On April 19 – 20, HALO joins representatives from global civil society and leaders within the G7 and other invited countries at the Civil Society Summit, coordinated under the UK’s 2021 Presidency.
The summit is an opportunity for civil society and government representatives both within and beyond G7 countries—the UK, France, Germany, Canada, Italy, Japan and the USA—to discuss topics affecting our communities. The conversations HALO takes part in here will be fed into the G7 Leaders Summit later this year in Carbis Bay, Cornwall, 11 – 13 June.
HALO looks forward to discussing with its civil society partners how we can create a greener, more open, more prosperous, and equal future. We believe substantive action on conflict must be prioritised by the G7 for this to be meaningfully realised.
The World Bank estimates that by 2030, up to two-thirds of the world’s extreme poor will live in countries characterised by fragility, conflict, and violence.
Modern conflict is one of the most significant barriers to sustainable development and open societies. Conflict undermines systems and laws. It fragments communities and disrupts health, food and education systems. It curtails freedom and crushes the institutions at the bedrock of open society. Yet invariably, policy makers and aid programmes approach open societies and conflict response as two different things.
Eight out of the eleven lowest ranking states in Transparency International’s 2020 Corruption Perception Index are engaged in protracted conflicts. Six of the same states are ranked in the bottom fifth for global press freedoms by Reporters Without Borders. Five of them are also ranked in the bottom ten of the Economist’s Global Democracy Index.
The trend is clear—conflict crushes open societies.
Today’s conflicts are complex, urbanised and protracted. They result in intense fragility and, if ignored, remain at constant risk of ‘flaring up’. Open societies reduce that risk and break the cycle of endless wars.
HALO joins the Civil Society Summit to push for G7 leaders to not only understand this, but to act on it. We must do more to respond to conflict, support stabilisation and enable recovery to protect those most at risk of harm both today, and in the future.