2016 Peace and Global Security Workshops

Advancing Human Rights in a Time of Fear

Saturday, Apr 16, 2016, 1:45 pm

Following the attacks in Paris, France implemented and then extended a state of emergency which raised concerns about practices that are a step backwards for human rights norms. This is a pattern seen from attempts to combat Boko Haram to parts of U.S. foreign policy and domestic policy to address apparent threats. This workshop will consider several cases while exploring theological, ethical, and human rights to challenge fear and build a just peace.


  • Nathan Hosler, Church of the Brethren's Office of Public Witness
  • Matt Hawthorne, National Religious Campaign Against Torture

Raising the Voices of those Impacted by U.S. Drone Warfare: An Examination of the Legal, Ethical, and Policy Impacts of Drone Strikes and Endless War

Saturday, Apr 16, 2016, 3:30 pm

As a result of an increasingly militarized U.S. foreign policy, the U.S. drones program is one of the most secretive and expansive programs today resulting in a high number of civilian casualties, which is left unreported and uninvestigated. This workshop will bring together advocates from faith, legal, and human rights backgrounds who share common concerns about the targeted killing program’s lack of transparency, oversight, and high civilian casualties. Panelists will discuss policy recommendations, such as calling for greater transparency of the program and uplifting the voices of civilians impacted by drone strikes.


  • Rita Siemion, Human Rights First
  • Naureen Shah, Amnesty International USA

Moderator: Yasmine Taeb, Friends Committee on National Legislation

A Plan for Peace for All: Need for Afro-Colombian and Indigenous Voices in Colombia’s Peace Process

Sunday, Apr 17, 2016, 2:00 pm

Co-sponsored by the Latin America & the Caribbean and Peace and Global Security Workshop Areas

This year Colombia stands on the brink of reaching peace accords to end a fifty-year war that has left 220,000 dead. Yet for peace to truly be lasting and sustainable, Colombia’s leaders and the international community accompanying the process must recognize and listen to the voices of all victims of the conflict, particularly Afro-Colombian and indigenous communities that have suffered disproportionately from abuses, violence, and forced displacement. While Plan Colombia is touted as a huge success in the United States, for these communities it is synonymous with war, extrajudicial killings, and human and land rights violations. Speakers will discuss the particular concerns of Afro-Colombian and indigenous communities and how the international faith and civil society community can support the way forward toward lasting peace.


  • Father Sterlin Lodono, Pastoral Afro-Colombiana, Diocesis de Yuto and CONPA
  • Yvonne Caicendo, Foro-Inter Etnico Solidaridad Choco (FISCH) and CONPA
  • Marino Cordoba, AFRODES and CONPA

Sponsors: CONPA, Washington Office on Latin America, Latin America Working Group Education Fund, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

The Crisis in Syria and Iraq: How Do We Achieve a Diplomatic Solution?

Sunday, Apr 17, 2016, 2:00 pm

Co-Sponsored by the Middle East and Peace & Global Security Workshop Areas

Since the start of the civil war in Syria in 2011, over 200,000 people have died at the hands of the Assad regime, foreign governments, and non-state violent groups. While a political solution was successful in dismantling Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal, diplomatic efforts to end the war have yet to secure a ceasefire. Bringing in experts of the region and attention to the refugee crisis, this workshop will think through how the Vienna process and broader nonviolent, reconciliation, and just peace efforts can be most successful in transforming the conflict.


  • Ibrahim Al-Assil, Middle East Institute
  • Yasmine Taeb, Friends Committee on National Legislation.

Moderator: Eli McCarthy, Conference of Major Superiors of Men.

Contributing Sponsors & Partner Organizations