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Meeting at 12 noon at St Mary’s Church, open to all. See map at the bottom of the page for location. Martin Barber OBE will talk about the current refugee crisis.
An opportunity to get beyond the slogans and headlines and hear about the current refugee crisis from someone who understands the situation from the inside.
Martin Barber was a senior UN official and has extensive experience in humanitarian affairs and peace operations – both at UN Headquarters and in the field. He served as Director of the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) at UN Headquarters in New York from 2000 until his retirement from the UN in 2005. Previously, he was Chief of Policy Development and Advocacy in the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). From 1996 to 1998, he was Deputy Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General in the UN Mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina (UNMIBH), Sarajevo. From 1989 to 1996, he worked with the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Assistance to Afghanistan (UNOCHA) in Islamabad, Pakistan, serving as UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Afghanistan in 1995-96. From 1975 to 1982 he served with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Laos and Thailand. Between 1982 and 1989, he was Director of the British Refugee Council, London. From 2010 to 2013, he served as Senior Adviser in the Office for the Coordination of Foreign Aid in the Government of the United Arab Emirates.
Barber is now a consultant and analyst working on humanitarian issues. He holds a doctorate in South-East Asian Sociology from the University of Hull and is an Honorary Fellow of the University of Edinburgh. In 2006, he was made an OBE “for services to de-mining”. In 2014 he wrote Blinded by Humanity: Inside the UN’s Humanitarian Operations, which documents his experiences within the UN.