Long live the Caux dialogue on land and security

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Martin

On the morning of Thursday 11 July, the Caux dialogue on land and security conference came to an end, after five days of stimulating discussions and workshops on ways to improve the urgent environmental issues facing our planet, among which the crucially important one which is desertification, and particularly in the Sahel region of Africa. Martin Frick, Ambassador and German representative to the UN and international organizations closed the session by encouraging people to engage in local action, in the prospect of the future dialogues.

Aimed at summing up the whole of the Caux dialogue 2013 conference, this exclusive plenary recapped most of the points discussed the four previous days, and focused on the human aspect primarily. Organised in an interaction-friendly circle, the audience engaged and participated in a very lively way, around the subjects of land degradation, water management and human security issues. Martin Frick introduced the plenary, and Imam Ashafa opened the session with a moving metaphorical piece around his personal experience in Nigeria. He emphasized climate change, mentioning the Maldives islands: ‘We are sinking’, on the notions of value, through personal change and dematerialization towards action: ‘We need to put tomorrow into our today’.

The Caux dialogue on land and security, the first of its name, was a major success through its organization and management, and benefited from the presence of distinguished guests from various universities, organizations and businesses, naming only a few such as Peter Rundell, Bianca Jagger, Allan Savory, Luc Gnacadja, Martin Frick, Tony Rinaudo, David Addison, Simon Maddrell, Julia Marton-Lefèvre, Dennis Hamro-Drotz, Rattan Lal, Ahmedou Ould Abdallah and many others.

With the highlight of the joint IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) and UNCCD (United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification) agreement signed on 10 July between Luc Gnacadja (Executive Secretary, UNCCD) and Julia Marton-Lefèvre (Director-General, IUCN), the dialogue received great support both from the NGO and International Organisations sector.

The conference organizers encouraged the audience to keep in touch with the Caux dialogue on land and security, for future conferences in the coming years. Finally, Edward Peters, vice-president of Initiatives of Change International, spoke some good words of truth around the overall objectives of the entire Caux experience and thanked the Caux dialogue organisers and their excellent work.

Martin Frick concluded the session by thanking everyone involved in the organization, including moderator Peter Rundell, and also by paying a very special tribute to Algerian diplomat Mohamed Sahnoun, present in the room, whom he mentioned ‘represents a true role model and an inspiration to all willing to take action’.

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