Natural resources – which, in many conflict-affected countries, fuel and finance armed groups – can also play a major role in bringing about sustainable peace, the United Nations today reported urging Governments and partners to integrate natural resource management in post-conflict reintegration programmes.
Incorporating natural resources in peacebuilding efforts can help to mitigate potential conflicts, such as disputes over land or water, and give green jobs to former soldiers, according to a joint report released today by UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the UN Environment Programme (UNEP).
“When helping former fighters and their communities to start new lives after a conflict, it is often critical to help them turn existing natural resources into economic opportunities,” said Jordan Ryan, UNDP Assistant Administrator and Director of the Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery.
“However, natural resources need to be managed properly as part of a well thought-out peace process,” he stressed in reference to minerals, oils, gas and timber.
According to ‘The Role of Natural Resources in Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration – Addressing Risks and Seizing Opportunities’, plans for the fair management and distribution of natural resources are usually excluded from peace negotiations and disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (DDR) programmes, which have become an integral part of the UN’s post-conflict peace consolidation over the last 20 years.
For more on this story, visit: United Nations News Centre – Environment should play greater role in peacebuilding, UN reports.