It took the Iraqi army three years to break Daesh/ISIL’s territorial hold of Iraq, which at one point amounted to a third of the country. The war against Daesh/ISIL resulted in large-scale destruction and humanitarian needs on a massive scale. At its peak, over 5 million Iraqis fled their homes and just under half are still waiting to go back.
Many of the major cities formerly held by Daesh/ISIL were completely destroyed as a result of the conflict. One example is Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city, renowned for its rich cultural and historical heritage. Following the liberation of the city in July 2017, the focus is now on rebuilding basic infrastructure so that internally displaced persons can go back to their homes and resume some form of normality. However, the challenges of doing so are turning out to be a lot greater than anyone had expected. The Embassy visited Mosul to observe the work of the UN in the area and to see the challenges of stabilisation in the aftermath of war.

Malin Herwig works as an adviser on conflict prevention at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Regional Hub for the Arab States, based in Amman. She mostly works on preventive measures against violent extremism. Read her story about her work to support peace.

25 years ago, the Foreign Ministers of nations in the Barents region gathered in Kirkenes, Norway, to sign the declaration that is the foundation of the Barents cooperation. Many politicians, officials, local and regional decision makers have since then met in different forums to take action for peace, stability, and regional development to the benefit of the people in the Barents region.

There is an important story about women, peace and security that needs to be told.
We are putting the spotlight on women who have paved the way – the bold and the brave – and we know there are and can be many more of them.
We are pushing for #MoreWomenMorePeace.

There is an important story about women, peace and security that needs to be told.
We are putting the spotlight on women who have paved the way – the bold and the brave – and we know there are and can be many more of them.
We are pushing for #MoreWomenMorePeace

In April 2017, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs (MFA) presented new country reports on human rights, democracy and the rule of law. The reports form part of the Government’s work to promote, prevent and influence developments in these areas. The reports can be read on the Government website. Here, I describe some of the overarching trends that can be identified based on the extensive material contained in the reports.

The theme of the UN Environment Assembly in December this year is ‘Beat Pollution’, and one of the issues to be discussed is how to prevent environmental exploitation in war and armed conflict. Marie Jacobsson, who is Ambassador at the Department for International Law, Human Rights and Treaty Law, is engaged in this issue.

Sexual and gender-based violence is used as a tactic of terrorism by a range of today’s violent extremist groups. This makes it essential to address violence against women and girls as an integrated part in countering and preventing violent extremism. This is key to Sweden’s feminist foreign policy.

There is an important story about women, peace and security that needs to be told.We are putting the spotlight on women who have paved the way – the bold and the brave – and we know there are and can be many more of them. We are pushing for #MoreWomenMorePeace.

In 1989, the UN adopted its convention on the rights of the child, which comprises 54 articles on human rights for children. These may be applied to how children may be treated in connection with conflicts, since it addresses, for example, the right to protection when displaced and citizenship. To highlight this, we have met Gufran Al-Nadaf, Sweden’s Ambassador for Children and Armed Conflict, to talk about the challenges, the feeling of inadequacy and Sweden’s priorities.