Insider Peace Builders in Societies in Transition
Despite several decades of impressive economic growth, the South and Southeast Asia region continues to be marred by ethnic conflicts, sectarian violence, and the entrenched impunity of security forces for war crimes and sexual violence.
Although protracted wars in Aceh, Nepal, Burma, and Sri Lanka have ended, the root causes of these conflicts have not yet been addressed. This poses serious threats to the credibility of the states and to the sustainability of peace. Where there are peace agreements and political settlements in place (Aceh and Nepal), implementation processes have been difficult and accountability remains poor.
This research project examines the influence of insiders in Aceh, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, and Nepal and explores their role in fostering more sustainable and legitimate political settlements. It will look at the potential, if any, of local interlocutors and bridge-builders to improve accountability and to challenge impunity, war crimes, and sexual violence after peace settlements.
The findings will be shared through papers, a number of short policy briefs, and several conference papers and presentations based on the findings of the study.
It is expected that this project will result in an increased understanding of the role of insider peace builders during the post-war political settlement phase and how they can help prevent future conflict. It will also increase awareness globally about how local resources contribute to sustainable peace building.