Reimaging Inclusive Security in Peace Processes: LGB&T Perspectives

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Key findings:

  • In deeply divided societies, political negotiations and accords to address violent conflict often address historical grievances surrounding ethno-nationalist, political, social and cultural inequalities. Grievances relating to other identities are often side-lined as residual matters in terms of making and building peace.
  • The level of insecurity experienced by sexual and gender minorities is impacted directly by both ethno-nationalism and overt political conflict. Inclusive approaches to conflict transformation will include analysis and practices which seek to affect the security of multiple identity groups, including Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual and Transgender (LGB&T) communities.
  • By moving beyond statist interpretations of security, analysts and policymakers create conceptual space to challenge the persistence of ethno-sexual and ethno-gender insecurities in transitional societies.
  • Framing LGB&T security within a universal human rights agenda underscores LGB&T people’s fundamental right to security. However, human rights approaches can underplay the relationship between LGB&T insecurities and the legacies of conflict. Contextualising LGB&T insecurities within a conflict framework can inform analytical and policy approaches to reimagining what the human right to security means in transitioning societies.
  • Statist interpretations of security limit understandings of the sources of insecurity in conflict-affected states. LGB&T articulations of insecurity should guide both policy and practice in transitional societies; advocacy groups should have access to policymakers and a broad range of LGB&T groups should be appropriately resourced to address all aspects of their constituencies’ security needs during peacebuilding.
  • LGB&T insecurity cannot be addressed solely through policy and legal change. Civil society organisations can play a role in preserving forms of LGB&T insecurity during conflict; consequently, they can play a central role in reducing forms of LGB&T insecurity during the conflict transformational period.
  • Policing reform in transitional societies must fully address LGB&T security. If historically low-levels of confidence and trust between sexual and gender minorities pertain, and the police are a key institution for reform, re-building trust with a range of constituencies, including LGB&T constituencies must be addressed through institutional change and monitoring.
  • The media have a duty to move beyond debates concerning the ‘morality’ of legal changes designed to dismantle the sexual and gender inequalities of the past. The media can play an important role in terms of exposing the effects of the
    persistence of those historical inequalities on the security of LGB&T people in
    conflict-affected states.

Keywords: Gender, LGB&T, Inclusion, Peace Processes

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