New Worldwatch Article on Peacemaking after Disasters

When disaster strikes a country already reeling from conflict, international aid and development agencies must be mindful of those who will profit from continuing conflict, write Worldwatch researchers Michael Renner and Zoë Chafe in a new article published in the Natural Hazards Observer journal. Reflecting on the experiences of three tumultuous regions crippled by conflict and then by disaster—Sri Lanka, the Aceh region of Indonesia, and Kashmir—Renner and Chafe point out that strong political leadership is key to furthering peace.

As expanding human populations strain against the ecological safety nets that have provided protection from disasters, poor people—and those living amidst intense environmental degradation—will be hardest hit. Their voices need to be heard. Post-disaster assistance in conflict zones should spotlight civil society perspectives, while simultaneously addressing the root causes of conflict and pressing towards demilitarization.

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