Statement on Political and Identity-Based Violence
Alliance for Peacebuilding Calls on Global Leaders to Condemn Political and Identity-Based Violence
October 31, 2018
Statement by Elizabeth Hume, Vice President of Programs and Acting Chief Executive Officer, Alliance for Peacebuilding
Last week, the Alliance for Peacebuilding (AfP) hosted PeaceCon 2018, an annual conference that unites a dynamic network of funders, policymakers, diplomats, members of the military, academics, non-governmental organizations, and other peacebuilding professionals. It is a platform to share key learnings and findings and build opportunities for collective action to strengthen the peacebuilding field.
The irony was not lost on us that, around the time of this peacebuilding conference, horrific acts of violence were occurring across the world and in the United States. Globally, violent conflict is at a 25-year peak, undercutting global stability and development gains and driving record levels of forced displacement. United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres summed up the crisis well in his 2018 New Year message, proclaiming that we need “a red alert for our world.”
We need look no further than the violent conflicts in Syria and Yemen, violence and insecurity in Central America. Additionally, just in the past week, the United States witnessed attacks on African-Americans in a grocery store, Jewish worshippers in a synagogue, and political opposition leaders, media figures, and private citizens.
The Alliance for Peacebuilding calls on political, cultural, business, and religious leaders around the world and in the United States to condemn in the highest regard all political and identity-based violence and urges them to take concrete actions to promote non-violence within their respective communities.
Across the world, retaliatory cycles of political and identity-based violence pose among the greatest threats to safe, secure, and just communities. Levels of violence in the world are reaching critical proportions that, if not categorically rejected by leaders of multiple sectors and all political affiliations, risk spiraling out of control. We commend Land O’Lakes and Purina for recently ending support for an American political candidate who gives voice to hateful rhetoric. Still, as a global community, we need to do more to build sustainable peace.
AfP and its members are organizing a Coalition that aims to establish peacebuilding, in public discourse, politics, and policy, as the primary method for addressing violent conflict. The Coalition believes that if we develop a collective mission of popularizing peacebuilding, then we can shift public knowledge, political support, and policy toward peaceful solutions to violence.
If you are a political, cultural, business, or religious leader hoping to mitigate violence in your own community, or an organization seeking more resources, please reach out to AfP.
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