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    • The Second Belgrade Security Forum Gathered Numerous Experts

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    • Date: 28 September 2012
      Regional cooperation, European integration and fight against overwhelming crisis were key topics of the second Belgrade Security Forum (BSF), held September 20-22 at Hyatt Regency hotel.
      The important role of women in coping with the crisis was highlighted at second BSF
      The important role of women in coping with the crisis was highlighted at second BSF

      The main topic of this year’s BSF was ”Coping with the crisis: challenges to democracy and security“. More than 300 participants attended panels, discussions and closed sessions. Apart from domestic and foreign senior officials, representatives of think-tanks, scientific institutes and civil society were also present, as well as local, regional, and global media.

       

      Numerous security and foreign policy topics in region, Europe and worldwide were critically analyzed in an open discussion. Debates ranged from influence of migrations on the future of European identity, through energy and cyber security, to situation in Syria and China’s new role in the world in crisis. The event drew attention of many domestic and foreign media, which constantly reported about and from the BSF. The European and global security policy dialogue was opened, but the topics of biggest interest were security issues of the Western Balkans.

      Academic event exceeded all expectations
      Academic event exceeded all expectations

      Academic event

      Significantly larger number of young security experts and professionals gathered at this year’s academic event, which preceded the official reception. The discussions centered around the reasons of absence of Security Community in the Western Balkans and potential steps for its formation. The highlight of the academic event was the panel that gathered some of the Western Balkans Security Think Tanks Consortium members. Panelists shared experiences of professional practices in security community building. Special value to debates gave keynote speakers Thierry Balzacq and Dmitar Bechev.

      Increasing number of high-level policymakers and those who influence public opinion on security and foreign policy signifies the importance of the Belgrade Security Forum
      Increasing number of high-level policymakers and those who influence public opinion on security and foreign policy signifies the importance of the Belgrade Security Forum

      Dacic and Vucic

      The second day of the BSF was opened by the Serbian Prime Minister Ivica Dacic. Answering the main topic of Plenary Panel, ”Are the Balkans Finally a Success Story?“ Dacic gave a laconic answer ”Maybe“. The participants of this panel were Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Slovakia Miroslav Lajcak, First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defence of Serbia Aleksandar Vucic, First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and State Secretary for European Affairs Jiri Schneider‚ Deputy Minister and Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bosnia and Herzegovina Ana Trisic-Babic and DCAF Director Amb. Theodor H. Winkler. The key point reached  by the panelists was that there is the need for full contribution in "building new bridges among the countries in the region“ and that situation in Kosovo and Metohija is potentially the greatest source of the instability in Western Balkans.

      Sasa Jankovic and Timothy Edmunds participated in the discussion organised to mark BCSP’s anniversary
      Sasa Jankovic and Timothy Edmunds participated in the discussion organised to mark BCSP’s anniversary

      Celebrating BCSP’s 15th Anniversary

      Room-full of think-tankers and CSO activists participated in an informal discussion on how to use the Serbian experience in addressing challenges that civil society faces within security sector reform in other democratising and post-conflict countries. The debate was organised in honor of the 15th anniversary of BCSP, one of the co-founders and organisers of BSF. Speakers were Director of Global Insecurities Centre at University of Bristol Timothy Edmunds, Ombudsperson of Republic of Serbia Sasa Jankovic, BCSP president of the Executive Board Miroslav Hadzic and BCSP Director Sonja Stojanovic.

      Alaa Murabit‚ from the Voice of Libyan Women
      Alaa Murabit‚ from the Voice of Libyan Women

      Women and Crisis

      The greatest interest on the last day of the BSF was for the panel ”The Consequences of the Crisis for Human Security at Home and Abroad“, where one of the participants was Mary Kaldor‚ the author of the book ”New and Old Wars“. Panelists discussed how the overwhelming crisis is affecting human security, but also concluded that the new challenges at the same time could contribute to promotion of human security.

      The position and role of women during the crisis and conflict situations was topic of the last panel of second BSF. Special attention rose the speech of Alaa Murabit‚ the Founder and President of The Voice of Libyan Women. She pointed to the problems women face across the world where economy wasn’t the main issue in the previous years. She gave an interesting remark that Islam should be considered as a part of the solution to acute problems, from discrimination against women to global economic and democracy crisis.

      Great Contribution of Volunteers

      On the margins of the main events, presentation of documents on women in the police services and security-related topics from the Visegrad point of view was held. Also, the pre-premier of the film The Second Meeting was organised during the BSF as well.

      The organisers of Belgrade Security Forum once again were Belgrade Centre for Security Policy, European Movement in Serbia and Belgrade Fund for Political Excellence. Immeasurable contribution to realisation of all activities during the three days long conference was made by numerous volunteers, most of them being students and university graduates.

      Support as the Evidence of Value

      Strategic partners of the second Belgrade Security Forum were UN WOMEN, Balkan Trust for Democracy, Slovak Atlantic Commission, UNDP/SEESAC.

      The second BSF was realized with the support of: Ministry of the Foreign Affairs Czech Republic, Ministry of the Foreign Affairs Kingdom of Norway, Republic of Austria Federal Ministry for Defence and Sports, Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF), Institute for Sustainable Communities, OSCE Mission to Serbia, Council for Inclusive Governance, NATO PDD, Norwegian Research Council and Holcim. Friends of the BSF were French Embassy to Belgrade and European Movement - Germany, while media partners were RTS, B92, Studio B, Tanjug, FoNet, Novi Magazin, Blic, Politika, Dnevnik, Euractiv.rs.

       

      Numerous local and regional media reported live from the second Belgrade Sesurity Forum
      Numerous local and regional media reported live from the second Belgrade Sesurity Forum
        
      Organising team included 50 members
      Organising team included 50 members

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