“Peace policies are also important in ‘peacetime’ periods, so that local communities become, and remain, a place where common hope and future depend on human connection, trust and cooperation between ordinary people. The challenges of our time are global, and they are having a destructive impact on state systems and democratic politics everywhere. I see it as a threat, but also as an opportunity to shift towards a politics of compassion – to move from dominatory to collaborative power. As a jury member of the UCLG Peace Prize, I am encouraged to see that local communities dedicated to peacebuilding are emerging in different geographical regions and in different cultures.”
Dr. Katarina Kruhonja is a peace activist and one of the founders of the Centre for Peace, Nonviolence and Human Rights NGO in Osijek, Croatia. When war in Croatia started, she was senior specialist in the Nuclear medicine department in Clinical hospital in Osijek. 1996. she joined the post-war peacebuilding efforts in war-torn areas of Eastern Slavonia. Druring this processes she coordinatied multi-ethnic peace teams which were supporting a processes of peaceful integration in Eastern Slavonia. In 1998, Dr. Katarina Kruhonja received the Right Livelihood Award. Between 2004 and 2010, she was involved in national and regional cooperation on dealing with the past processes, particularly monitoring the national war crime trials. Recently Katarina is part of the national team that this year (2021) lauched Nonviolent Politics – Institution for Peace Education and Action.