What is Track II Diplomacy?
Track II Diplomacy is a diplomatic approach that goes beyond traditional non-governmental efforts. This term gains meaning when compared to “Track I Diplomacy.” While Track I Diplomacy refers to the official intergovernmental diplomatic process, Track II Diplomacy denotes unofficial diplomatic efforts conducted without the presence of state representatives.
Track II Diplomacy is often used in situations where Track I Diplomacy proves inadequate, such as in times of war, conflict, disputes, or complex political issues. These Track II Diplomacy initiatives are carried out by civil society, academics, former government officials, experts, and other independent actors to contribute to or support diplomatic negotiations at the official level.
The aim of such diplomatic efforts is to build trust between parties, understand different perspectives, increase dialogue and understanding, propose peaceful solutions, and enhance the success of official negotiations. Track II Diplomacy initiatives can take place in a more relaxed environment between parties and can be more flexible and long-term.
However, Track II Diplomacy does not replace the role of official negotiations. Instead, it complements and supports formal processes. This type of diplomacy requires a high level of sensitivity and care, and achieving results may take time. Nevertheless, it can provide valuable contributions to conflict resolution and peace processes.