Armed Actors, Transnational Justice and Peace Diplomacy
In this New Voices in Global Security Studies seminar, Sophie Haspeslagh discusses how non-state armed groups engage in international affairs. Sophie’s talk argues that rebels have a foreign policy which plays a fundamental role in their transition from war to peace.
Kerry-Luis Prior will examine the victim centred transitional justice approach of the 2016 peace agreement with Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia—Ejército del Pueblo - Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) and will compare the practitioner’s idea behind some of the transitional justice concepts and the local perception of those declared victims.
Dr Sophie Haspeslagh – International Relations of Non-Armed State Groups - The case of ETA’s peace diplomacy
Many non-state armed groups engage in sophisticated international affairs, such as maintaining bilateral relations with foreign states, engaging in multistakeholder diplomacy, cooperating with international organisations and humanitarian agencies, mobilising transnationally, and liaising with other armed groups around the world. International Relations as a discipline has, however, shown limited interest in the study of the foreign policy of non-state armed groups.
Sophie’s Hapeslagh's talk argues that rebels have a foreign policy which plays a fundamental role in their transition from war to peace. Taking the case of the separatist organisation Euskadi Ta Askatasuna (ETA) or "Basque Homeland and Liberty" in the Basque country, based on personal interviews, Sophie generates theoretical lessons on the international relations of non-state armed groups. Moving away from the idea that non-state actors merely mimic the state, she also homes in on the important role played by emotions in understanding their foreign policies.
Sophie Haspeslagh, is a lecturer in International Relations in the Department of War Studies at King’s College London. Sophie focuses on the impact of counterterrorism on conflict resolution and the transition of armed actors away from violence. Her latest book, Proscribing Peace: How listing armed groups as terrorists hurts negotiations (Manchester University Press 2021) explores the effects of proscription on mediation and peace processes.
Kerry-Luise Prior – Colombia: a victim centred transitional justice approach, between local perception and wishful thinking.
Kerry-Luise Prior will examine the victim centred transitional justice approach of the 2016 peace agreement with FARC-EP (Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia—Ejército del Pueblo - Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) and will compare the practitioner’s idea behind some of the transitional justice concepts and the local perception of those declared victims. Transitional justice refers to mechanisms used in a period of change from conflict to peace, characterised by legal and social responses to confront past violence.
Kerry’s research is based on extensive field research, including interviews with civilian victims, perpetrators, experts, and individuals working with victims and institutions. By amplifying the voices of those directly affected and providing insights from various stakeholders, she offers a nuanced understanding of the perception of the transitional justice mechanisms in rural Norte de Santander.
Kerry-Luise Prior is a PhD candidate with the War Studies Department at King’s College London. She has worked with NGOs in Colombia, with the GIZ and the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in Costa Rica, with PBI (Peace Brigades International) in London, as well as with the EU Delegation to Singapore on human rights issues in the ASEAN region. Her PhD project examines the accountability mechanisms proposed in the 2016 peace agreement between the FARC-EP and the Colombian government and further examines the acceptance and disapproval of the mechanisms offered in the peace process by various groups within Colombia. It adds to the field and framework of transitional justice by asking how the acceptance of justice and accountability mechanisms within a transitional justice process can lead to future long term peace.
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