identifier S0020
Dr. Axel Klein, IFAA

Politics, Conflict and Conflict Resolution in the Horn of Africa:

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Date 2007
Research Paper
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Note Eritrea, Ethiopia, Somalia and Sudan.
Description Conflict, and consequently conflict resolution has to be squarely situated within the social process, and needs to be framed within the workings of the international political economy. External agencies involved in the Horn are aware of the importance of this knowledge gap, but should also become conscious of the controversy surrounding their interventions. The role of outsiders remains ambivalent. While each faction welcomes foreign assistance such interference, even the best intentioned, is not always conducive to furthering peace and reconstruction. It is the conclusion of this report that the most profitable point of engagement is with local peace initiatives determined upon breaking the cycle of violence and counter violence among given communities.We have adopted a regional approach to this report because of the interrelationship between the different conflict scenarios. Prior to the destabilisation of Zaire, cross-border interventionism was practised nowhere in Africa as blatantly as in the Horn. This adds grist to the mills of those arguing for a comprehensive regional settlement. We believe that while the nefarious practice of cross-border destabilisation must be halted, there is hope for endogenous peace initiatives.In the analysis of events in Eritrea, Ethiopia, Somalia and Sudan, the explanatory power of prevailing conflict models was considerably enhanced once environmental scarcity was contextualised within the political economy of development. Equally important, the power of symbolic representations of collective identity in perpetuating conflict had to be reversed. Instead of being approached as an essential determinant, ethnicity had to be viewed as a consequence of conflict.
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Series of conferences held at IFAA in 1998.

Conflics, Horn of Africa
Subject Conflics resolution
Post-Independence Conflicts
Subject Conflicts, Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Somalia
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