Context

Interpeace started working in Libya in 2011 with an in-depth actor and issue mapping process that covered the whole country. As a direct result of this engagement Interpeace developed a programme aiming at establishing an infrastructure for peace in Libya with a pilot phase in the South West. By 2014, a mapping process concluded with more than 500 Libyans consulted in the South, on their views of the obstacles to peace and stability in the country. However, by mid-2014 tensions between various Libyan political camps caused violence that spread from Tripoli to Benghazi and other parts of the country, which made it increasingly difficult for Interpeace to proceed with its programme activities as previously planned.

However, in the lead up to the signing of the Libyan Political Agreement (LPA), Interpeace resumed its engagement by the end of 2015 with a ‘peacemapping’ project. This study highlighted the numerous but less visible resilient Libyan communities that have remained relatively stable despite the conflict. It also shed light on factors that positively contribute towards this resilience, thereby indicating useful entry points for stabilization initiatives. Building on this research, the programme entered its second phase, which seeks to strengthen local capacity for resilience through dialogue and aims to expand into neighboring communities with the goal of gradually building pockets of stability across the country. These pockets of stability will directly contribute to and enforce any national or international level dialogue initiatives, since they will rely on local communities for their success.



Goal

The progamme seeks to strengthen intra- and inter-communal social cohesion by strengthening internal capacities for conflict management, fostering state-society relations through constructive exchanges between central authorities and local communities and contributing to the emergence of cohesive communities.



Reducing levels of conflict and violence

Between 2015 and 2016, six communities were covered by the peacemapping process. It has since grown to 13 communities where it has been leading regular consultative processes in the West and South. Consultations with various stakeholders and preparatory work is ongoing to expand further to an additional six communities in the East of the country. In 2018, the programme established a network of change agents, consisting of more than 50 community leaders / influencers from 12 communities in the West and South of Libya, who have been engaged and trained in conflict analysis and transformation, dialogue facilitation, conflict resolution, and are now leading efforts to reduce levels of conflict and violence within and between engaged communities, as well as strengthen intra- and inter-communal cohesion. Moreover, the culture of dialogue has been enhanced within and among communities engaged, some of the...

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