Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR)

The Peacemakers Paradox: Pursuing Justice in the Shadow of Conflict

Book Launch and Panel Discussion in the AISSR Conflict, Security & Peacebuilding Speaker Series with Priscilla Hayner, Member, UN Standby Team of Senior Mediation Advisors

09May2018 17:00 - 18:30


Expanding from her path-breaking work in Unspeakable Truths, Priscilla Hayner focuses on a new challenge in The Peacemaker’s Paradox: the age-old problem of negotiating peace after a war of atrocities.

Drawing on her first-hand involvement in peace processes and interviews from the frontlines of peace talks, the author recounts many heretofore-untold stories of how justice has been negotiated, with great difficulty, and what this tells us for the future. Those with the most power to stop a war are the least likely to submit to justice for their crimes, but the demand for justice only grows louder.

She also asks how the intervention of an international tribunal, such as the International Criminal Court, changes how a war is fought and the possibility of brokering peace. 

The Peacemaker’s Paradox looks far and wide, from Gaddafi’s Libya to the FARC talks in Colombia, to provide an unparalleled exploration of these thorniest of issues.



  • Priscilla Hayner, Member of the UN Standby Team of Senior Mediation Advisors, and Author of ‘The Peacemakers Paradox’(Routledge 2018)
  • James Stewart, Deputy Prosecutor, International Criminal Court
  • Fleur Ravensbergen, Assistant Director at the Dialogue Advisory Group

About the speakers

  • Priscilla Hayner has worked in the field of transitional justice for twenty-five years, the last ten years focused on the challenge of justice in contexts of peace negotiations. She co-founded the International Center for Transitional Justice in 2001, working as program director and head of its Geneva office.Her first book, Unspeakable Truths: Transitional Justice and the Challenge of Truth Commissions, helped to define that field. She has served as human rights advisor in a number of peace negotiations, from Kenya in 2008 to the recent talks in Colombia.In 2017 she was appointed to the United Nations Standby Team of Senior Mediation Advisors. She is based in New York City.
  • James Stewart is Deputy Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court (ICC) since 2012. Prior to joining the Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) of the ICC, Mr. Stewart worked as General Counsel in the Crown Law Office within the Ministry of the Attorney General, in Toronto. Before this, he served as Senior Trial Attorney in the OTP at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR); as Chief of Prosecutions in the OTP at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY); and as Senior Appeals Counsel and then Chief of the Appeals and Legal Advisory Division in the OTP at the ICTR.
  • Fleur Ravensbergen is the assistant director and co-founder of the Dialogue Advisory Group. Since 2009 she has been working in the field of conflict mediation, initiating and engaging in talks with leaders of armed groups to reduce violence in several conflict situations, including Iraq and the Democratic Republic of Congo. She previously worked for the Dutch Ministry of Development Cooperation, the Dutch Labour Party and a research agency.

The panel will be followed by a reception, and copies of the book will be for sale at a discount.


Please register by sending an email to,and please feel free to share this invitation with your network.

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  • Bushuis/Oost-Indisch Huis

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Published by  AISSR