announces its 2015 Annual ConferenceBreaking Down Shades of Color: Power, Privilege and Potential in Race ConflictsNovember 5-7, 2015This conference aims to highlight the sources, nature and growing incidence of race-based conflicts and the efforts being made to manage, resist and transform these conflicts.We invite proposals…See More
We are pleased to announce our Fellowship program for 2015 focusing once again on water conflicts, this time in Honduras. Fellows in Honduras are expected to conduct research, document local approaches and challenges in dealing with water conflicts. This material will provide vital information to the Center in developing a manual for peacebuilders working on water conflicts. For more information visit…See More
The Center for Conflict Studies at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies announces the launch of the 2015 Summer Peacebuilding Program (SPP), a three-week long intensive training program designed to bridge the theory and practice of building peace in societies that are emerging from conflict, violence or war.SPP provides an opportunity for participants to learn from…See More
CCS is pleased to announce the Peacebuilders Fellowship, a summer fellowship program for graduate students in the U.S. The program will begin in summer 2014. In keeping with the Center’s mission, the goal of the fellowship is to give a voice to the voiceless. Fellows will spend about two months in a conflict zone and collect stories of people who have experienced conflict. The hope is that the individual stories will give face to a “distant” conflict and provide empirical knowledge, which in…See More
The Centre for Conflict Studies welcomes submissions for its first conference, “Religion and Gender: Identity, Conflict and Power”, to be held November 8-10, 2012 in Monterey, California.We invite proposals from graduate students, academics, and practitioners in religion, gender, conflict studies and other related disciplines.Proposal Submission Deadline: April 15, 2012.Visit our conference website …See More
Given your field of work and focus on South and Southeast Asia, I would like to bring your attention to the upcoming Asia Pacific Mediation Forum (APMF) not-for-profit event; "The Asia Pacific Mediation Leadership Summit - From Talk To Action", taking place in Bangkok 2 - 4 December 2011, which brings together mediation and ADR specialists from various fields; including family mediation, commercial and workplace mediation, court-annexed mediation, conflict and community mediation, climate change and disaster response mediation and various cross-sectional themes, like for example human rights, cross-cultural dynamics and women in mediation.
Do have a look at my profile and the Mediation Summit's link (www.mediation-leadership.com), feel free to email me or send me a message when having any questions regarding participation and also do feel free to forward the information about our Summit to your colleagues.
AN APPEAL TO CONTACTS IN INDIA TO EXPRESS COMPASSION BY CONTACTING THE SRI LANKAN AUTHORITIES FOR THE RESPECT OF HUMANITARIAN LAW
Sri Lanka : The Last Round ?
With the Sri Lankan government troops closing in to the remaining Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) stronghold, it looks as if this is the last round of a military struggle that began in 1983 but whose roots go back at least to independence in 1948. The ongoing conflict between the Sinhala and the Tamils that has ebbed and flowed derives its emotional force, in part, from competing beliefs that began during the colonial period about legitimate rule, economic wellbeing, and sacred authority.
The Office to the United Nations, Geneva, Association of World Citizens has had a long-standing concern with the conflict in Sri Lanka and has made frequent calls for good-faith negotiations on the political and administrative structure of the State. I had thought that reason would win out over the irrational drive to settle complicated issues of social-political structures through armed violence. I seem to have been wrong since both the government and the LTTE gave up negotiations in exchange for a military ‘solution’. A military victory seems now possible for the government forces.
There are two short-term dangers. There are some 200,000 people trapped between the LTTE militias and the government troops. There have been appeals from the United Nations and the International Committee of the Red Cross for a cease-fire so that civilians, especially the sick and wounded, can leave the fighting area. As this is being written (11 Feb. 2009), there is no cease-fire and none seems in view.
There have been calls from the Government to the LTTE leadership to lay down their arms and end the fighting. Again, this is a logical possibility, but given past LTTE willingness to fight to the bitter end, a massive rendition seems unlikely. Thus, there may be a heavy loss of life of those caught in the cross-fire.
The second danger is revenge killings on a large scale. The Tamil-Sinhalese conflict has been extremely bitter. Many families in both communities have lost kin. Although binding up the wounds of war should be the first priority, there is always a danger that revenge killings take place. Logically, the establishment of social cohesion — that is, an ongoing process of developing a community of shared values and opportunities based on a sense of trust, hope and reciprocity — should be the prime aim of government policy. However, there are small groups of violent individuals who may be ready to kill for revenge or to get rid of rivals.
Therefore, the Office to the UN, Geneva, of the Association of World Citizens has sent a three-point appeal to the President of Sri Lanka, Mr Mahinda Rajapaksa:
1) calling for the respect of international humanitarian law as expressed in the Red Cross Geneva Conventions;
2) appealing for the protection of all civilians both during the on-going conflict and especially in the period following the end of armed conflict during which there is a danger of revenge killings. We are sure that Sri Lanka will respect universally-recognized human rights standards;
3) appealing further that serious consultations on the governmental and administrative structures of the State be undertaken so as to facilitate national unity based on the respect of individual views and aspirations.
Wide support for these three aims would be welcome. Letters could be sent to the Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the United Nations in New York:
H.E. H.M.G.S. Palikakkara
Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka
630 Third Ave.
New York, NY 10017, USA
Rene Wadlow, Representative to the United Nations, Geneva, Association of World Citizens
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