Tal av biståndsminister Isabella Lövin vid Internationella Dialogens sidoevent under World Humanitarian Summit

Inledningstal av biståndsminister Isabella Lövin vid Internationella Dialogens sidoevent under World Humanitarian Summit, Istanbul 23 maj, 2016.

Talet hölls på engelska. Det talade ordet gäller.

Excellencies, Madam Moderator, Colleagues, Ladies and Gentlemen.

You have probably heard the numbers many times at this summit, but I think they deserve to be repeated once again. 125 million people are in need of humanitarian support. If it would be a country it would be the 11th biggest in the world. 80% of these are suffering because of man-made wars & conflicts. The amount is twelve times greater than fifteen years ago, still the funding gap is 15 billion dollars.

As Sweden's minister of development I have visited quite a few refugee camps across the world. From Gambella to Dadaab and Tindouf. One single fact, one insight, has been more painful to grasp then others. That there seems to be no hope for a future outside the camp for the people living there. Generation after generation have faced or will have to face this destiny, if we - the international community - don't bring our act together. The average length of conflict-induced displacement is an astonishing 17 years. To many, displacement has become a life sentence.

This is not only a matter of wasted lives and dreams. This is not only a matter of dignity. It might also be a ticking bomb. When society can't bring hope for a better future, people tend to look for alternatives. We see the results in terms of terrorist organisations recruiting young people by offering false promises to people in despair.

So we have gathered here in Istanbul at a critical moment.

Although many humanitarian appeals remain unanswered, the issue of increasing humanitarian needs is not only a financial problem. It is political.

The UN Secretary General calls in "One Humanity" for five core responsibilities critical to deliver better for humanity.

  1. To precent and to end conflicts
  2. To uphold the norms that safeguard humanity
  3. Leave no-one behind
  4. Deliver and finance aid differently and
  5. To invest in humanity

These have to be transformed into political action. We must mobilize the political will to reach these ambitious goals. We need to marshal resources to end fragility and violent conflicts.

The best way to deal with growing humanitarian needs is to address their root causes. In fragile and conflict affected situations, institutions are weak or dysfunctional and less able to withstand shocks. Whether in the form of health epidemics (as we have seen in Western Africa during the ebola crisis), whether in the form of natural disasters (as in Nepal or Bangladesh which I recently visited) or terrorist attacks (as countries like Somalia and Afghanistan now suffer from).

What begins as a short-term humanitarian emergency often turns into a long-term development challenge.

Fragile states can soon become conflict affected states unless we act now. And which the next fragile states are we must be better at identifying.

In April the members of the International Dialogue on Peacebuilding and Statebuilding adopted the Stockholm Declaration on Addressing Fragility and Building Peace in a Changing World.

If we are to reverse the trend of an increase of protracted humanitarian crises, we need to have a long-term perspective. The Stockholm Declaration emphasizes that we need to focus more on prevention by addressing the root causes and the drivers of fragility and conflict. We need to work together, and we need to do it horizontally rather than vertically.

The Stockholm declaration commits members of the International Dialogue to bridge the divide between humanitarian and development actors.

It calls for collective outcomes that supports the "Leave no-one behind" ambition. And it strives for the implementation of Agenda 2030 in fragile and conflict affected contexts.

The International Dialogue can be a platform for creating closer working collaboration. Together we can achieve collective outcomes and scaling up innovation at country levels.

The International Dialogue and two of its members, Germany and UNDP, have organized this event today to answer the UN Secretary General's call.

Therefore, we have three requests for all of you here today.

  1. That you share innovations on how we can collaborate productively when working with the humanitarian and development communities.
  2. That you explore opportunities for joint analysis and how to work more effectively and inclusively with national and local governments and communities.
  3. And last but not the least, that you explore how we can work on implementing the global goals in fragile environments.

I encourage you, as the chair of the International Dialogue to see how this closer partnership should translate in practice!