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News Roundup: 7 April – 13 April By: SSR Resource Centre | SSR | Apr 14, 2014

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UN approves Central African Republic peacekeeping mission

The United Nations Security Council has unanimously approved a 12,000-strong peacekeeping mission in the Central African Republic. The UN force will supplement French and African Union forces that are already on the ground and “overwhelmed” by the crisis. However, while UN officials warned that CAR could become the “next Rwanda,” it remains unclear which countries would offer support for the mission, which will not deploy until September. –Michelle Shephard, Toronto Star

Amnesty and disarmament are priority issues for Venezuelan opposition

Disarmament of violent non-state groups has become a priority issue for Venezuela’s political opposition. According to a letter delivered to the foreign ministers of the Union of South African Nations by opposition umbrella group MUD (United Democratic Panel), disarming violent groups is one of a series of priority topics the opposition wants to discuss with the government. –El Universal

Mexico: Self-Defense Militias Protest Government Disarmament

Members of self-defence militias in 15 towns throughout Mexico’s Tierra Caliente region staged protests against the government’s disarmament of militias last week, arguing that it would leave them defenceless against the Knights Templar drug cartel. A spokesman for the group said that the government had not fulfilled an earlier agreement to register the militias’ weapons, granting them a “limited measure” of legitimacy in fighting the cartels. –David Iaconangelo, Latin Times

Rasmussen: NATO could help reform Ukrainian military forces

In a speech last week NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmusen indicated that the alliance may be ready and willing to play a role in reforming the security sector in Ukraine. Read Rasmussen’s full speech here. –Interfax-Ukraine, Kyiv Post 

Somalia: Security downturn in Mogadishu

Three years after Al-Shabab insurgents withdrew from Mogadishu, security in the Somali capital remains a serious obstacle for aid workers and residents alike. There have been a growing number of threats from Al-Shabab and other criminals and militias, as well as an increase in the number of improvised explosive device, rocket, and mortar attacks. –IRIN News

Sierra Leone launches weapons marking and registration programme

Sierra Leone recently launched a new program designed to help it implement the Convention on Small Arms and Light Weapons. The program, which will include weapon marking and registration, will be managed by the Sierra Leone National Commission on Small Arms and supported by Action on Armed Violence (AOAV). –Liana Tepperman, AOAV

Sri Lanka troops kill emerging Tiger leaders: official

According to government officials, Sri Lanka’s military shot three men believed to be local leaders of the Tamil Tigers, a separatist groups defeated five years ago following a long-standing civil war with the Sri Lankan state. –Agence France Presse

USAID Launches New Water, Conflict, and Peacebuilding Toolkit

The US Agency for International Development (USAID) recently released a new Water and Conflict Toolkit, designed to help explore the links between water management, conflict, fragility, and peacebuilding. Almost 800 million people currently lack access to clean water and two-thirds of the world’s population is projected to face “severe water stress” by 2025. –Moses Jackson, New Security Beat



Peacebuilding and human rights—an agenda for democratic transformation

International relations specialists have begun to devote more time and attention to the relationship between peacebuilding and political governance in recent years. This article examines the trends that have shaped peacebuilding throughout the years, arguing that democratic transformation requires a change in thinking at each level of society in post-conflict nations. It further argues that there must be a shift from intervention towards conflict resolution and reconciliation. –Gabriela Monica Lucata, The Global Coalition for Conflict Transformation

The Costs of Security Sector: How the Money Question Can Lead to Questions About Purpose

When considering security sector reform projects and programs, cost-efficiency has often been subordinated to questions of expediency and effectiveness. Drawing on recent research in Liberia, Mali, Niger, and Somalia, this post explores several emerging issues surrounding the reconstruction of security sector institutions in post-conflict and fragile states. –Bernard Harborne, Oxford Research Group

Peacebuilding: The factor that makes a difference

This piece argues that donor agencies and peacebuilding practitioners should focus on empowering women’s leadership in conflict rather than treating women as victims of violence. Shifting the focus from victimhood to empowerment would help to challenge and change the predominating power structures in violent situations, and provide support to sustainable peacebuilding efforts. –Vanina Serra, Open Democracy

