Monday, June 25, 2007

Post-Conflict Reconstruction: Engaging Civil Society in Reform

Featured Speakers: Rep. Alcee L. Hastings, Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe; Ambassador John Herbst; John D. Sullivan, CIPE; Hamidullah Farooqi, Afghanistan International Chamber of Commerce; Jafar Javan, UNDP; Martin Tisne, Tiery.

Moderator: Oscar DeSoto, U.S. Department of State.

In his opening remarks, Rep. Alcee Hastings stated that the “social fabric of a country has to heal” before reconstruction efforts can be fully effective. He added that future peace in post-conflict countries also depends on an active civil society. Panelists emphasized the need to engage national actors and implement local capacity building to facilitate post-conflict development. The work of diplomats, military personnel and development actors is essential, but even more important is the effective transition of countries from international assistance to local capacity.

When it comes to addressing national security issues, post-conflict reconstruction is beginning to take center stage. Ambassador John Herbst described the work of the Office of Reconstruction and Stabilization (s/CRS) in responding to the challenge of post-conflict recovery, a focus area which has thus far been underemphasized within the State Department. The main goal of this office is to build civilian capacity that can effectively operate alongside the U.S. military. The Ambassador stressed the need for ensuring that this new capacity remains out of the hands of the Pentagon, given that U.S. foreign policy has become overly militarized. He added that s/CRS is looking to cooperate with the UN Peacebuilding Commission in implementing its reconstruction programs in the field.

Sponsor: The Center for International Private Enterprise

Location: Rayburn House Office Building, Room 2255

Date: June 12, 2007

Time: 9:00am-12:00pm

Approximate Number of Attendees: 30

Intern Attending: Alexandra Martins

1 comment:

Maria said...

This is so true. How can a community heal from war with a weapon. Military may bring physical security but it does not bring peace. In post-conflict societies, positive and peacefuls means to recover should be the way back to restore a nation torn by conflict, like work and capacity building. Give the chance to people to restore their lives by their own hands through their own ways.