What we do

The Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue’s (HD) mission is

to prevent, mitigate and resolve armed conflicts,

through dialogue and mediation.

{:en}Mediation and dialogue are the most effective, and cheapest, tools for preventing and resolving armed conflicts. They are the core business of HD, a globally connected private diplomacy organisation that operates discreetly to help conflict parties settle their differences.{:}{:fr}La médiation et le dialogue constituent les outils les plus efficaces et les moins coûteux pour prévenir et résoudre les conflits armés. Ils sont au cœur de l’action de HD, organisation de diplomatie privée qui, grâce à des réseaux de contacts dans le monde entier, œuvre en toute discrétion pour aider les belligérants à régler leurs différends.{:}

{:en}Providing effective support to mediators can increase the chances of successfully preventing, mitigating and resolving conflicts and of sustaining peace after an agreement is signed. HD offers this support by giving mediators access to the latest conflict resolution expertise and experience.{:}{:fr}Appuyer efficacement le travail des médiateurs permet d’augmenter les chances de prévenir, atténuer et résoudre les conflits, mais aussi de maintenir la paix une fois qu’un accord a été signé. HD soutient les acteurs de la médiation en leur donnant accès à une expertise de pointe ainsi qu’aux expériences les plus récentes en matière de résolution des conflits.{:}

{:en}The Oslo Forum is the leading international network of conflict mediation practitioners. Co-hosted by the Norwegian Government and HD, the Oslo Forum convenes conflict mediators, peacemakers, high-level decision-makers and key peace process actors in a series of informal and discreet retreats.{:}{:fr}Le Forum d’Oslo est une série de rencontres informelles réunissant des médiateurs internationaux, hauts responsables politiques et autres acteurs des processus de paix. Le Forum leur offre un cadre discret et informel pour mener une réflexion sur les pratiques actuelles de la médiation, travailler ensemble au-delà des divergences institutionnelles et de points de vue, et faire progresser leurs négociations.{:}

{:en}As part of its conflict mediation and dialogue activities, and where political dialogue may be difficult or impossible, HD undertakes mediation on a humanitarian basis. Humanitarian mediation enables the parties in conflict to address key issues, such as safe access and protection of civilians, the special needs of women and children, displaced populations and any affected minority groups.{:}{:fr}Dans le cadre de ses activités de médiation, lorsque le dialogue politique se révèle difficile, voire impossible, HD entreprend des initiatives à vocation humanitaire. La médiation humanitaire permet aux belligérants d’aborder des problèmes majeurs tels que la protection des populations civiles et leur accès à l’assistance humanitaire, les besoins particuliers des femmes et des enfants, la question des personnes déplacées et celle des minorités affectées par le conflit.{:}

Where we work

For almost two decades, HD has supported peaceful settlements around the world. The organisation is currently involved in more than 40 dialogue and mediation initiatives in over 25 countries.

Who we are

HD is a Swiss-based private diplomacy organisation

founded on the principles of humanity, impartiality and independence.


{:en}The Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue (HD) is a Swiss-based private diplomacy organisation founded on the principles of humanity, impartiality and independence. Our mission is to help prevent, mitigate, and resolve armed conflict through dialogue and mediation.{:}{:fr}Le Centre pour le dialogue humanitaire (HD) est une organisation de diplomatie privée basée en Suisse et fondée sur les principes d’humanité, d’impartialité et d’indépendance. Sa mission est d’aider à prévenir, atténuer et résoudre les conflits armés par le biais du dialogue et de la médiation.{:}

Foundation Board

{:en}As a Swiss non profit Foundation, HD is supervised by a Board, which serves on a voluntary basis. It sets the mission and the general policy of the Foundation and provides overall supervision of the development and implementation of the organisation’s programme and administration, as managed by the Senior Management Team and staff. {:}{:fr}HD est une fondation suisse à but non lucratif dont les activités sont supervisées par un Conseil de fondation qui définit la mission et la politique générale de l’organisation. Le Conseil supervise également le développement ainsi que l’administration et la mise en œuvre du programme d’activités de l’organisation, tel que conduits par les membres dirigeants et leur équipe.{:}


{:en}HD’s team has grown from a small group of 6 people in 1999 to more than 140 from over 40 different nationalities today, supervised by a 10 member Senior Management Team. The organisation is made up of individuals driven by meaningful objectives who find creative approaches to “getting things done” and are dedicated to making a difference in peace and mediation efforts. {:}{:fr}Composée d’un petit groupe de six personnes en 1999, l’équipe de HD compte aujourd’hui plus de 140 collaborateurs issus de 40 nationalités différentes, qui travaillent sous la supervision de 10 cadres dirigeants. L’organisation regroupe des individus animés par le sens de leur mission, qui recherchent des méthodes créatives pour “faire avancer les choses” et tiennent à contribuer aux efforts de paix et de médiation. {:}

Latest updates

Signing of a commitment to prevent inter-communal conflict in Niger’s Diffa region

On Thursday 12th September 2019, traditional leaders (Kanuri and Fulani) living along the Komadougou River around the Lake Chad Basin area and the oasis basins in Niger’s Diffa region, signed a Commitment which seeks to prevent conflict between their respective communities.

The Commitment is the result of a three-month mediation process initiated by the Nigerien authorities and supported by the Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue (HD). It was signed in Diffa by eighteen traditional leaders as well as the region’s Governor. It aims to end inter-communal tensions which have caused, since 2016, the death of many people, the deterioration of the relations between farmers and herders, as well as the arrest and the detention of several persons.

The tensions, which originate from a struggle for access to natural resources, currently affect eleven municipalities in the Diffa region. Since December 2018, tensions have increased and this has raised concerns that they may escalate into communal conflicts.

Signature d’un engagement pour la prévention des conflits communautaires entre chefs traditionnels de la région de Diffa au Niger

Through this Commitment, the parties have pledged to:

  • Promote peaceful cohabitation and national unity within their respective communities;
  • Ensure that the existing legislation regulating access to shared natural resources is respected;
  • Condemn all acts which may lead to the weakening of the area’s social cohesion;
  • Encourage community leaders to commit themselves to peace through the dissemination of messages of cohesion and appeasement.

“It is important that communities continue the dialogue among themselves to ensure the implementation and the sustainability of this Commitment. Its signing will not put an immediate end to inter-communal violence, but it will provide a sound basis on which the communities and their leaders can rely to settle their disputes in a negotiated manner.” said Abdelkader Sidibé, HD’s Head of Mission for the Sahel.

The mediation process has mobilized Prefects, Mayors, traditional leaders and representatives from state services as well as socio-professional organisations to address the tensions. HD intends to continue its efforts by supporting a follow-up committee which was set up during the signing ceremony.

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This Commitment is part of HD’s ongoing efforts to prevent and resolve inter-communal conflict in Niger. HD began working on the initiative in 2017 in support of Niger’s National Crisis Recovery Strategy in the Diffa region.

HD would like to express its gratitude to the European Union for its support for its activities in the region.


A copy of the Diffa Declaration of Commitment is available here.

For any further enquiries, please send an email to: pr@hdcentre.org.

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