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Security in Complex Emergencies and Conflicts NGO Perspective Syed Sharfuddin CEO, Muslim Aid UK
Definitions • DISASTER: Caused by invincible forces of nature but their impact can be reduced by advance planning and mitigation; • CATASTROPHE: A disaster gone bad due to interference with nature or conflicts not resolved at the right time in the right way; • COMPLEX CONFLICTS: Competing forces producing a chain reaction that is costly to contain and requires a long time to stabilise.
Threats • Weak states, including states in transition to democracy; • Scientific and technological hazards; • New vulnerabilities; • Poverty and associated indicators; • Protection of development finance.
Conflict Impact • Conflicts have increased in numbers and intensity ; • Become widely extra-territorial; • Place additional strain on development partners and global financial institutions; • Impact on aid and development fatigue.
Conflict Checklist • Constitutional and legal framework; • Organs of State; • Regulatory institutions ; • Policies and national strategy; • Growth and development; • Policy Framework for future planning.
Security Intervention – Plus Points • Stabilises a violent theatre; • Provides breathing space from bloodshed to address underlying issues that drive conflict; • Provides opportunities for local stakeholders to start the process of dialogue, build trust and make compromises; • Prevents a conflict situation from becoming a humanitarian catastrophe; • Train and build capacity of local forces to consolidate peace and mitigate risks.
Conflict Action List • Michael Lund’s 12 points: • act early • be swift and decisive • use talent • use a combination of responses • support moderate leaders • build local networks • use credible sticks • work through local institutions • involve regional organisations • involve major powers • promote effective communications strategy • use diplomacy with teeth.
Security Intervention: Minus Points • Cost of external intervention; • Delayed 911 response; • Peace agreements imposed from outside do not last; • Carrot and stick package; • Focus on strong national security structures.
Security Intervention: Important Assumptions • Must be tailor made; • Must be seen by both locals and outsiders to be necessary, legitimate, impartial and competent; • Must be accompanied with a transparent agenda of development, human rights and humanitarian assistance; • Must involve the private sector and civil society beyond government and military mechanisms; • Must have a long term view.
Role of Private Sector, Research and NGOs • Risk assessment, mitigation and mediation; • Value for money; • Wider range of expertise and efficiencies; • Scientific and Research based knowledge; • Comparative advantage of NGOs.
Obstacles • Attitude of States; • National development plans; • Weak States; • Managing Partners.