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Nonviolence News


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(Issues 58-107)
(Issues 1 to 57)
Dawn Train

Number 182: September 2010

The war in Afghanistan and Pakistan - a local view
A meeting on Thursday 30th September 2010 at 7.30 pm in Corrymeela House, 8 Upper Crescent, Belfast. Organised by INNATE - all interested welcome. Speaker; Ali Gohar, Founder and Advisor, Just Peace International, Peshawar (see ) 'The West', and particularly NATO, has become bogged down in a war of attrition in Afghanistan and across the border into Pakistan. How is this war experienced on the ground? Why do people resist? How can the war and slaughter, with its resultant misery, be brought to an end? What else can we learn about Pashtun culture beyond the stereotypes of the Taliban, and what possibilities exist for positive change in the region? The speaker, Ali Gohar, works in Pakistan and Afghanistan and has among many achievements in his career dealt with issues of domestic violence, restorative justice, and written and worked on developing the jirga as a means of conflict resolution. Contact INNATE, details at end of newssheet, for further information.

Ali Gohar is likely to be speaking on the same topic the evening before this, Wednesday 29th September, in Derry; look for local publicity.

White poppies for remembering
The season of Remembrance in Britain and Ireland is fast approaching and there was considerable debate about poppies and poppy wearing in Ireland last year. The Peace Pledge Union has white poppies available as “a symbol of grief for everyone who has been harmed by war but, more importantly….a symbol of determination to work to abolish war.” These are available for sale individually or in 5, 10, 25 or 100 poppy packs, along with other resources on war. Peace Pledge Union, 1 Peace Passage, London N7 0BT, ph 020 7424 9444, or contact and website

INNATE has a limited number of white poppies available but would recommend anyone wanting a number to contact the PPU directly.

Another Irish boat for Gaza
Plans are afoot, and fundraising underway, to send another Free Gaza boat from Ireland. The Irish Ship to Gaza Campaign held its media launch on 30th August. The group, known as the Irish Ship to Gaza Campaign, is planning to join the “Second Freedom Flotilla” being overseen by the Free Gaza Movement, IHH (Turkey) and the European Campaign to End the Siege of Gaza. The panel at the launch consisted of Fintan Lane, Free Gaza Movement, Sinead MacLochlainn, Derry Friends of Palestine, Claudia Saba, Irish Anti-War Movement, Freda Mullin Hughes, Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Mags O’Brien, Trade Union Friends of Palestine and Issam Ben Ali, Palestinian Rights Institute. The Irish Ship to Gaza Campaign aims to maximize Irish participation on the Freedom Flotilla 2. The purpose of the flotilla is to peacefully breach the blockade to open up the Gaza seaport for trade and to bring much needed humanitarian aid to Gaza. Between 10 and 15 ships will be in the next flotilla which will include cargo ships with aid and passenger ships. The Irish Ship to Gaza Campaign will be travelling around Ireland to seek support and there will be fundraising events throughout Ireland, North and South. The second flotilla is being planned for late October or early November with fundraising to take place over the next few months. The Israeli Government has imposed a blockade on Gaza since 2006 amid claims that arms shipments were being brought into the port. Details of events and for making donations can be found at

Why Violence week
This runs from International Day of Peace on 21st September through to International Day of Non-violence (Gandhi’s birthday) on 2nd October, the aim being to have a varied programme of events happening in this period organised by different organisations on particular relevant themes. The closing date for the Alternative Turner Prize competition (see the Why Violence website or NN 179) has been extended to 21st September. See or contact or Why Violence? The Campaign for Violence Reduction, c/o Quaker House, Stocking Lane, Rathfarnham, Dublin 16.

MNI training
Open access training from Mediation Northern Ireland coming up in the next year includes: Handling Life’s Conflict Training on Wednesday 19th and Thursday 20th January 2011; Open College Network accreditation at either Level One or Level Two – fee £270. Foundation Training in Mediation starts in February, running on Wednesday & Thursday 9th and 10th, Thursdays 17th, 24th February & 3rd and 10th March 2011; Open College Network Level 2 (6 credits) – fee £795.   Group Mediation Skills takes place on Wednesday & Thursday 11th and 12th, Thursdays 19th, 26th May and 2nd, 9th June 2011; Open College Network accreditation Level Three (6 credits) – fee £895. All take place at a north Belfast venue. In general the open access training is a progression path; HLC is usually a prerequisite to the FTM.  There are exceptions where you can demonstrate that you have equivalencies.  GMS is for the more experienced and it is preferable if you have conflict intervention experience/practice.  Contact: Máire Patton, Mediation Northern Ireland, 83 University Street, Belfast BT7 1HP, ph 028 90 438614, e-mail and web

