Remembering our Friend Walther Leisler Kiep

“I am left with great confidence.”
Walther Leisler Kiep, January 5, 1926
May 9, 2016

The Board of Directors and the members of Global Bridges are united in deep sadness over the death of Walther Leisler Kiep. Saying farewell to the founding father of our organization leaves us with painful wounds and deep gaps that will be hard to fill.

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China, October 26 – 2015

Far from the booming metropolises of Shanghai and Hong Kong, it is easy to witness the rebirth of a world power caught between traditional structures and new prosperity. A Chinese conversation partner casually pointed out that following decades of unprecedented growth and the increase in pollution, the app he uses to measure fine dust has almost become as important to him as weather reports.


Iran, May 1 – 2015

While high-pressure nuclear negotiations were being carried out with the utmost diplomacy, we experienced a land of extreme diversity and contradiction. Conservatives insist on the status quo of isolation, reformers strive for cultural openness and economic awakening. New perspectives for the recognition of the role women play in society are being formed. We were addressed with curiosity on the streets – and in well-spoken English. As a longstanding politician, Frankfurt’s former mayor Petra Roth swiftly wins sympathy among young female Iranians.


Northern Iraq, May 28 — 2014

How does one survive in a politically unstable region? Shortly before the outbreak of IS hostilities against the Kurds, the Young Leaders experienced how the will to survive and modern economic thought prevail in one of the oldest cities in the world. In our everyday encounters we experienced the pursuit of a progressive civil society.


Israel, April 30 – 2014

How can a conflict between two sides that claim history for themselves be resolved fairly? The religious, historical and material context of the tensions between Israelis and Palestinians can only be understood first-hand by going there, observing and listening. Global Bridges engaged in intensive discussions with negotiators from both sides. And just how fragile the status quo is between Israelis and Palestinians was demonstrated a few weeks after the trip, when violence broke out again, claiming the lives of countless victims.