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Can women make the world more peaceful? | Global Development Professionals Network | Guardian Professional

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Can women make the world more peaceful? | Global Development Professionals Network | Guardian Professional.

Do women hold the key to a peaceful society? Much is known about the victimisation of women through rape, trafficking, and early marriages, but much is yet to be discovered about how women can be empowered in conflict settings to bridge the gap towards peace.

I recently conducted research analysing female peacemaking and found that women do hold a significant role in the peace process. However, this role is not always long-term, unless gender equality is institutionalised through quotas. A better understanding of how women can transform conflict situations, and how to create space for them to do so, will be vital for the UN and other concerned actors in the coming years.

Bosnia’s Lessons for Syria – NYTimes.com

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Bosnia’s Lessons for Syria – NYTimes.com.

“Since the beginning of the Syrian civil war, many observers have drawn parallels between Syria and Bosnia. The Geneva II talks echo efforts to resolve the conflict in the Balkans 20 years ago.

What are the lessons? If there is a general one from Bosnia for the parties meeting in Switzerland, it is the need for humility. As determined as the international community may be to resolve conflict, civil war is extraordinarily resistant to outside intervention. This has three important implications.

The first is that peace initiatives are often an unreliable lens through which to view a conflict. There is a tendency to assume that facts on the ground in places like Bosnia or Syria are primarily controlled by strategies and timetables devised by foreigners. They are not…”

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