Despite years of learning, increased resources and numerous agendas seeking to bring about sustained peace, the majority of the world’s conflicts remain unresolved.
The recently launched Principles for Peace (P4P) initiative, spearheaded by Interpeace and with support from the governments of Sweden, Switzerland, Denmark, the Netherlands and Germany, seeks to provide a practical framework to address longstanding barriers to peace within the international peace and security architecture.
P4P is a global participatory initiative intending to re-think and re-frame the current way that peace processes are understood and implemented, by establishing a new set of international principles to better enable local, national and international actors to craft more inclusive peace processes that result in long-term sustainable peace. The development of these principles will be wholly informed and guided by a series of inclusive and participatory ‘bottom-up and top-down’ consultation processes across 25 countries, involving a range of diverse stakeholders from local civil society, international peacebuilding organisations and political spaces.
The findings from these consultations will be complemented by thematic research to explore the trends and perspectives arising in different contexts, as well as a global survey and outreach campaign to mobilise and amplify local experiences and aspirations and position them at the centre of global debate. The process will be led by a diverse, International Commission of Eminent Persons and supported by a Stakeholder Platform as a sounding board, to guide the initiative towards:
- Establishing a much-needed new set of principles, informal norms and guidance for how to structure, sequence and build more inclusive peace processes.
- Creating greater accountability and long-term oversight of peace processes and subsequent implementation actions.
- Changing the incentives of national and international actors engaged in peace-making and peacebuilding interventions and seeking to deliver the necessary strategic coherence and long-term oversight required to achieve sustainable peace outcomes.
International Alert will be actively participating in several aspects of the initiative, including in the Stakeholder Platform, as well as rolling out our Peace Perceptions Poll to support the global survey in producing baseline and ongoing monitoring data and insights into popular perspectives on peace processes. Our Nigeria and Ukraine country teams will contribute to developing the systematic basis of knowledge to guide the development of inclusive peace processes by coordinating participatory stakeholder consultations.
In Nigeria the consultations will take place in Borno, Bauchi, Benue and Abuja, and will involve community leaders, religious leaders, local policy makers, women’s organisations, youth organisations, civil society organisations and humanitarian actors among many others. These consultations will address a variety of questions about peace – exploring what peace means in local contexts and what can contribute to it, as well as challenges and barriers towards the attainment of peace in different communities. The aim is to be solutions focused by understanding the issues, envisioning hopes and aspirations for the future and collectively deciding what each person can contribute to achieve it. The first set of consultations took place in Borno and Bauchi States. Most of the participants were representatives of critical stakeholders that are usually excluded from peace processes for example, youth, people living with disabilities, women and children who usually bear the brunt of conflict. Consultations in Benue and Abuja are underway, please keep an eye on Alert’s website for updates on the findings and the recommendations that come out of the consultations.