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Fleeing the peace: emigration after civil war

Flucht vor dem Frieden: Emigration aus Nachkriegsgesellschaften
[working paper]

Haaß, Felix; Kurtenbach, Sabine; Strasheim, Julia

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Corporate Editor GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies - Leibniz-Institut für Globale und Regionale Studien
Abstract Flight and emigration often continue despite the formal termination of war and significant international peace-building efforts because the international community often fails to address the root causes of flight and migration. Donors primarily aim at mitigating the direct consequences of war and pacifying elite groups rather than delivering peace dividends that benefit the broader population. The decision to flee during peacetime often closely relates to structural problems. Where peace is reduced to the mere absence of war and is of low quality, it is difficult to overcome major social cleavages. Thus the reasons for emigration persist. Three factors shape the quality of peace across specific contexts: (i) the level of violence beyond the recurrence of war, (ii) the degree of access to justice and political participation beyond a formal change of the political regime, and (iii) the generation of social and economic prospects and social mobi lity. Nepal and El Salvador are illustrative examples of the interplay of these factors at the interface between state and society. In these countries, state repression and other forms of violence persist, the political system is dominated by traditional elites or those that fought the war, and youths and former combatants lack prospects for the future. Policy Implications International actors need to adapt their strategies in post-war societies in a way that they support the broader population and not just the interests of the elite. While the termination of war and the introduction of democratisation might be first steps in this direction, they alone do not automatically lead to sustainable quality peace.
Keywords refugee; flight; emigration; cause; Nepal; El Salvador; political system; political elite; repression; violence; post-war society; peace process; reform policy; development aid; Latin America; South Asia
Classification Migration, Sociology of Migration; Peace and Conflict Research, International Conflicts, Security Policy
Document language English
Publication Year 2016
City Hamburg
Page/Pages 13 p.
Series GIGA Focus Global, 2
ISSN 1862-3581
Status Published Version; not reviewed
Licence Creative Commons - Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works