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Fragile States

Supported by The Morrell Centre for Toleration which is generously funded by the C and J B Morrell Trust.

The world is seeing the largest mass movement of people since World War II. Refugees and migrants are fleeing their homelands in their thousands, desperately seeking political and economic sanctuary.

What are the causes of such despair? Our Festival Focus Day brings together humanitarian leaders, journalists, educators, security specialists and refugees telling their stories.

The University of York has created the Equal Access Fund to provide scholarships for people seeking asylum or caught up in conflict. Find out more here: Equal Access Fund

The Hub café will be open all day serving hot and cold snacks and drinks. 

Saturday 18 June

11.30am - 1.00pm

Refugees and Migrants: An Escalating Crisis

Our Festival Focus Day begins by examining questions around why so many people are fleeing their homes and the effectiveness of the international response. Speakers include:

  • Gianni Rufini, Director General of Amnesty International Italy
  • Ambassador Tarald Brautaset, Special Envoy for Global Initiatives, Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs 
  • Rafat Al-Akhali, Former Minister of Youth and Sports, Yemen, and Fellow, Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford 
  • Simon Parker, Department of Politics, University of York 
  • Lyse Doucet, Chief International Correspondent for the BBC (Chair)

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2.00pm - 3.30pm

Migration, Migrants and the Media

How are editorial decisions by the media influencing both our response to the refugee crisis and the treatment of refugees when they reach new lands? Speakers include:

  • Daniela Siebeck, Coordinator for Refugee Aid, Germany
  • Lyse Doucet, Chief International Correspondent, BBC
  • Dr David Hickman, Department of TFTV, University of York
  • Alan Travis, The Guardian
  • Charlotte O’Brien, York Law School, University of York 
  • Sultan Barakat, Founding Director of the Post-war Reconstruction and Development Unit, University of York (Chair)

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4.00pm - 5.30pm

Creating a Tolerant Society

Mostafa Salameh, author of Dreams of a Refugee, will present the keynote address. Next, hear from a range of experts including refugees, policy-makers and human rights activists on the experience of refugees and how to create a tolerant society in which differences are respected. Speakers include:

  • Princess Vittoria Alliata, Sicilian humanitarian
  • Tareke Brahne, President, 3 October Lampedusa Memorial Movement 
  • Rachel Aspden, Author of Generation Revolution 
  • Matt Matravers of the University of York (Chair)

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6.00pm - 7.30pm

Building a Secure World for the Future

The refugee crisis and the mass movement of people has highlighted a series of security questions such as people smuggling, radicalisation and terrorist action. What kind of international collaboration is necessary to secure global security?

Rear Admiral Chris Parry, former Director General, Developments, Concepts and Doctrine for the Ministry of Defence, will present the keynote address. This will be followed by a panel discussion. Speakers include:

  • Allan Goodman, Institute of International Education
  • Mary Kaldor, London School of Economics 
  • Sir Vincent Fean, Former Consul-General, Jerusalem 
  • Samu Seitsalo, Centre for International Mobility, Finland 
  • Gianni Rufini of Amnesty International Italy (Chair)

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