, Afghanistan (PressExposure) June 11, 2009 -- Local conflict is increasing in Afghanistan at a rate faster than that of the insurgency and armed conflict, Afghan charity and research institute Cooperation for Peace and Unity (CPAU) said today as it published a wide-ranging report analysing conflict in the country.
Local conflicts involving land and water are contributing to instability across large parts of Afghanistan as local communities struggle to survive in the context of a worsening security situation.
The new report, âTrends in local Afghan conflictsâ, is based on CPAU's research into local conflict in five provinces in Afghanistan, analysing the current situation and developments over the past four years.
It reveals that there has been a significant increase in local conflicts since 2005, and that conflicts are increasingly involving whole communities. These developments are threatening the livelihoods of communities, and undermining the ability of the government, development and aid agencies to work effectively.
CPAUâs findings also indicate that local conflicts are likely to escalate, partly as a result of the on-going insurgency and partly because social and governance structures are coming under increasing stress from the deteriorating general security situation.
âLocal conflict is affecting many communities which struggle to find suitable ways of resolving their disagreements. Many of these conflicts turn violent and they are being aggravated by the worsening security situation in Afghanistan,â said CPAUâs Director Kanishka Nawabi, Director.
CPAU has also found that the actions of the international community, including development agencies, can exacerbate and increase local conflicts. In several cases the implementation of development projects has led to water and land disputes that have threatened local peopleâs ability to support themselves.
âThe international community has an obligation to ensure that its programmes in Afghanistan do not increase local conflict and make the situation worse for local people,â said CPAUâs Director Kanishka Nawabi.
Peace building and conflict resolution projects which would help communities resolve their conflicts less violently are currently not large enough to cope with the massive demand and are currently only implemented in a handful of Afghanistanâs 34 provinces.
Improving local peopleâs access to justice and non-violent conflict resolution through peace building is key to promoting stability and ensuring local peopleâs livelihoods.
CPAU is calling on the international community, particularly development agencies, to ensure that the programmes they support in Afghanistan address local conflict.
This should include additional funding for peace building and conflict resolution, including a new training programme for charity workers, as well as making conflict sensitivity a core element of existing and future programmes.
â¢ Cooperation for Peace and Unity (CPAU) is an Afghan charity that works alongside communities to promote non-violent conflict resolution and peace building. CPAU has been running since 1996 and is supported by a number of donor organisations including DfID, Oxfam NOVIB and Trocaire. For more information see http://www.cpau.org.af â¢ âTrends in local Afghan conflictsâ is part of a 160-page study focusing on Badakhshan, Kunduz, Kabul, Wardak and Ghazni. Research was conducted by CPAU with the financial support of Trocaire.