Dear friends, 

As the first half of 2021 approaches, we are yet again inspired by the number of actions and initiatives developed by the members of the GAAMAC community. From grassroots efforts to global discussions, atrocity prevention actors have been actively engaging civil society leaders, government representatives and international organizations across continents.  

In the past weeks, GAAMAC supported many events with the Chair Silvia Fernández de Gurmendi participating in an event organized by UNESCO to mark the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda and moderating a session on women and grassroots atrocity prevention initiatives organized by the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience (ICSC). Several members of the community also took part in the  FriEnt Peacebuilding Forum to identify the gaps and synergies that need to be addressed to strengthen Europe’s peacebuilding architecture and prevention agenda.  

In his 2021 report on the Responsibility to Protect, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres highlighted national atrocity prevention mechanisms as “instrumental in identifying risks and coordinating response”. He also identified "addressing and countering hate speech" as one of the priority fields of action in the prevention of atrocity crimes.  

“Strengthening national efforts to address hate speech, discrimination and prevent incitement” will precisely be the topic addressed during GAAMAC’s fourth global meeting. We are thrilled to announce that GAAMAC IV will take place from 15 to 18 November 2021. Stay tuned for more information! 

We are honoured to share with you below some of the highlights and latest developments from the important work of this active and resilient community. 



Spotlight on: Justice Jamila Mohammed

We are excited to launch our new #PreventionInAction interview series!

What does it take to establish a successful national mechanism? Justice Jamila Mohammed, Chairperson of the Kenyan National Committee for the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, War Crimes, Crimes Against Humanity and All Forms of Discrimination shares her thoughts and recommendations, as well as her vision for GAAMAC's Africa Working Group as the newly appointed Chair

Read the full interview here


Newly Elected Members of the National Assembly of Côte d'Ivoire to be Sensitized to Atrocity Prevention 

The African Coordination of Human Rights for the Armed Forces (CADHA) with the support of the Raphael Lemkin Center for Africa (CERLA) and GAAMAC will sensitize newly elected deputies and senators on best practices for the establishment and management of national mechanisms for genocide and mass atrocities prevention. This is the second workshop taking place as part of the dissemination campaign of the GAAMAC Africa Working Group Manual in Côte d’Ivoire.

Les nouveaux élus de l’Assemblée nationale de Côte d’Ivoire seront sensibilisés à la prévention des atrocités  

La Coordination Africaine des Droits de l’Homme pour les Armées (CADHA) avec l’appui du Raphael Lemkin Center for Africa (CERLA) et GAAMAC sensibilisera les députés et sénateurs nouvellement élus sur les meilleures pratiques concernant la création et la gestion des mécanismes nationaux pour la prévention des génocides et des atrocités de masse. Il s’agit du deuxième atelier organisé dans le cadre de la campagne de diffusion du manuel conçu par le Groupe de Travail Afrique de GAAMAC.  

Risks and Realities of Mass Atrocities facing Brazil’s Indigenous Peoples 

Brazil’s indigenous peoples face unprecedent challenges in their fight for defending land and water rights and improving the human rights protection of their communities. On April 16, Institute for Genocide and Mass Atrocity Prevention co-hosted a webinar with the Cardozo Law Institute in Holocaust and Human Rights and featured four prominent atrocity prevention actors from civil society and government in Brazil.   

Humans not Numbers 

GAAMAC Partner Impunity Watch has been supporting Syrian victims' organizations gathered around the Truth and Justice Charter to address the detainees and disappeared crisis in Syria. Their latest report calls for the establishment of an effective body to secure the release of detainees, discover the fate of the disappeared and missing and find the remains of those who are no longer alive.   

Creative Multimedia as a Pathway for Peacebuilding 

GAAMAC partner Post-Conflict Research Center (PCRC) produces and promotes projects, content, and works that represent or advocate acts of justice.

Their new documentary ''Cases Of Evil Vlasenica'' addresses the notorious war crimes that took place in the Bosnian city of Vlasenica from 1992-1995, while their latest video production showcases events that marked the 25th Commemoration of the Srebrenica Genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina. 

