Civil Society, Conflict Transformation, and Peace Building – a Christian Aid Ireland Learning Paper

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Abstract: Tackling Violence and Building Peace” became a strategic priority for Christian Aid globally in 2012. Violence is a prime agent of poverty, capable of wiping out years of development and destroying thriving societies. This learning paper draws on the experience and expertise of Christian Aid’s partners in Angola, Colombia, Sierra Leone, Zimbabwe, Central America, Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory (IOPT), Democratic Republic of Congo, Myanmar, and Pakistan. These countries are all affected by unequal power dynamics and failures of governance which stem from conflict (current or past), state fragility, corruption, and serious deficits in the rule of law that are the root causes of conflict. In this paper, we identify some of the lessons learned and basic principles for Christian Aid country programmes to contribute to conflict transformation. The main methodology for this learning was a conference organised by Christian Aid Ireland, in partnership with the Transitional Justice Institute in Ulster University in November 2014. Key approaches and areas of change that Christian Aid partners work on are identified in the paper.

Keywords: Christian Aid Ireland; Poverty; Development; State Fragility; Governance; Corruption; Conflict Transformation

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