No. 3 Vol. LIV 2017

This issue focuses on the importance of fostering and maintaining a commitment to a culture of prevention. The articles provide a variety of perspectives on building and sustaining peace. They explore the relationship between conflict and crises, and themes such as the empowerment of civil society, media and information literacy, women’s role in ongoing peace processes, and desertification.

A9 highway in Kilinochchi District, Sri Lanka. © Indi Samarajiva
Nadhiya Najab, Anupama Ranawana and Kulasabanathan Romeshun

The Gates of Paradise are Open…but Who Benefits? Experiences from Post-War Sri Lanka

This article is written in response to the theme of eradicating poverty as a means of conflict prevention. By asking whether the eradication of poverty prevents conflict, we reflect upon its complexity and interdependence with other aspects of modern day life. To focus solely on poverty reduction as a means of conflict prevention is somewhat reductive.

Kapinga Yvette Ngandu

The Panel of the Wise:Its Role in Preventing Violent Conflicts in Africa

The Panel of the Wise's role in preventing the outbreak of violent conflicts in Africa was meant to provide information and analysis on the experiences, to date, of an important pillar of APSA. The objective was to discuss the gradual institutionalization of the Panel over the last 10 years and provide reflections that can inform the Panel's operations in the future.

Force Commander Lund. Cyprus, April 2015. © UNFICYP
Kristin Lund and Laura Mitchell

Preventing Crisis and Conflict: Women's Role in Ongoing Peace Processes

Women play a variety of roles in complex, multitrack peace processes. They can sit at the formal negotiating table, on a technical committee or subcommission, or they can be outside the talks engaged as civil society actors in following developments. All of these roles are critical.

Farid Zarif

Advancing the Debate on a Culture of Conflict Prevention

Prompt political interventions give time for actors in society to come to terms with change and think differently about old problems. For example, during the first half of 2016, UNMIL mobilized to diffuse potential conflict between Liberian Christian and Muslim communities which emerged from the country's constitutional review process promoting a constitutional amendment defining Liberia as a Christian nation.

A student protest demanding increased dialogue in decision-making processes at the National Autonomous University of Honduras, 2016. © CLADE Archives 
Camilla Croso

Empowering Civil Society in Latin America to Promote Equality and Prevent Conflict

Data shows that among the 25 countries with the highest rates of femicide in the world, 14 are in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC).The region also has very high rates of violence against the LGBTQ community, although it has some of the most progressive laws for LGBTQ equality and protection.

Global Nomads Group workshop on Virtual Reality during PLURAL+2016 Festival. © Hernan Valle
Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser

Media and Information Literacy as a Means of Preventing Violent Extremism

UNAOC understands that censoring media which is perceived as potentially harmful will not effectively curtail the spread of media messages appealing to youth with violent extremist narratives.

Elizabeth P. Buensuceso

The ASEAN Institute for Peace and Reconciliation and Its Role in Preventing Crises

AIPR is still in its formative stage. In the coming years, it has the potential to play a significant role in promoting knowledge sharing and policy recommendations to help foster peace and reconciliation and the prevention of crises in ASEAN.

Vinod Saighal

The Ingredients of Prevention

The present great power policies are not conducive to peace in the world. A continuance of these policies threatens to dismantle the existing global order and plunge the world into deepening distress—for human beings as well as for the health of the planet.

Maher Nasser


With this issue of the UN Chronicle, we hope to help inform the discussion on the culture of prevention, and contribute to the objective of strengthening and sustaining peace and security, human rights, the rule of law, and development, for current and future generations.

Secretary-General António Guterres addresses the Security Council ministerial-level open debate on conflict prevention and sustaining peace.  10 January 2017, United Nations, New York. ©UN Photo/Rick Bajornas
António Guterres

Meeting the Prevention Challenge

Preventing human suffering and ensuring progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are primarily the responsibility of Member States. But the United Nations has a vital supporting role. We need to become much better at it, building trust with Member States and all stakeholders. I see us doing this in four ways: a surge in preventive diplomacy; bold efforts to implement the Agenda 2030 and Sustaining Peace; strengthened partnerships; and comprehensive reforms to overcome fragmentation and consolidate our capacities to deliver.

Men from a community of displaced persons who rented land for the rainy season in Dali close to Tawila, fleeing the heavy fighting that took place in Shangil Tobaya, North Darfur in 2011. © UN Photo/Albert González Farrán
Monique Barbut

A Way Back

We can jump-start economic and employment opportunities for young people and rural populations by creatively building on the sustainable development and inclusive growth opportunities laid out in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The Initiative on Sustainability, Stability and Security (3S) in Africa launched in 2016 by Morocco and Senegal is a good example.

Rashid Alimov

The Role of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in Counteracting Threats to Peace and Security

The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) was established as a multilateral association to ensure security and maintain stability across the vast Eurasian region, join forces to counteract emerging challenges and threats, and enhance trade, as well as cultural and humanitarian cooperation.