African Youth Initiative Network
Victor Ochen is the founder and executive director of the African Youth Initiative Network (AYINET). Born in the north of Uganda, he has spent most of his youth as a refugee in the camps and grew up in the midst of violent conflicts. Challenged by the hardships of war and poverty, Ochen formed a Peace Club and led the recruitment campaign of the anti-child soldiers in the midst of the war in Northern Uganda. He grew up to become one of the most important figures in Africa, a key figure when it comes to fighting for human rights and justice. The magazine Forbes named Ochen in 2015 one of the 10 most powerful men in Africa, and Archbishop Desmond Tutu confirmed that: "my heart swells with joy when I see Ochen, he is the new hope for Africa". In 2015, he was the youngest African participant ever nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.
Frans de Waal
Biologist and primatologist
Frans de Waal is an American-Dutch biologist and one of the world's best-known experts in the field of monkey behavior. He likes to write about remarkable animal behavior, and is convinced that people have more in common with their hairy nephews and nieces than they think. Bestsellers of Frans de Waal include Peacemaking Among Primates, De Bonobo and the Atheist, Chimpanzee Politics, Our Inner Ape, and A Time for Empathy. His comparisons between the behavior of humans and other animal species have made him world-famous. TIME magazine named him one of the 100 most influential people and he was a guest at the Ducht television programs Zomergasten and Collegetour.
Thana Faroq is a documentary photographer and storyteller from Yemen, based in The Hague. In 2016 she received Break the Silence scholarship for an M.A. in documentary photography and photojournalism at the University of Westminster in London. She makes personal reports about subjects such as memory, boundaries and violence. She focuses on 'collaborative storytelling' to tell personal anecdotes about migration. Earlier Thana worked with several international NGOs in Yemen to tell stories about displaced women and children, to show the suffering and the forgotten crisis in the city. Her work has appeared in several publications including Aljazeera, World Press Photo, BBC, Huffington Post, CNN. Thana is currently a fellow artist at the One Society Foundation NY.
Monika Sie Dhian Ho
General director of the Clingendael Institute
Monika Sie Dhian Ho is general director of the Clingendael Institute. Before joining Clingendael, Monika was director of the Wiardi Beckman Stichting (WB Foundation), a social-democratic scientific bureau. She lectures at the Netherlands School of Public Administration and is vice president of the European Integration Committee of the Advisory Council on International Affairs (AIV).
Monika studied and later lectured on political science at the Erasmus University Rotterdam as well as teaching International Relations and International Political Economy at Leiden University. At the Scientific Council for Government Policy, she worked as a researcher and project manager.
Director of Damaan Humanitarian Organization
Mohammad Kanfash has been in the Netherlands since August 2015 and is the founder and director of Damaan Humanitarian Organization, a Dutch-Syrian NGO working on health, education, food security, water supply, illiteracy and promoting dialogue. In the besieged areas around Damascus, and now also in the north of the country, the Damaan team has already assisted 52.000 patients and provided meals and clean water to hundreds of thousands of people. The organization also helped to set up various self-reliance programs for the benefit of many families in the Damascus areas. Mohammad is interested in Syrian affairs and is politically active in Syria and the Netherlands. As a speaker, he commented on developments in the country during events including the UVA, Leiden University, The Night of Dictatorship and the Humanity House. Mohammad was a guest on various Dutch TV and radio programs including De Nieuwe Maan, Brandpunt + and NOS news. He is also an elected board member of the Syrian Committee, a platform for Syrian activists in Syria. His professional experience includes 10 years at the UN refugee agency; mainly in the protection unit, in Syria, Egypt and the Netherlands.
Karel van Oosterom
Diplomat and representative at United Nations
Karel Jan Gustaaf van Oosterom is a Dutch diplomat. Since 2013 he has been the permanent representative at the United Nations and from that position on, he represents the Netherlands in the Security Council in 2018.
Hariwa Negisa Adil
Equal Rights Officer
Hariwa Negisa Adil is a human rights advocate with an LL.M. in Public International Law. After working in Greece in the refugee response she returned to the Netherlands to work as an equal rights officer. She has spent most of her life in Europe but remains strongly connected with Afghanistan.
Major-General Richard Oppelaar
Director of Operations at the Ministry of Defence
Richard Oppelaar joined the Royal Netherlands Marine Corps in 1981. Since April 2016, Major General Oppelaar holds the post of Director Joint Operations in The Hague. In this position he is responsible for military operations all over the world.
Deputy Mayor and The Hague's alderman for Education, Knowledge Economy and International Affairs.
Deputy Mayor Saskia Bruines is The Hague's alderman for Education, Knowledge Economy and International Affairs.