Bossangoa is adjusting to a new era of peace. The town, situated in the north west of Central African Republic, lies 300 kilometers from the capital Bangui, where one year ago today, the Government signed a peace deal with the leaders of 14 armed groups. It was the latest in a succession of peace deals since 2013, but unlike its predecessors, where ceasefires were broken in a matter of months, this deal is making some headway.
When Conciliation Resources was set up 25 years ago, peacebuilding was in its infancy. The term itself had only come into widespread use two years before, and the UN Peacebuilding Commission wouldn’t be established for another 10 years. This was a time when the ideas that continue to guide our organisation today were born. Our conviction that people living in areas of violent conflict must be involved in its resolution. Our belief that committed, two-way partnerships would be the cornerstone of everything we do. And our understanding that through dedicated research, analysis and learning we could constantly improve the process of peace.
"The New Year has begun with our world in turmoil.” Just days into 2020, UN Secretary General António Guterres called for restraint, dialogue and international cooperation as tensions rise around the world. He warned of the terrible human suffering caused by war, and spoke of our common duty to avoid it.
But despite the turbulent start to the new year, there are reasons to be positive about peace in 2020. There are brave, passionate and creative people working around the world and joining forces to prevent conflict and build more peaceful societies. By working collectively, we can all move towards a more peaceful future.
In the Central African Republic, many of today’s young people have grown up knowing only conflict. It shapes their day to day life, and their futures, but they are all too often left out of the processes which try to build peace.
"Enough, to hell with this film!" Tearing up the script, the producer stormed out of the room.
Earlier this year, I met a group of young women in Colombia who had come together to discuss their experiences of working for peace. The group included former combatants, environmentalists, feminist activists, and a police officer who contributed to the disarmament and demobilisation process of the FARC.
The following is a statement from Saferworld, Conciliation Resources, International Alert and Peace Direct concerning a possible merger of the Department for International Development and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
2019 may be coming to an end, but at Conciliation Resources we are marking an important beginning. 25 years ago, Andy Carl and David Lord began Conciliation Resources, with the staunch conviction that people living in areas of violent conflict should be involved in its resolution.
Women Mediators across the Commonwealth (WMC) members met in London this week as part of the first all-member meeting since the inception of the network over a year ago. The women shared their mediation learning and discussed the future development of this international network of mediators, which is hosted by Conciliation Resources.
On Saturday 23 November the people of Bougainville (an autonomous region of Papua New Guinea) started voting in a referendum on Bougainville’s political future. There are two options on offer – independence or greater autonomy. This vote marks a key moment in the Bougainville peace process, but does not mark the end of the process.
The international peacebuilding NGO, Conciliation Resources, and Brussels-based mediation organisation mediatEUr, have decided to recognise the closeness of their missions and come together, combining their objectives and operations.