Currently viewing the category: "Peace and Security"

The most succinct document of Sudan’s Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) is Chapter VI,11. This paper is based on existing literature and the personal experience of the author, who was involved in the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) negotiations as an informal advisor and an external advocate (through the organisation Justice Africa), and in the Darfur Peace Agreement (DPA) talks and the post-referendum talks as a member of the African Union (AU) mediation teams. For a compendium of the relevant documents, see World Peace Foundation, ‘Sudan Peace Archive’.‘Security Arrangements’. Republic of Sudan and SPLM/A, ‘Comprehensive Peace Agreement’. Signed in Naivasha, Kenya, on 25 September 2003, it runs to a little more than three pages – by far the shortest of the protocols and annexures that comprise the CPA. Nowhere is security sector reform (SSR) mentioned by name. For the Government of Sudan (GoS), the central issue is resolved in Paragraph 7(a), which states: ‘No armed group allied to either party shall be allowed to operate outside the two forces’. Ibid., Paragraph 7(a).

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Lasting peace in Somalia remains elusive. Since the collapse of the Siyad Barre government in 1991, Somalia has been the site of both failed interventions and policies of neglect. In 2007, the entry of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) promised a new opportunity to: 1) reduce the threats posed by al-Shabaab; and 2) create an enabling environment in which to consolidate state institutions and promote dialogue and reconciliation among the protagonists. However, the profound obstacles that have bogged down every previous mission remain – AMISOM operates in a fluid political landscape marked by the absence of stable political agreement amongst the main parties to the conflict. The Federal Government of Somalia (FGS) is still new and fragile, and disputes within the Somali polity continue to vex state-building and stabilisation efforts. At the same time, terrorist and insurgent groups including (but not limited to) al-Shabaab have proved pernicious, resolute, and adaptable in their efforts to undermine any progress toward the FGS’s consolidation.

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Promoting security sector reform (SSR) in countries emerging from war is one of the critical missions that the African Union (AU) – following the path laid out by the United Nations (UN), the World Bank, and others – has increasingly assumed in recent years. However, despite two decades of implementation experience, as of 2016 there has been no increase in the tiny number of post-conflict SSR efforts generally considered successful. In another field of endeavour, the approach might have been discarded as unworkable in practice. However, in the absence of any alternative path to the same critical ends, i.e. stable, self-governing states in which citizens enjoy basic security and justice services, do not export security problems (refugees, militants, drug-traffickers, etc.), and do not require continual aid and periodic intervention, SSR remains indispensable.

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The Ethiopian disarmament, demobilisation and reintegration (DDR) programme (1991–1997) is an understudied example of success. The scholarly literature that does address this topic tends to focus solely on technical aspects and impact assessment. The present paper offers a comprehensive review of the rationale, principles, design, implementation and outcomes of the programme in the context of the transition from war to peace. While the paper references some secondary studies, it draws heavily on my own memories and experiences of serving as the head of the programme from its design through to its conclusion.

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The current issue of African Security Review includes several papers that developed out of research from the World Peace Foundation’s African Peace Missions research program, directed by Mulugeta Gebehiwot Berhe. The articles in this issue are open access, and we will be posting key excerpts from each on this blog. Below is an excerpt from […]

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WPF Senior Fellow, Dyan Mazurana just published a review of  Shekhawat, Seema (ed), Female Combatants in Conflict and Peace: Challenging Gender in Violence and Post-Conflict Reintegration  (2015, Palgrave Macmillan) in the Journal of Women, Politics and Policy. Below is an excerpt, the full review is available on the journal’s site.

Female Combatants in Conflict and Peace: […]

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