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ICG seeks India's views on global issues

New Delhi,Diplomacy,Indo-Pak/Pakistan, Fri, 05 Oct 2012 IANS

New Delhi, Oct 5 (IANS) Against the backdrop of the dramatic shift of power from the West to the rest and India's rising global stature, the head of the International Crisis Group (ICG), a leading global think tank, is in India to seek Indian perspectives on key international issues.

The Indian Council of World Affairs (ICWA), the think tank of the Ministry of External Affairs, organized an interaction with Louise Arbour, the president and CEO of the ICG and a former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Thursday evening. At least half a dozen retired diplomats, domain experts and journalists engaged in discussions with Arbour.

"She is convinced about fundamental changes to the power balance in today's world," said Rajiv Bhatia, director-general of the ICWA, who chaired the dialogue.

Arbour spoke about 'peace and security in a changing world," and provided insights into pressing global and regional issues, including the situation in Afghanistan, China's recent actions in South China Sea and the threat perception felt by some East Asian nations, and the post-Arab Spring situation in the Middle East and North Africa.

Arbour, a former justice of the Supreme Court of Canada, believes that while "war may be on the retreat, the overall decline in war is due not to fewer conflicts starting, but to more ending." Arbour boasts a formidable resume and had served as a chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda.

Over the years, the ICG, headquartered in Brussels, has carved a niche for itself as an international, independent and non-profit NGO whose reports shape opinions and perceptions of the governments and the international ruling elite.

"ICG is famous for its three-fold role i.e. conducting field research, crafting policy prescriptions and analysis, and conducting high-level advocacy. On a personal note, I should mention that as a student of developments in Africa and Southeast Asia, I have gained much from ICG products," said Bhatia.

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