Document symbol: PK/G/2020
UN Support to Local Mediation: Challenges and Opportunities
This publication by DPPA's Mediation Support Unit outlines various opportunities and challenges related to the UN's involvement in support of local mediation and dialogue processes. The paper draws on insights emanating from a series of field deployments, reflection exercises as well as case studies (detailing local mediation processes in 5 country cases, including Afghanistan, the Central African Republic, Myanmar, the Philippines as well as South Sudan) conducted over the past two years (2018-2020). The paper seeks to deepen understanding of UN engagement at the local level and its strategic relevance to UN peacemaking efforts; distil insights around pursuing linkages between national and local mediation processes; as well as highlight lessons from engagements with traditional peacemaking approaches and the inclusion of women in mediation at local level. Early reflections indicate the need to identify and leverage the UN's comparative advantage; enhance coordination within and beyond the UN; champion the do no harm principle, local capacities and local ownership; as well as strengthen the inclusion of women, youth, indigenous groups, victims, and other, often marginalized groups, in mediation and dialogue processes at local level.
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