Today I moderated a live streamed panel discussion, Youth and Religion: Potential Linchpins for Peace. The panel featured an outstanding lineup of youth and religion experts and leaders: Imrana Alhaji Buba, Founder of Youth Coalition Against Terrorism, USIP Generation Change Fellow, and Nigerian youth leader; Aubrey Cox, Senior Program Specialist on Youth at the U.S. Institute of Peace; and Melissa Nozell, Senior Program Specialist on Religion & Inclusive Societies at the U.S. Institute of Peace. The three of them authored the USIP Special Report, Implementing UNSCR 2250: Youth & Religious Actors Engaging for Peace.
Most of the world’s most violent conflicts occur in countries with burgeoning populations of young people. Often these youth are the most vulnerable to the ravages of war. At the same time, more than 80 percent of people globally identify as religious, and their leaders and representatives often work on the front lines to prevent and reduce violent conflict. Yet both groups too often are excluded from formal peace efforts.