11th World Peace Forum: fostering global cooperation and dialogue for a secure future
Editor's Note: The writer is a freelance columnist on international affairs based in Karachi, Pakistan. The article reflects the author's opinions and not necessarily the views of Gwadar Pro.
The 11th World Peace Forum (WPF), attended by a large number of local and foreign speakers from various sectors - including academia, government, diplomacy, military and economy - was hosted by Tsinghua University and co-organised by the Chinese People’s Institute of Foreign Affairs from July 1 to 3 in Beijing.
In an era marked by unprecedented global challenges, China has been striving hard to build and support forums that offer innovative approaches to ensure the stability and prosperity of our interconnected world. The Forum has provided an effective platform to showcase China's steadfast commitment to genuine multilateralism, dialogue, and peaceful conflict resolution. Through its proactive engagement, China has spearheaded efforts to foster a harmonious international order that prioritises negotiation and understanding over coercion and confrontation.
The inaugural session of the WPF was held from July 7 to 8, 2012. Since then, the Forum has evolved as a pivotal platform for addressing the pressing challenges of our time, with a particular emphasis on Asia-Pacific security while also encompassing global security concerns.
"We should work together to usher in a new stage of balanced, coordinated, and inclusive global development, promote international development cooperation, improve the well-being of the people of participating countries, and consolidate the social foundation for world peace," said Chinese Vice President Han Zheng during the opening address of the 11th WPF in Beijing.
Prominent statesmen, leaders of international organizations, renowned experts from prestigious think tanks, and executives from multinational corporations converged at the forum to navigate the complexities of global affairs and discuss international security imperatives. Notable speakers included Former Brazilian President Dilma Vana Rousseff, Prof Alka Acharya (India), Prof Athanasios Platias (Greece), Douglas Paal (Carnegie Endowment for International Peace), former Indian foreign secretary Shyam Saran, and Prof. Douzet (France).
In the two-day forum, a long list of diverse and important topics was thoroughly discussed – including the prospects of the Sino-US relations, the potential cooperation between India and China, the new world order in the making, climate change, the challenges of the AI and its implications on the global power equilibrium etc.
While positioned as a non-governmental forum, the World Peace Forum commands significant influence due to its high-level nature and the distinguished participants it attracts. Through engaging in candid conversations and exchanging insights, the WPF 2023 generated innovative solutions to the multifaceted challenges that beset our world today.
With its ambitious aspirations, the forum is fast evolving into a preeminent mechanism for fostering meaningful dialogue concerning international politics and peace.