APN General Manager Mariam Al Jaajaa was elected to represent West Asia in the Coordinating Committee of the Civil Society Mechanism (CSM) for the second term 2017-2019, and was accordingly invited to take part in the Committee’s meetings on the 5-6th of October and in the CSM Open Forum that followed on the 7-8th of October 2017.
The Coordinating Committee held the meeting to evaluate its achievements of 2017, to discuss its work plan for the upcoming year, and to prepare for the 44th session of the Committee on World Food Security. The Committee also set up a new framework for electing its Advisory Group, such that the previous committee predominantly consisted of representatives from developed countries, with the absence of the Arab region and the Asian continent. APN and its partners have pushed for the past two years for the adoption of geographical balance and giving priority for those representing areas affected by food insecurity. As a result, this year saw the election of 10 people, two of whom are from Asia: Mariam Al Jaajaa from APN, and Azra Saeed from Pakistan.
The CSM Open Forum followed the meeting of the Coordinating Committee, and saw the attendance of hundreds of civil society organizations and networks discussing new strategies that should be used in the upcoming CFS meetings on topics including: global food crises, post-millennial goals, nutrition, forest sustainability, and monitoring committee decisions. Al Jaajaa gave a speech addressing civil society organizations on “Responding to Famines and Food Crises and their Root Causes”.