Civil society groups release resolution for peace in LRA-affected areas
This past week Conciliation Resources helped bring together civil society leaders comprising the Regional Civil Society Task Force, which includes members from four LRA-affected countries, to a meeting in Bangui, CAR. The task force released nine resolutions and recommendations focusing on the disarmament of the LRA, rehabilitation of those affected, and reconciliation for the region. Our friend Sister Angelique Namaika, who you might remember from her visit to DC in June as she testified on the LRA to members of Congress, was present in the group. We’ve listed their resolutions below – all of which we fully support:
1.To continue a collective pursuit to engage policymakers in the respective countries and advocate for peaceful strategies for resolving the conflict.
2.Engage our Governments and Parliaments to be more present in LRA affected areas that are isolated and far from the capitals with negligible services, security and communication infrastructure.
3.In light of the LRA’s known record of reprisals, we call for no offensive operations against the LRA without effective measures taken to protect civilians.
4.Call for response to the needs of the affected communities in terms of humanitarian support, psychosocial services and income generating activities.
5.Commit fully to our moral obligation to save lives of many innocent children abducted against their will, and do what it takes to facilitate their safe return and reintegration in their respective communities.
6.Call on national government and internationals to support community centers that can contribute to psycho-social healing of returnees and affected communities particularly women and young people.
7.Impress on our respective governments to put in place the necessary legislation to grand Amnesty to the defectors and promote reconciliation.
8.Recognize the intertwined nature between the Mbororo and the LRA conflict and contribute to addressing this issue peacefully on a regional scale.
9.Undertake activities in our respective countries and regionally to:
a.) Collect pertinent information relating to the LRA conflict, document, disseminate and archive for posterity
b.) Reach out to the LRA in order to encourage their safe return into the communities
c.) Reach out in solidarity to the affected communities
d.) Contribute to the issue of protection of civilians in a holistic way. Ensure that it becomes central to response strategies
e.) Continue advocacy efforts at local, national, regional and international levels
*photo courtesy of Sarah Bradford, Conciliation Resources