Shifting power for peace in times of COVID-19
Peace Direct, Conducive Space for Peace, Humanity United.
A joint blog from Conducive Space for Peace, Humanity United and Peace Direct.
At the end of September, Peace Direct, Humanity United and Conducive Space for Peace held a second consultation on COVID-19 and local peacebuilding. Almost 100 peacebuilders from 67 countries joined the consultation over two days, discussing the impact of the pandemic on conflict and peacebuilding, changes in funding, and engagement between the international community and local peacebuilders.
When we held our first consultation in April 2020, the COVID-19 crisis and response to it were already exacerbating the underlying roots of conflict, particularly inequality. In some places, violence was being reignited and peace processes threatened. Initial analyses on the potential impacts of the pandemic were dire, anticipating increased conflict with armed groups taking advantage of the situation, compounded by closing civic space and decreasing social cohesion. More recent analysis and discussions with local peacebuilders have highlighted a more nuanced impact of COVID-19 on conflict dynamics.