For the last two decades, Guinea-Bissau has experienced major political turmoil, with successive coups and recurrent confrontations between political authorities and the military and within the political sphere. State dysfunctionality has a strong negative impact on the country’s society at large, as well as on international support to civil society, inhibiting sustainable peacebuilding and development. However, despite the political instability, the social tissue and the national identity remain strong: no consistent episodes of violence or disruption of the armed forces or between different groups in the society have been reported in the last years. This represents a significant improvement in the recent history of the country.
In 2007, Interpeace set up a peacebuilding programme in collaboration with a local partner, . Through a national consultation process, Voz di Paz engaged over 6,000 Bissau-Guineans to identify the main obstacles to lasting peace in the country. Bissau-Guineans identified the lack of effective state institutions, political and institutional instability, poor administration of justice, social exclusion and a weak culture of dialogue as some of the root causes of conflict. As a result of this foundational study, the programme currently works in two main axes: conflict prevention and resolution and good governance.