The long road to peace: Why engaging the diaspora is essential to peacebuilding in Syria

TitelThe long road to peace: Why engaging the diaspora is essential to peacebuilding in Syria
Typ der PublikationReport
Publikationsjahr2015
AutorInnenN.N.
Untertitel / SerientitelPeace Focus
Pagination6 pp.
Kurztext

International Alert’s new Peace Focus paper, The long road to peace: Why engaging the diaspora is essential to peacebuilding in Syria, describes the Syrian diaspora in the UK and explores the potential for Syrians living in the UK to contribute to building peace in Syria.

Peacebuilding doesn’t just begin when a conflict ends. It is important to build a safer and more peaceful future for the people of Syria even in the midst of an increasingly complex conflict and emergency.

International Alert's research finds that there are significant advantages to working with the diaspora for peace and development in Syria:

  • Diaspora groups have access to communities within Syria and therefore an understanding of the on-the-ground realities;
  • The way in which aid is delivered by diaspora groups offers an opportunity to lay the foundations for a peaceful future in Syria; and
  • Diaspora organisations can play an important role in creating a more nuanced understanding of the Syria conflict in the UK among the public and policy-makers.

Yet, the paper also warns that it is important to be aware of the limitations of such engagement:

  • The diaspora is a voice and not the voice. Even within communities that are often presented as homogenous, there is no one position on the conflict or what a peaceful Syrian society should look like;
  • The Syrian diaspora is currently only loosely networked and lacks a platform from which to coordinate efforts or to engage policy-makers;
  • Syrian diaspora organisations are small in size and scope; and
  • Those comprising the Syrian diaspora remain intricately connected with the conflict and raise their voices at considerable risk.

A key recommendation from the paper is that the diaspora can strengthen its own impact and engagement with policy-makers and the wider development and peacebuilding sector by building its own platform from which to engage. Alert is currently supporting the development of such a network for UK-based Syrian organisations and individuals, the Syrian Platform for Peace.

URLhttp://www.international-alert.org/