The European Institute of Peace (EIP) hosted 20 young political leaders to participate in a mediation simulation and a spirited debate on democratisation, good governance, inclusion and political transitions.

The delegates from Libya, Algeria, Mauritania, Tunisia and Morocco (including parliamentarians, political party representatives, civil society and business leaders) were invited to Brussels by the European Parliament’s Mediation Support Service to attend seminars and trainings on how to build democracy and sustainable peace.

EIP’s team helped maneuver provocative topics on non-violent solutions to unconstitutional changes of power; election violence; winner-takes-all mentality; and on dealing with inclusion of civil society. In the afternoon, delegates engaged in a mediation simulation exercise in which they had to negotiate a peace deal in a tense political environment in the aftermath of a terrorist attack. In the scenario, mediators from the African Union led complex negotiations between the government and rebel forces while taking into account concerns voiced by civil society actors, businesses and international observers.

EIP’s exercise was designed to get the group thinking about political issues from different levels and perspectives. It also served to expose participants to a snapshot of dialogue and mediation techniques on how to prevent and resolve conflict.

This was the second event of its kind: in April 2015, EIP hosted 12 young political leaders from Sudan to reflect on issues of political pluralism, tolerance of others, peaceful consensus building, reconciliation and conflict resolution. The EIP session focussed on creating a forum for developing a culture of peace and what it could mean for the future of Sudan.