In a reversal of past policy, Burma’s government last week signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the United Nations to facilitate the repatriation of Rohingya refugees back to Burma. This unexpected move builds on the momentum established last month, when Burma hosted a United Nations Security Council (UNSC) delegation and invited the U.N. to assist in the repatriation of the Rohingya and the rehabilitation of Rakhine state.
Our guest on this episode is USIP Research Fellow, Zinaida Besirevic, a Ph.D. candidate in human development and cognition at the University of California, Berkeley. Her dissertation compares children and adults in their reasoning about violations of Human Rights and infringements on human dignity. Together we discuss if moral reasoning changes with development, and whether and why we become more likely to tolerate harm.
In an American political culture coarsened by belligerence, dozens within Congress still are shaping bipartisan foreign policies to maintain a strong U.S. defense of human rights worldwide. The ability of Congress to sustain bipartisanship on human rights issues is vital to long-term international stability and U.S. national security.
One hundred years after Nelson Mandela’s birth, his example calls nations and political elites to examine their failings in providing justice and hope to people worldwide, said Cheryl Carolus, Mandela’s colleague in the movement that toppled South Africa’s apartheid regime. Amid warfare across the globe, and alienated voters roiling the politics of democracies, “maybe it is fortuitous that we are confronted with these challenges in the centenary year of Nelson Mandela,” Carolus said, delivering USIP’s inaugural Nelson Mandela Lecture. “Maybe we will remind ourselves that peace can only reign and endure if there is justice and equality.”
Following attacks on police posts by an armed Rohingya militia in August 2017, reprisals by the Burmese government have precipitated a humanitarian crisis. More than six hundred thousand Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh, where they face an uncertain future. Publicly stating that the root cause of conflict in Rakhine is...
In the aftermath of attacks by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army and subsequent military clearance operations, two competing narratives have emerged. One frames the attacks as a critical threat to national security and the majority cultural-religious status quo. The second focuses on the human cost...
The prisoners would be arriving soon and Adriana Combita, like a young teacher preparing to greet a new class, was nervous. This was not the first time that Combita, 26, had led a peacebuilding training with soldiers convicted of war-related crimes. But these were senior officers, commanders with master’s degrees, military officials who had lived abroad.
Former UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon and current UN Secretary-General António Guterres have both recognized sexual exploitation and abuse (SEA) by interveners as a risk to peacekeeping operations, which has led to a series of new policy responses. As institutions begin to adopt new...
Evidence indicates that women participants in peace processes are usually focused less on the spoils of the war and more on reconciliation, economic development, education and transitional justice – all critical elements of a sustained peace.
The indisputable fact of the unfolding Rohingya crisis is that more than 600,000 people have been forced to flee across the Burmese border into Bangladesh since August, with terrible reports of rape and ethnic cleansing. Beyond that, however, the facts of what happened — and how — dissolve into confusing and competing narratives, underscoring the difficulty of resolving a complex and long simmering conflict.