ICTJ’s Gender Symposium, held on February 2 to 4, 2019, in Tunis, Tunisia, brought together fearless women leaders working in 8 countries to advance the needs of victims and to bring gender issues to the center of transitional justice processes. What was achieved? What experiences cut across these diverse contexts? Kelli Muddell and Sibley Hawkins reflect on these questions and more in this short podcast. Listen here.
Participants in the Tunis symposium included a youth activist from the Réseau Action Justice et Paix in Côte d’Ivoire, who has been mobilizing young people via radio broadcasts, and the founder of the Nepali organization Story Kitchen, which has been documenting victims’ stories of trauma and resilience. Participants from Kosovo and Tunisia described the opportunities and obstacles to ensuring formal transitional justice processes are gender sensitive, while the participant from Lebanon spoke about her decades of activism that finally led to the passing of a national law to investigate enforced disappearances. Advocates from Sri Lanka, Syria, and other countries considered the challenges of pursuing justice and acknowledgment in highly repressive or extremely violent contexts. Other issues that were discussed were ways to combat societal silence around sexual violence and balancing humanitarian and socioeconomic needs with the goals of truth seeking, justice, and acknowledgment. By design, the symposium was highly participatory, and every participant led at least one session. The sessions were a blend of interactive panels, presentations, small group discussions, and group activities.
PHOTO: Symposium participants engage in a workshop led by Jaya Luintel, from The Story Kitchen in Nepal, by first molding their ideas of justice out of clay and then organizing the pieces together to form a larger "story" of justice (ICTJ).