Training mediators in Kyrgyzstan

Mediators from Toktogol district work on problem-solving as well as team and trust building skills through an exercise known as “the knot”International Alert recently oversaw the training of community mediators in Jalal-Abad province in Kyrgyzstan.

The training was conducted by local mediators taught by Alert and focused on conflict prevention and conflict de-escalation, including conflict analysis and resolution methods, and the steps of mediation. It will be followed by two more rounds of training.

The participants are part of a wider network of community mediators supported by the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and the training is part of an 18-month project funded by the EU called the Transition and Rehabilitation Alliance for Southern Kyrgyzstan (TASK).

TASK is about mitigating conflict dynamics among local communities, which escalate quickly and lack local capacity for non-violent de-escalation. Our role is to strengthen and support mediators working in this area. This includes providing training on mediation and conducting workshops and seminars on conflict issues in four provinces – three in the south of the country and one in the north. This is designed to be both an early warning and immediate community-based early response.

In the province of Batken, we are working on the project with the Foundation for Tolerance International (FTI), the Coalition for Democracy and Civil Society (CDCS) and 12 other national and international NGOs. In the provinces of Chui, Jalal-Abad and Osh, we are providing mediation trainings to a network of almost 750 community mediators. This network was established in 2011-12 by the OSCE in partnership with the local authorities and civil society to jointly address conflict at local levels.