What is the forecast for the Colombian peace talks following the second phase of negotiations in Oslo? Kristian Herbolzheimer, Director of the Colombia Programme for Conciliation Resources, analyses the public announcement and press conferences made by the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) in Norway, October 2012.
Reflecting on points raised by local people during her recent visit to West Africa, Janet Adama Mohammed explores some of the key topics of concern to Ivorians. What are the issues that risk renewed conflict and how can community-level dialogue help build understanding between neighbours?
It’s 10 years since the last negotiations between the Government of Colombia and FARC. Following the recent announcement of upcoming talks between the two, Kristian Herbolzheimer reflects on this lost decade and some of the challenges that must be confronted now in order for all Colombians to have a stake in future peace.
Societies faced with intractable conflict have to seek ways of breaking out of cycles of violence. For as long as war has existed, amnesties have been used for encouraging armed groups to abandon their fight. Barney Afako examines amnesty in relation to the Lord’s Resistance Army conflict. Where to now that the Amnesty Act has lapsed?
What role can young people play in shaping political culture and addressing social problems? Twenty young politicians and civic activists from the South Caucasus recently travelled to Edinburgh and London with the aim of exploring answers to this question. Mira Sovakar reflects on how they're working to build engagement and mutual trust.
In the face of social concerns within the country and a confessional system that favours entrenched elites, where does ownership of Lebanon's post-war situation and future lie? Capturing a snapshot of Beirut during the launch of issue 24 in our Accord series, Zahbia Yousuf asks how peacebuilders can meaningfully engage with those who have a stake in the status quo, and those who are hungry for change.
Reflecting on the importance of dialogue and vibrant local media in building and sustaining peace, Jenny Norton gives an insight into a series of workshops held with a wide range of Georgians and Abkhaz. What role can journalists and social media play in breaking down conflict barriers?
Emma Leslie shares her reflections on a recent gathering of the Bangsamoro Leadership Assembly in Mindanao. Could developments like the peaceful collaboration of armed forces at the event, there to ensure the safety of several hundred thousand attendees, indicate that the time is ripe for peace in this part of Asia?
The idea of human relations taking centre stage was prominent at a recent meeting of people from the seven different conflict contexts in which Conciliation Resources primarily works. As part of a Governance and Transparency Fund project, dozens of local partners and our staff joined together to exchange experiences and share learning on what works well and what's less effective when it comes to preventing violence and building peace.
In the last few years we have seen new forms of diplomacy emerging with local people playing prominent roles, and a new commitment to talk to groups previously seen as ‘beyond the pale’. The ‘Arab Spring’ has re-awakened the world to the potential of non-violent strategies and people’s power. Our growing field of peacebuilding is contributing to these changes, showing real determination and innovation. In this foreword to our newly published 2010–2011 work review, Executive Director Andy Carl reflects on recent peacebuilding developments and the contribution that Conciliation Resources makes.