Developing the Mediation and Post-conflict Reconstruction and Development Pools of the African Union Peace and Security Department Civilian Standby Roster

The African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD), together with the African Union (AU) Peace and Security Department (PSD), held the African Union Mediation and Post-conflict Reconstruction Staffing, Rostering and Training Workshop in Durban, South Africa on 14À“15 April 2011. The workshop brought together the AU, Regional Economic Communities (RECs), policymakers, mediation and post- conflict reconstruction experts, and civil society actors to inform the development of, and assist, the AU in identifying and articulating clear and specific needs of the mediation and post-conflict reconstruction and development (PCRD) pools of the PSD Civilian Standby Roster

Media reporting of mass sexual violence in war: Unintended consequences or structural flaw?

This paper analyses the issue of media reporting of violence against women in conflicts in Africa. It argues that media oversensationalisation of the experiences of sexual violence victims has served to further violate the rights of the women it is purporting to help. This invariably violates, even if inadvertently, their rights to privacy and dignity in the face of tragedy; reiterates stereotypical views of women as helpless and victimised; and sends a message to aggressors that their desired objective has been achieve.

Africa: Clinton must condemn militarism in Africa

South Africans will celebrate National Women’s Day on 9 August. As the country prepares for this historic celebration, United States (US) Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton arrived in South Africa on 6 August. It’s a fitting metaphor that Clinton, who’s arguably the world’s most politically powerful woman, is visiting South Africa at this time and it provides the space to talk about political power and women’s role in it.
By commemorating the women’s march to the Union Buildings, August 9th directly remembers South African women’s mass political action in taking on a repressive state power. It’s a reminder that women in South Africa and in many African countries have always been effective agents of political change À“ whether challenging the pass law system, being part of armed resistance or being effective leaders and representatives in elected and parliamentary structures. It’s important to remember the role of women in African political and economic life, as post-liberation African governments often work against women while at the same time insultingly celebrating African women as revered non-entities.

Tragedy and triumph: Rwandan women’s resilience in the face of sexual violence

The prosecution of rape, both internationally and nationally, has rarely been a priority, while a government-administered fund in Rwanda to compensate genocide survivors is overburdened and does not specifically provide for survivors of sexual violence. Nevertheless, there exist a number of promising initiatives in Rwanda that signal a shift in how sexual violence is addressed. Sexual violence was labelled a ‘category one’ crime, or one of the most serious crimes committed during the genocide and by 2010, the traditional gacaca courts1 had presided over some 7,000 cases of genocidal sexual violence. Trauma counsellors have been available for survivors of sexual violence testifying before gacaca courts, and they were permitted to testify in closed sessions to avoid stigmatisation.

Climate change and conflict: Lessons for conflict resolution from the Southern Sahel of Sudan

Using a human security perspective, this report identifies and analyses local and international non-governmental organisation (NGO) interventions in cases of conflicts related to the environment and environmental change in the southern Sahel of Sudan. The research was driven by the premise that valuable lessons for addressing conflicts related to the impacts of climate change may be identified from environmental interventions. The report focuses on the southern Sahel that stretches across Africa and across Sudan; in particular, the state of Southern Kordofan and its neighbours. It is argued that this study area is relevant to identify how measures to address environment-related conflicts can be applied in other areas where climate change impacts À“ drought, desertification, water scarcity, and competition over grazing and pasture À“ can contribute to conflict. The research largely focused on conflicts between and within pastoralist, agro-pastoralist and farmer communities in the context of these same challenges À“ making the argument and then building on the premise that the study area is relevant from which to draw lessons for climate adaption. The study provides practical lessons and academic insights on resolving environment-related conflicts in Sudan and conflict-sensitive climate change adaptation for policy makers, practitioners and academics.

Mediating land conflict in Burundi

An assessment and evaluation project was undertaken by Accord in 2009/10 to explore how land conflict mediation addresses other more long term challenges for peace in Burundi À“ principally the utilisation of land and increasing access to sustainable livelihoods. Emphasis was put on repatriation, and reintegration of returnees and reconciliation between different Burundian social groups. The project documented and analysed ACCORD’s land conflict practice in the provinces of Bururi and Ruyigi.

What the International Criminal Court has achieved and can achieve for victims/survivors of sexual violence

In this contribution, the provisions of potential benefit to victims/survivors of sexual violence in the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court and its subsidiary instruments will be discussed. In addition, the Court’s practice to date in investigating and prosecuting sexual violence crimes will be examined. The new regime of the ICC brings with it improvements to international criminal law of benefit to victims/survivors of sexual violence. Whether this also means that the interests of victims/survivors of sexual violence are also better served in practice than under previous processes is, however, discussed, followed by the ICC’s potential to address justice for victims/survivors of sexual violence. In this contribution it will become clear that provisions which are good on paper may not necessarily be sufficient in providing justice to victims of sexual violence. Good implementation of these provisions and of the institutional structures at the Court is needed in order to ensure that the rights given to victims/survivors of sexual violence do not remain merely an empty promise.

The complexity of applying UN Resolution 1325 in post conflict reintegration processes: The case of Northern Uganda

The United Nations (UN) Security Council Resolution 1325 calls on all actors involved to address the special needs of women and girls during rehabilitation, reintegration and post-conflict reconstruction. This study endeavors to analyse the reintegration experience of women and girls in post-conflict Uganda. In this country, the recruitment of combatants by the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) has been characterised by the forcible abduction of young boys and girls, and the eventual deployment of child soldiers. The government of Uganda, in its attempt to defeat the LRA and in recognition of the fact that the LRA forcibly conscripted children to wage their cause, offered amnesties to all individuals who returned or were rescued from the LRA. This process has had consequences for the general female population of the Acholi community in northern Uganda.

Cop and concillor down crowd

A cop and a councillor showed great bravery when the talked kasy people out of street justice against an allaged drug dealer.
Angry residents of Sosh anguve, north of Tshwane, were fed up with a woman who wouldn’t stop pushing dagga. So on Monday night the met to decide what to do. “Our kids are hobos because of this woman who sells them dagga,À shouted one mum. “We want her out of our area or she will be sorry.À Then a man in the crowd said the meeting was a waste of time, they should evict the woman. Residents told Daily Sun that if the woman didn’t go they would burn her house down.
Local leader Ernest Tshabalala said residents warned the woman four times after finding evidence of her dagga dealing. He said people were so furious he called the police and ward 39 councillor Naome Kataka.

Stabbed lover lands in ICU_07122011_Midweek sun

A domestic dispute between a female Special Constable and her lover left, left her in a critical condition after the 22 year old lass was stabbed eight times with a knife.. Mpilo Siviya of Area S location in Francistownis fighting for his dear life at Nyangabgwe Referral Hospitals Intensive Care Unit.