Lessons of peace and reconciliation: Cambodia and Kashmir
- Ezabir Ali participated in a study visit with a group of 20 others from either side of the line of control in Kashmir
I've just returned from a very informative and interesting visit to Cambodia. I salute the spirit of Cambodians, and I am full of respect for them as they have tried to move beyond pain and suffering.
After this visit I feel energised and more committed to work for reconciliation and peace in the region of Kashmir through a gender perspective.
Learning from the experience of others
Cambodia is an excellent example of resilience and bouncing back. During our time in the country we learnt about its history: its bloody past, the genocide and social dislocation. We also heard at first hand about the various efforts they have made to move beyond the rhetoric of blame game as part of its peace building and the reconciliation process.
I could find many similarities between Kashmir and Cambodia like human sufferings, killings, disappearances, mass graves and other such violations, but also realised that these were quite different stories.
Applying strategies for peace and reconciliation
I would like to take back with me positive lessons from this country like lessons of resilience, strengthening of civil societies and putting an end to bloodshed and war.
I now believe if we dream peace we can achieve it, but what is most important is the will… the commitment.
Cambodians have shown us how they have transformed a “SCAR” to a “STAR" I wish to apply these learnings in my work related to peace and reconciliation, and also in my personal life.
We need to believe in the dream and to work with passion to achieve it.
Ezabir Ali shared these reflections on her return from a group visit to Cambodia in March 2012, facilitated by Conciliation Resources and the Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies.
Interested in other perspectives on the study visit?
- Read Ayesha Saeed's Imagining a vision of the future