GAAMAC welcomes the appointment of Ambassador Liberata Mulamula as Tanzania’s Minister of Foreign Affairs 

“On behalf of GAAMAC, I warmly congratulate Ambassador Mulamula for taking on this important role and wish her all the best. We look forward to continuing our excellent collaboration with her and Tanzania”, said Judge Silvia Fernández de Gurmendi, GAAMAC Chair.

Canadian Task Force Against Online Anti-Semitism 

We congratulate our partners from The Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies (MIGS) for being awarded a special grant by the Canadian Department of Heritage’s Anti-Racism Action Program to set up the “Canadian Task Force Against Online Anti-Semitism” for building a strong network of experts and providing practical advice on combating online anti-Semitism.  

Discrimination and Hate Speech Fuel Violence in Sudan 

Over the last six months, GAAMAC partner Rights for Peace organized educational activities for local civil society across Sudan with the aim of strengthening their capacities to identify, monitor and collect reports of hate speech and incitement to violence. The series of events culminated in a new report on “Discrimination and Hate Speech Fuel Violence in Sudan”.  


FriEnt Peacebuilding Forum

In April, GAAMAC supported the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA) in organizing a virtual workshop within the FriEnt Peacebuilding Forum. Moderated by Mô Bleeker, FDFA's Special Envoy for Dealing with the Past and the Prevention of Atrocities, the workshop brought together state and civil society actors engaged in prevention at the local, national, and European level, including GAAMAC partner Post-Conflict Research Center (PCRC).   

Enhancing Cooperation between the UN and Regional Organizations

In a statement submitted by Switzerland during the Open VTC of the UN Security Council on "Enhancing Cooperation between the United Nations and Regional and Subregional Organizations", the Swiss representative to the UN highlighted that “regional organizations have an important role to play in conflict prevention and resolution’’. 

EU Peace Mediation in Times of Uncertainty

For the third year in a row, the European Union Community of Practice on peace mediation hosted a rich exchange with civil society and EU actors in April. The community showed great interest in this event that this year included a special panel on peace and R2P. To learn more about this initiative and access important documents such as the Peace Mediation Guidelines, follow the Mediation support team of the EU.  

From Emergency Relief to Humanitarian Multilateralism

On April 26, in commemoration of the Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day, the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Armenia to the UN hosted a virtual panel discussion examining how the international relief cooperation and especially the Near East Foundation have been addressing the humanitarian consequences of the 1915 Armenian Genocide. 

2021 Genocide Awareness Month

On April 29, GAAMAC partner Post-Conflict Research Center (PCRC) joined the Together We Remember Coalition for the 24-hour global vigil to conclude 2021 Genocide Awareness Month. During the vigil, PCRC organized two sessions, focusing on various aspects of genocide and mass atrocity prevention, dealing with the traumas of the past, and combatting hate speech. 

Time to Decolonise Aid

GAAMAC partner Peace Direct in cooperation with Adeso, the Alliance for Peacebuilding and Women of Color Advancing Peace and Security published a new report with insights and local experiences on the current power dynamics and imbalances that exist within the humanitarian, development and peacebuilding sectors.  


Women, Grassroots Atrocity Prevention and Justice Initiatives

In March, GAAMAC supported its partner the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience (ICSC) in organizing a special event in conjunction with the UN’s Commission on the Status of Women. The event brought together distinguished women professionals and experts working in various community-led transitional justice initiatives in Asia, and Latin America to discuss how peace processes can better address gendered components of conflict and prevent future atrocities. 

Incitement to Discrimination, Hostility and Violence: A Comparative Analysis

On 25 March, OSCE ODIHR organized a side event at the American Society of International Law (ASIL) 2021 Virtual Annual Meeting. This discussion examined the challenge of balancing the right to freedom of expression with the need to protect against online comments that amount to incitement to discrimination, hostility or violence. 

Lessons from the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda

On April 7, GAAMAC joined UNESCO Chair for Genocide Education at the USC Shoah Foundation and the Permanent Delegation of Rwanda to UNESCO and marked the International Day of Reflection on the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda with a virtual panel discussion “From hate speech to genocide: lessons from the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda”. 

Notebook on Human Rights and Hate Speech

‘’Fostering understanding, tolerance and respect for diversity in matters relating to freedom of religion or belief is essential for sustained peace and stability, while combatting incitement to discrimination, hostility or violence.’’ Read the latest notebook on human rights and hate speech by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and the UN Office on Genocide Prevention and the Responsibility to Protect. 

