Geneva Peace Week - Adapting peacebuilding to local knowledge

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Genève Centre de Sécurité Police GCSP

2D Chemin Eugène-Rigot

Conference Room 1 (4th Floor)

1211 Genève

Switzerland

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SSR-G, the EU Integrated Approach to conflicts and crises and supporting peacebuilding in transition contexts and the TTRC in The Gambia

About this Event

Adapting peacebuilding to local knowledge

Within the theme of Global Perspectives on Peacekeeping, Geneva Peace Week seeks to explore approaches to preventing and resolving violent conflict and building peace that are rooted in diverse traditions and know-how across the world, in contrast to theories and practices of peacebuilding that are rooted in the intellectual traditions and historical experiences of Euro-Atlantic societies.

As part of the EU Global Strategy, the EU sought to develop a holistic approach to conflict, which took into account different circumstances (identity, humanitarian, socio-economic security, environmental and energy dimension), the different cycles of a crisis (prevention, crisis management and peacebuilding), and the multiplicity of actors involved in a particular conflict setting.

The EU Integrated Approach vowed to upscale conflict prevention, through an improved EU Early Warning System. The EU also vowed to make full use of its tool-box, ranging from mediation and diplomacy, to military and civilian CSDP missions and humanitarian aid, to capacity-building and development and trade, to support to transitional justice. In March 2019, the EU established the ISP Directorate to scale-up EU efforts to better coordinate these efforts, combining security, development and diplomatic actions in support of a common set of agreed objectives. It ensures effective coordination of EU response throughout the entire conflict cycle, from early warning and horizon scanning to political-strategic planning for crisis management and stabilisation, as well as on the security of EU citizens caught up in crisis zones as appropriate.

Peacebuilding mechanisms that are rooted in local traditions can inform new perspectives on SSR processes. In some areas such as Liberia or Sierra Leone, indicators show that peacebuilding processes are more effective when local understanding [of the processes] is established and when traditional tools and mechanisms are adopted or adapted as means to more effective SSR outcomes. The creation of a unique, local and adapted form of transitional justice through the TRRC in the Gambia is the most recent example of a process that has consciously chosen to privilege local factors over international (Euro-Atlantic) practice.

The TRRC and the SSR processes in The Gambia have predominantly operated independently of each other; there is no formal means for dialogue between the TRRC and the Office of National Security (ONS). However, it is increasingly evident that the approach and findings of the TRRC are of critical importance for the development and application of effective SSR, with clear potential to impact and influence the current application and future development of the EU Integrated Approach to conflict prevention.

Against a backdrop of contrasting intellectual traditions and historical experiences [West African and Euro-Atlantic societies], the panel shall therefore identify specific lessons from the TRRC for the SSR process in the Gambia and consider how well placed the EU Integrated Approach is to adapt its understanding and approach to respond more effectively to SSR challenges. Additionally, as the Gambia seeks to finalise its National Security Strategy (NSS) and Security Sector Reform Strategy (SSRS), this panel is ideally placed to directly inform ongoing discussions on the next steps of The Gambia’s SSR journey.

Within the perspective of peacebuilding and cultural process’, the panel will explore the construct, operation and impact of localised peacebuilding efforts through the activities of the TRRC. The panel will also examine how international support for SSR could be adapted through recognition of the links between local initiatives on truth, justice, reconciliation and the creation of accountability, transparency, legitimacy and oversight of security sector institutions. Finally, there will be a consideration of the lessons identified to date for the EU’s support to conflict prevention in the Gambia (and elsewhere) through the application of its various instruments.

Programme:

Speakers:

Mr. Alagie Barrow, TRRC Director of Research and Investigations, Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission in the Gambia, Banjul.

Ms. Madeleine Majorenko, Integrated approach for Security and Peace, ISP.1 Concepts, Knowledge Management and Programmes, European External Action Service, European Union, Bruxelles.

Dr. Jonathan Marley, Policy Analyst – States of Fragility in the Crises and Fragility Team, Global Partnerships and Policy Division, Development Co-operation Directorate, OECD; Former DCAF resident coordinator, The Gambia.

Moderator:

Dr. Briony Jones, Associate Professor in International Development, Deputy Director, Warwick Interdisciplinary Research Centre for International Development (WICID), University of Warwick.

https://www.genevapeaceweek.ch/programme

Date and Time

Location

Genève Centre de Sécurité Police GCSP

2D Chemin Eugène-Rigot

Conference Room 1 (4th Floor)

1211 Genève

Switzerland

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