Security sector reforms are key to combating terrorism in EAC

The last few years has seen a steady level of violence perpetuated by terrorists and other non-state groups in East Africa. According to a range of security experts and counter-terrorism specialists, such insecurity can be traced to a lack of investment in intelligence and policing, corruption with the security sector, and widespread poverty among East African countries.  –Malkhadir Muhumed, The East African

Climate Change Mitigation, Peacebuilding, and Resilience

Despite the growing body of literature examining climate change and its link to conflict, there is a dearth of research and analysis about the possible impact of climate change adaptation and mitigation on post-conflict societies. This article discusses the link between climate change mitigation and peacebuilding, drawing on new empirical data from Nepal. –Florian Krampe, Carnegie Council

Philippines: Bangsamoro Peace Deal for Mindanao: Where’s the Peace?

Last week the Philippine government announced that it was signing a peace deal with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, a breakaway rebel group from the secessionist Moro National Liberation Front. Under the agreement, the Philippine government would create an autonomous Bansamoro political entity. However, the accord brokered by Malaysia follows a long list of failed peace deals over hundreds of years, and has come under strong opposition from armed groups, indigenous peoples, constitutionalists, and concerned citizens. –Paula Defensor Knack, The Diplomat

Visualizing the rise of a citizen security in the Americas

Latin America and the Caribbean have experienced some of the highest rates of violence in the world. This post explores and discusses the visualization of citizen security, which has steadily expanded in both regions since the late 1990s. –Robert Muggah, Local First Blog



Security Sector Reform in Kosovo: From Institutional Transitions to the Democratic Consolidation

Drawing on a case study of Kosovo, this article explores the relationship between security sector reform (SSR) and institutional transitions in post-conflict countries. It examines the institution building of key security institutions, including the role of the international community in SSR in Kosovo, and reviews the ways that security, politics, and the rule of law have become intertwined. –Bekim Baliqi, International Review

Security and justice reform: Overhauling and tinkering with current programming approaches

This report assembles a set of key lessons from a one-day workshop organized by the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) in 2014, titled “From policy to programme implementation: Examining the political economy of security and justice reform.” It includes feedback from an anonymous questionnaire of workshop participants, supplemented by a body of on-going thinking at ODI about the political economy of security and justice programming. –Lisa Denney and Pilar Domingo, Overseas Development Institute

Ending Conflict and Building Peace in Africa: A Call to Action

The African Development Bank Group presented the final report of its High Level Panel on Fragile States on Thursday April 10. The report addresses the challenge of youth employment, private investment in isolated communities, female empowerment, capacity building, and support to the economic aspects of justice and security, including promoting human security in Africa’s cities. –High Level Panel on Fragile States, African Development Bank Group


Security Sector Reform Resource Centre

Cyber-Terrorism and Canada’s Cyber-Security Strategy

When we hear the term cyber-terrorism, it conjures up visions of government computers and networks going black and information and assets surreptitiously disappearing due to clandestine breaches. But, as our world becomes more and more computerized, the concept of cyber-terrorism has broadened, with targets that can range from a country’s security sector and critical infrastructure to everyday facilities. –Valarie Findlay.

Publication Summary—Curbing Violence in Nigeria: The Boko Haram Insurgency

A new publication by the International Crisis Group focuses on the effects of the political violence in Nigeria, specifically the violence caused by Boko Haram. The insurgency led by Boko Haram, now entering its fourth year and showing no signs of abating, has had a particularly debilitating effect on Nigeria, resulting in the displacement of half a million people and the death of 4,000 civilians. –Lema Ijtemaye.



Call for Papers: The Extractive Industries and Post-conflict Reconstruction in Developing Countries

A special of issue of The Extractive Industries and Society will examine the linkages between natural resources and post-conflict reconstruction in the developing world. Possible topics include the role that governance, institution-building, transparency initiatives, corporate social responsibility, and civil society engagement and/or community-driven development can play in post-conflict development.

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