Think tank sets up HQ in Bahrain
Manama, April 6, 2014
A regional office for a major think tank opened in Bahrain last night.
The opening of New York-based International Peace Institute's (IPI) regional headquarters was attended by its president Terje Rod-Larsen, Capital Governor Shaikh Hisham bin Abdulrahman Al Khalifa, Minister of State for Information Affairs and the government's official spokeswoman Sameera Rajab, ambassadors and dignitaries.
IPI Middle East regional office director Maha Abu Baker Bahamdoun told the GDN the think tank was honoured to set up its regional office in Bahrain, reported the Gulf Daily News (GDN), our sister publication.
"We're honoured and privileged to get support from everyone to do this," she said.
"Today marks the opening of IPI and it's not the opening of yet another think tank.
"We hope that IPI distinguishes itself by truly listening to people and learning from everyone.
"Our doors are open to everyone.
"We are in the region and want to be close to the local and regional perspective."
She said the importance of setting up an office in the region is due to timing.
"The timing is quite critical because there are many shifts that are occurring at the political, social and economic level," Ms Bahamdoun said.
"Not just because of the Arab Spring, before that we had the economic crisis and that had its ramifications.
"Some of the changes happened with the economic crisis and that are now taking shape and form.
"This is the time for reflection and openness.
"We believe that the Bahraini society is a very open, educated and tolerant society. We couldn't have chosen a better headquarters."
Foreign Minister Shaikh Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa earlier stressed the think tank's role in promoting global peace, settling disputes and providing effective international responses to emerging tensions in conflict zones, as he signed an agreement to open the office in Bahrain.
IPI specialises in multilateral approaches to peace and security issues, working closely with the Secretariat and members of the UN. Its primary objective is to promote effective international responses to new and emerging issues and crises through research, analysis and policy development. - TradeArabia News Service