CSI (Norn Iron Participative version)
No, it’s not a US television drama import but the NI Executive’s consultation on its draft Programme for Cohesion, Sharing and Integration (CSI) launched by the Office of the First and Deputy First Minister in July. The consultation period on the document runs until 29th October 2010 and during the month of September OFMDFM are hosting a number of public consultation meetings to hear views from the public around the North.  For further information go to here (through which you can access the document) and e-mail

Towards a requisite variety of mediation
The Mediator’s Institute of Ireland will host its 12th Annual Conference in the Grand Hotel, Malahide, Dublin, on 6th and 7th November 2010. This flagship event provides Mediators and conflict management specialists with a unique opportunity to avail of cutting-edge skills and practice development as well as a forum to network and share ideas with their peers. To survive and prosper every system needs variety and difference, and this year’s theme - Towards a Requisite Variety of Mediation - focuses on embracing a diversity of approaches and thinking; only then can we strengthen our capacity to deal with ever more complex conflict situations and build the ‘robust fitness’ we need as Mediators and conflict practitioners, to assist people in creating agreement.

The keynote speaker is Dr Izzeldin Abuelaish, a Palestinian doctor involved in peace-building in Gaza for many years. Workshops have varied themes - Drama Theory and Mediation; Dealing with Risk and Complexity in Mediation; Overview of the Civil Partnership Bill, to name but a few - all of which will equip you with new tools, interventions and challenges to your thinking. For further information and online booking, see the general website at The early bird booking rate (to 17th September) is €250, not including accommodation, and there are rates for single days etc. The MII, 35 Fitzwilliam Place, Dublin 2 ph 01 493 0595, e-mail

Friends of the Earth gathering in Waterford
Friends of the Earth (FOE) Ireland has a national gathering on the weekend of the 24th to 26th of September in Waterford. It aims will be an enjoyable event with panel discussions, workshops, and plenty of socialising. The program for the event is shaping up to be very interesting. So far we have plans for sessions that include "How people win campaigns", "How to talk to a climate sceptic", "How many postcards does it take to change the law", "Why offsetting is off limits", "Ideas for local action" and "How to lobby your TD". The price of the weekend is €50 for members and €70 for non-members. This price includes food and accommodation in Waterford. FOE is gearing up for a strong campaign this Autumn to achieve historic climate legislation in Ireland and invites you to come to our weekend and find out how you can be part of this pivotal environmental campaign. Friends of the Earth, 9 Upper Mount Street, Dublin 2, ph 01 - 6394652, e-mail and

Irish Centre for Human Rights – Ten years
The Irish Centre for Human Rights in Galway welcomed its first LLM students in September 2000 and is hosting a series of events in 2010 to celebrate ten years of the Centre’s teaching, research and advocacy. The main 10th anniversary event is a major academic conference by the Irish Centre for Human Rights, on the theme of “Forgotten Rights, Forgotten Concepts.” This will encompass a number of original human rights issues across a broad spectrum which the speakers feel have fallen out of favour or been overlooked. The Conference will be held on campus on 19th and 20th November 2010, and will include many distinguished academics and friends of the Irish Centre for Human Rights. The conference fee of €25 includes lunch at the conference and admission to the closing party on Saturday, 20 November. There will be a Gala Banquet on Friday 19th November in the Glenlo Abbey Hotel. Tickets for the Banquet are priced at €50 and available in limited number. Irish Centre for Human Rights,
National University of Ireland, Galway,  phone 091 - 493948, E-mail: and web site.

Development Studies Association Ireland
A Dublin event on 13th September will sees the formal launch of DSA Ireland, which aims to enhance knowledge on international development by encouraging exchange and cooperation among academics, researchers, NGO practitioners and other interested people. There is a full programme and participation is free – all welcome - booking essential but as it is past the booking date contact to see about attending. [Source CGE e-bulletin]

Permaculture in Belfast
The second of two permaculture weekends in Belfast with Philip Allen take place the weekend of 18th and 19th September. This course is educational and fun and suited to everyone desiring positive change. The permaculture concepts can be simple and modest for your own enjoyment or ambitious, complex and adventurous for far reaching ramifications, see It costs costs £190 for the weekend including course materials, accomodation and meals, or cheaper if you don't want to stay over. Contact: Philip Allen, Learning Landscapes NI, ph 028 - 90 716200 or 078 – 72334180.


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