Peacebuilding is the political action which aims to promote the development of peaceful structures of social interaction after wars and conflicts. As such it deals with long-term processes and involves complex dynamics and a wide range of agencies, each of them with its own specific strengths and shortcomings. The paper begins by examining briefly the way peacebuilding ideas have emerged in the international system and especially in the United Nations, intended both as an international organisation and as the international institutional framework where the problems of war and conflict are tackled. An historical account of the changing nature of warfare, the emergence of the UN Peacebuilding Commission and the related involvement of civil society agencies in international peace efforts is provided, along with a relevant theoretical framework developed by the World Bank. Cyprus is then cited as a case in point for the traditional form of UN peace operations and the role played by civil society peacebuilding. UNFICYP is examined and Cypriot civil society peacebuilding introduced. Finally, the ‘Home for Cooperation’ project is presented as a noteworthy development which deserves local and international monitoring, support and involvement.
conflict analysis, peacebuilding, international affairs, civil society, Cyprus conflict, UNFICYP, peacebuilding in Cyprus, Cypriot civil society, 'Home for Cooperation'
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