Browsing by Subject "conflict resolution"

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  • Ygot-Riikonen, Maria Sheila (2004)
    Christian and Muslim conflict in Southern Philippines intensified during the last few decades although a shared history dates back 435 years ago. The government has so far failed to deliver genuine peace and stability to 22 million people in Mindanao suffering from poverty, displacement, and bloodshed. After the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, the international community became aware of Islamic fundamentalist movements in Southeast Asia. The US government linked a Filipino Muslim group, Abu Sayyaf, to Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda, justifying the staging in Mindanao of what US Pres. George Bush said as the second largest 'war against terrorism' after Afghanistan. Whatever impact terrorist acts may have from Basilan to Manhattan, peace research is more urgent and significant than ever. This study looks at the causes of violence amongst Christian and Muslim Filipinos and consequently explores areas for peace by asking: "What are the reasons of conflict? Who are the actors and agenda-setters? How can a local conflict become linked to international terrorism? What are the ways and means of effective and immediate conflict resolution in Mindanao?" To acquire firsthand insight, in-depth qualitative interviews were conducted in the Philippines in June-October 2002 using a 60-day participant observation and the triangulation method for data gathering. Through snowball sampling, talks with different groups (government, military, rebels, academics, and NGOs) gave comprehensive and balanced analyses. Second, a quantitative survey of 400 youth respondents gave different views from Muslim and Christian perspectives, especially on concepts of alienation, animosity, and political participation. Finally, international newspaper reports, journals, and local publications were cautiously used as primary sources. Results showed contradictory views on the causes of conflict, whether economic, socio-political, or religious, depending on individuals and groups. Respondents said aggression was caused by economic neglect, frustration with the government, and lack of socio-political influence. Solutions offered are poverty alleviation, tolerance of socio-cultural diversity, strong leadership, and recognition of international peace agreements. Other means of conflict resolution involve empowering citizens, creating a balance of forces, channeling resources at the grassroots level, and cultivating a culture of peace.
  • Pylvänäinen, Jaakko (Helsingin yliopisto, 2019)
    This study set out to examine and analyse Finnish military chaplains’ and commanders’ conceptions and experiences concerning the utilisation of Finnish military chaplains as religious experts – i.e. advising personnel on religion and culture and engaging local religious leaders and communities – in international military operations, with the focus on deployments to Lebanon and Afghanistan from 2010 to 2018. Simultaneously the study intended to contribute to the broader discussion on religious approaches and actors in conflict resolution, especially in the framework of comprehensive crisis management (CCM). This was done by conducting a qualitative content analysis on ten semi-structured interviews. The interviews were studied through a framework of religious approaches to conflict resolution, particularly the concepts of Religious Area Analysis (RAA) and Religious Leader Engagement (RLE) by Dr. Steve K. Moore and Religious Advicement (RA) and Religious Leader Engagement/Religious Leader Liaison (RLL) by Dr. Eric Patterson. It was found that Finnish military chaplains’ RAA/RA and RLE/RLL endeavours in the two countries have been similar to their international counterparts’ contributions in various operational environments, with the exception of no known successes of mediation, facilitation, or reconciliation between estranged local religious actors or communities – only some attempts in Lebanon. Although in the interviewees’ cases RAA/RA and RLE/RLL efforts seem to have been limited mainly by external factors such as the level of willingness of locals, the security situation at hand, and the mandate and nature of each operation, the effect of individual and organisational issues was evident: to some extent, lack of full awareness and vision, insufficient policy and doctrine, limited training and instructions, inadequate planning and preparations, non-existent organisational frameworks, short rotations, and biased attitudes of personnel all have influenced Finnish chaplains’ chances to serve their contingents in terms of local religious conditions and actors. In other words, these activities have not been conducted in a fully organised manner. The irregular state of RAA/RA and RLE/RLL in the Finnish Defence Forces has implications to the comprehensiveness of the organisation’s conflict resolution efforts: if relevant expertise is not systematically used, opportunities will likely be missed and unnecessary mistakes made. Moreover, in light of theoretical understanding it may be stated that without a broader vision, longer-term planning, and increased commitment with respect to the approaches it will be very difficult, if not impossible, to connect the Finnish Defence Forces’ international operations to any peacebuilding initiatives through local religious and traditional leaders – a strategy which has proven to be highly useful for Finnish peace mediation efforts.
