence.

Amid the biggest war in Europe in 75 years, the report delves into the tradecraft of the Black Sea Initiative, emphasising the potential for third parties to shape innovative agreements.

Alongside summaries of the sessions and photos of the retreat, interviews with mediators of different generations offer insights on the past and future of peacemaking in a world undergoing rapid changes.

Tracing history, the images and personal narratives of mediators, diplomats and experts chronicle the 20-year evolution of the Oslo Forum. With these memories, they reflect on the Forum’s importance as a discreet and safe space to share perspectives on conflicts, discuss complex issues and forge pathways to peace.

In 2003, the Oslo Forum began as a modest gathering of mediators sitting around a wooden dining table. Now the premier peacemaking retreat, the 20th anniversary event convened at a time of immense need for the tools of mediation.

Co-hosted by HD and the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Forum brings together the international mediation and peacemaking community to reflect on current practices, work on new approaches and advance their negotiations. To foster informed and open dialogue, all discussions take place under the Chatham House Rule.

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