Switzerland and Argentina mention GAAMAC during the 15th Anniversary of the Responsibility to Protect

“As a GAAMAC Steering Group member, Switzerland is involved in the organization of the fourth international conference to be held in November 2021” – Statement of Switzerland during the UN Human Rights Council’s Intersessional Panel Discussion on the 15th Anniversary of the Responsibility to Protect.   

Advancing atrocity prevention: work of the Office on Genocide Prevention and the Responsibility to Protect

In his latest report, the UN Secretary-General emphasized the vital role that regional and subregional organizations can play in preventing and responding to atrocity crimes and highlighted GAAMAC as an example of an international network dedicated to preventing atrocity crimes, including early warning mechanisms. 

The Role of Parliamentarians in Atrocity Prevention

‘’We should look not simply at the tip of the iceberg but at what is below as well in order to understand the root causes of atrocity crimes,’’ said Alice Nderitu, UN Secretary General's Special Advisor on the Prevention of Genocide during a special event on the role of parliamentarians in atrocity prevention, organized by GAAMAC partner The Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies (MIGS).  

Preventing and Responding to Atrocities through UN Mechanisms

On June 3, permanent missions of Australia and Croatia to the United Nations, the Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect and the Asia-Pacific Centre for the Responsibility to Protect organized a virtual launch event of the latest Guidance Document on the ‘’Powers of the UN General Assembly in International Law to Prevent and Respond to Atrocity Crimes’’.


How can European states integrate commitments to R2P in national policy?

GAAMAC partners Protection Approaches and the European Centre for the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) have created a seminar series to explore the relationships between Europe and the principle of R2P. The first seminar, on June 10, will bring together experts in policy, governance, and practice from across the continent to discuss what a European Responsibility to Protect could look like. 

Conflict prevention and the protection of minorities

Join the upcoming Africa-Middle East Regional Forum on “Conflict prevention and the protection of the human rights of minorities” organized by the UN Special Rapporteur on Minority Issues, Tom Lantos Institute on June 15 - 16 in collaboration with GAAMAC. The Forum is open to states, intergovernmental organizations, human rights institutions and civil society organizations specializing in minority issues.  

Human Rights in the Digital Age

GAAMAC is proud to support #RightsCity conference on human rights and technology. Starting on June 15, a consortium of educational institutions and diplomatic representations in Canada under the patronage of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO, will engage in a four-day event featuring global experts working at the intersection of technology and human rights. 

The current situation in Myanmar: Implications for the Rohingya

On June 15, join GAAMAC Steering Group Member Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect (GCR2P) along with permanent missions of Bangladesh, Canada, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey to the UN for a high-level discussion the current situation in Myanmar and the implications for the Rohingya.

Local Ownership in Peace Processes

Are you a local activist, changemaker, organizer, healer, or peacebuilder? Then join Principles for Peace and Peace Direct in a one-day conversation on ‘Local Ownership in Peace Processes' on June 22 discussing how to better structure, sequence and build more inclusive peace processes around the world. 

Global Youth Ambassadors Program

GAAMAC partner Peace for Humanity is inviting youth ages 18-35 to join their Global Youth Ambassadors Program and receive support to create national campaigns in the area of law, human rights, peace and climate change and become part of their global youth community. Apply here before June 30! 

Intervention & R2P: Past, Present, & Futures

The Global Responsibility to Protect journal, Centre for Grand Strategy at King’s College London, and Centre for Geopolitics at the University of Cambridge are organizing a two-day online symposium this September to discuss the past, present, and future(s) of intervention for humanitarian purposes. Follow the Centre for Geopolitics to find out more!  

Countering impunity in Ukraine

Learn more about the international crimes committed during the Maidan events and the situation in occupied Crimea and eastern Ukraine by joining some of the webinars and public events GAAMAC partner Platform for Peace and Humanity is organizing with a consortium of academic partners from Ukraine, Poland and the Czech Republic.  


Human Rights Guide to Sustainable Recovery
UN Guidance on Preventing Atrocities
Report of the Secretary-General
Notebook on Human Rights and Hate Speech
More atrocity prevention resources
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