  • Lundmark, Johanna (Helsingin yliopisto, 2018)
    In this study I look ahead into the immediate postwar future in Syria. The purpose of my study is to review political processes that could break the pattern of recurring violence and support long-term stabilization. It seems to me that peace processes and the international discussion surrounding them have become what could perhaps be called ‘pacifitized’ – too charged with assumptions and contest to yield substantial results. Actors and conflict parties spend more time on blaming each other than discussing tangible solutions. This has been too scarcely noted in previous conflict resolution literature. Postwar issues need to become the intrinsic focus of peace negotiations. To bring this development about, the discussion around peace needs to become less charged with antagonizing communication. I utilize a combination of several political theory approaches for this study. Power political decisions are suited by a realist view, whereas cooperative communal projects benefit of a liberal perspective. These approaches are supplemented with additions from poststructuralism and postcolonialism. The Syrian scene is a complex conflict matrix that cannot sufficiently be analyzed with one theory alone. I also review experience from previous sectarian conflicts to find cases the Syrian situation can be compared to. Past experiences from similar conflict structures can be revisited to avoid making the same miscalculations that were made before. Processes resulting in a positive outcome in one setting, combined with the knowledge on another specific local, can be adjusted and applied in a new context. Syria seems to again have become a proxy battle ground for great power interests. Regardless of where the power ultimately settles, the governing party will have a shortage on legitimacy. The Syrian political sphere needs to open up and adequate postwar stabilization efforts commence. Introduction of inclusive societal elements can further be one of the most effective ways to combat spoilers. The task of building an inclusive society and countering antagonization is arduous and costly. Funding for retribution and rebuilding could perhaps be collected into a global fund established for this cause. Changes will take time, and they need to take place on all societal levels. For the aim of ensuring local support, the peace process needs to be rooted in the local from the start. This will also limit the amount of issues that parties can use for objects of pacifitization. To summarize, the processes set into motion need to be ones that firstly, the local community agrees with and secondly, ones that can plausibly be considered to become self-sustainable in the future. This requires sturdy planning from trials to funding of the process, preferably already before an international intervention into the conflict is conducted. International support for peace processes will continuously be called for, but for the previously mentioned reasons, the local should be the uncontested focus of all peace processes.
  • Zyaparova, Polina (Helsingin yliopisto, 2018)
    The thesis seeks to analyse The Moro conflict in the Philippines that is characterised by a propagated and multi-layered nature. The Philippines has been torn by internal conflicts since 1969, by two main religious communities: Muslims represented by the Moro people, and Christians who represent the majority of population. In my research, I focus on the conflict prerequisites that stem from the results of colonialism. I view colonialism as the period that significantly contributed to the formation of ethnic stereotyping, socio-economic neglect, and the split in Filipino society. Hence, it can be stated that reinforced stereotypes against the others that is Moro people serve as the indicator of the societal split and tendencies to demonization. For my work it was crucial to tackle the following theoretical topics: the history of colonialism as prerequisites for ethnic tensions; the formation of stereotypes and processes of reinforcement; the notion of indigenous rights and territorial claims. Filipino nation is closely connected with the post-colonial history and the indigenous roots. plan In regards to the peace studies, I was looking at the terrorist dynamics in the Philippines to see the interdependence between failed peace agreements and the radicalization, as well as, the differences between positive and negative notions of peace, and external influence. The method of the research is the comparative contextual analysis with the elements of the linguistic ambiguity analysis. The analysis looks, firstly, at the correlation between the final draft of the Bangasamoro Basic Law (the law, if passed, will enact the peace agreement and establish the structure of government for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region) and UN Declaration of on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Secondly, the analysis observes the process of law making by comparing the BBL drafts from the years 2014, 2015, and 2017. In conclusion, the link between reinforced stereotyping and colonialism has been established. Comparative analysis has served as the basis for observing some major changes in the way the BBL committee was tackling the document drafting. It has shown that the new approach has striven to secure the long-lasting peace by addressing different levels of marginalization, following the rules of equality, inclusion, and the international law standards. It can be stated that the Philippines is taking a path for establishing positive peace and resorts to one of the methods to solve the conflict based on territorial claims by granting autonomy to Moros.