HE Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani affirmed that Qatar is working to encourage youth participation in all stages of peace paths, including decision-making.

This came in the inaugural speech of the State of Qatar, delivered on Thursday by the FM before the High-Level Global Conference on Youth-Inclusive Peace Processes, which is held virtually from January 19-21.

HE Sheikh Mohammed expressed happiness at opening the conference, which is co-hosted by Qatar, Colombia, Finland, and the United Nations, and is co-organised by the Office of the Secretary Generals Envoy on Youth (OSGEY), the Education Above All (EAA), and Search for Common Ground (SFCG), in collaboration with the United Nations Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs (DPPA/PBSO), the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), and the United Network of Young Peacebuilders (UNOY).

The FM praised the pioneering vision and advocate for the UN Sustainable Development Goals of Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of Education Above All Foundation, stressing that Her Highness has been working tirelessly to promote youth empowerment in conflict prevention and peacebuilding. His Excellency also noted the EAA's effective role in this regard.

He pointed out that the State of Qatar is working to encourage youth participation in all stages of peace paths, including decision-making, noting that the Youth Affairs Department of the Ministry of Sports and Youth has been directed to formulate the first national strategy for youth in Qatar. HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs said that the strategy, which was formulated in consultation with Qatari youth, constitutes a declaration of a common national vision that defines the needs and priorities of Qatari youth.

He pointed out that the First International Symposium on Youth Participation, which was held in Helsinki in March 2019, resulted in the launch of the first global policy paper on youth participation in peace tracks.

HE Sheikh Mohammed expressed confidence that the conference will follow this path in reaching joint political commitments to advance the global youth, peace, and security agenda and provide tangible solutions to comprehensive sustainable operations for youth around the world.

Also, he expressed happiness that the conference will launch international guidelines to advance the global youth, peace, and security agenda and a five-year strategy to promote comprehensive peace paths for youth, which will be implemented at the national level.

Qatar worked with other partners to prepare and co-ordinate to hold this conference to ensure the participation of the largest possible number of young men and women from the conflict countries, in addition to the broad participation of countries that play the role of mediator in peace processes. This conference comes as a continuation of the international efforts aimed at activating the role of youth in the peace paths.

Qatar will play a key role in communicating with the President of the General Assembly and the UN Secretary-General regarding the dissemination of the outcomes of the conference to member states, which are the fruit of efforts and consultations with governments, civil society institutions, non-governmental organisations and youth from various countries.

Qatar attaches great importance to the issue of empowering young people and involving them in the development process, whether at the national, regional, or international levels, as they are leaders and hope for the future.

Based on the firm belief of the State in the positive energy of youth and their ability to make positive change in all areas, including maintaining international peace and security, it has spared no effort to develop policies and take measures that would enhance the contribution of young people to development and peace-building efforts. Through its relentless efforts in the field of mediation at the international level, the State of Qatar realised the importance of the role of young men and women in promoting and consolidating these efforts, leading to the desired goal of achieving lasting peace between the conflicting parties.

Qatar stresses the importance of Security Council resolutions urging member states to seriously consider ways to increase the comprehensive representation of youth in decision-making at all levels, including strengthening mechanisms for the meaningful participation of youth in peace processes and conflict resolution, calling on representatives of states and governments to recognise their official efforts in the ongoing peace negotiations.

In March 2019, Qatar actively participated in organising the First International Symposium on Youth Participation in peace tracks, which was held in Helsinki, as part of the implementation of state policies in the field of international cooperation, especially in the field of supporting the implementation of the youth, peace and security agenda in accordance with Security Council resolution 2,250 of 2015.

This participation came out of Qatar's commitment and keenness to implement the youth, peace, and security agenda in its development and humanitarian plans and programs, as well as its mediation efforts to resolve disputes in many regions of the world.

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