by Annie Rubin
Humanitarian aid organizations, while providing lifesaving assistance, must also navigate the web of ethical and logistical challenges inherent to conflict-affected environments. It is often required, for example, that humanitarian actors be escorted within a country by parties to a conflict. Talking with armed groups—especially terrorist groups—even in the context of helping civilians, can be perceived as legitimizing them. Furthermore, it is not always clear whether resources that organizations provide are reaching those they are intended for.
by Michael R. Snyder
Last week, the Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) reached a sobering milestone by becoming the second largest Ebola outbreak in history, second only to the 2014–16 epidemic in West Africa. There were 453 total cases and 268 deaths in the affected provinces of North Kivu and Ituri, according to the latest World Health Organization (WHO) situation report issued December 5.
Violence in Burundi, including shootings and even grenade attacks, have become common in Bujumbura, the capital of this tiny country, since President Pierre Nkurunziza announced his intention to run for a third term this spring.
by Ryan Cummings
Mireille Affa'a Mindzie, George Mukundi Wachira, and Lucy Dunderdale
The “Africa rising” narrative has gained traction in recent years. But who, exactly, is rising? While statistics point to a continent whose fortunes have improved, many African citizens remain at the margins of socioeconomic development. And as recent citizen uprisings on the continent demonstrate, growth without effective democratic governance cannot ensure peace and stability.
Ending impunity and promoting justice and reconciliation reflect core objectives underpinning the African Union. Amid renewed debate about justice and peace on the African continent, this report investigates the issue of impunity and its relationship with peace, justice, reconciliation, and healing.
Stearns: "Future of Congo Should Be in Hands of the Congolese"
"We need to give Congolese the tools to solve their own problems," said Jason Stearns, author of Dancing in the Glory of Monsters: the Collapse of the Congo and the Great War of Africa, during an IPI event on May 17th. "At the end of the day, it’s their duty, their responsibility. No foreigner is ever going to come in and fix the Congo’s problems."
The mass arrival and prolonged presence of refugees in neighboring countries can have a negative impact on peace. Yet the issue of refugees has entered very little into contemporary discussions of peacebuilding.
I'm going to quickly say something about Uganda and Sudan. Uganda was more post-conflict situation, de facto post-conflict starting in 2006 with the start of the Juba peace talks and, effectively, the LRA raids in Northern Uganda and Eastern Uganda stopped. I'm not saying that it's a complete blanket statement.
Within the United Nations, the concept of the responsibility to protect (RtoP) has regained considerable momentum after nearly two years of stasis following the 2005 World Summit. Outside the corridors of the world body, discussions about RtoP and its application to specific regional situations, as well as the mandate of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, one of the crimes specified in the Summit's Outcome Document, are still at a nascent stage.