Peace Talks 11 - The new face of conflict

Crime, gangs and the changing faces of conflict

Building peace means addressing the sources of civil and political unrest, whether in Ukraine, DRC or Northern Ireland. It also means dealing with the criminal networks that flourish in conflict’s shadow.

And there are countries such as Mexico where millions of people live under the threat of organised violence rooted in crime, much of it drugs related, much of it to do with urban gangs. And other countries where crime, politics and armed conflict intertwine so tightly they can barely be distinguished from each other.

This Peace Talks event asks how we can adapt to these new contexts and challenges, and what peacebuilding has to offer to strategies for addressing criminal violence. We also took this opportunity to launch International Alert’s new report Crime and conflict: The new challenge for peacebuilding.


  • Sasha Jesperson, Research Analyst with the National Security and Resilience Studies programme, Royal United Services Institute (RUSI)
  • Rabia Nusrat, Emerging Projects Manager, International Alert
  • Junior Smart, Former gang member and founder of London’s largest gang exit programme, SOS Project
  • Dan Smith (Chair), Secretary General, International Alert