The Khartoum Process held its first thematic meeting on 2017 in Berlin, hosted by Germany one of the Process' five (of ten) European Steering Commitee Members. The meeting, taking place on 18 and 19th May, was opened by Commissioner Grzeski and welcomed experts from across the region on the topics as well as key representatives and experts from the UNHCR, IGAD and the World Bank, amongst others. Uganda also joined the Process for the first time during its inception in the steps to obtaining membership of the Process. For the first time in the Process, the delegates were split into small groups of subtopics under the theme to brainstorm solutions to many of the challenges raised.
The below include some of the concluding remarks of the meeting, communicated by the Chair:
- Protection challenges are high. In many cases, they are not specific to refugees but are more development and environmental challenges to refugees and host societies alike.
- In the future, we will have even more competition for resources due to the demographic developments. What we need is the “whole of society” approach. The key requirement is the political will. We need clarity on policy and political framework.
- We have discussed how durable solutions can be reached and could look like. Key among them is the access to education and livelihood.
- It became equally clear that donor interventions and the international community at large have to always keep the interest of the host communities in mind.
- Several participants also mentioned that we need a stronger engagement of the private sector.
- The issues are currently addressed via several global initiatives. We have to create synergies between these.
- The meeting has helped participants to learn more about what is really needed. This was very useful for the identification of future priorities and the existing gaps in project portfolios.
- The “whole of society” approach is necessary; but it requires new thinking both in the humanitarian and development community.
- Finally, we have to continue our work on finding legal and orderly pathways.