Prospects for Peace in Chechnya?


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Publication Conference Paper, other
Title Prospects for Peace in Chechnya?
Author Magnusson, Märta-Lisa
Editor Grünenfelder, Rita ; Krummenacher, Heinz
Date 2006
English abstract
What are the prospects for peace in Chechnya? Conflict dynamics suggest they are dim. While in official Russian discourse the situation in the war-torn republic is “normalizing”, realities on the ground suggest otherwise. Continued violations of human rights, well documented in reports by intergovernmental institutions such as the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, respected non-governmental organizations such as Human Rights Watch, the Russian “Memorial” and others, nourish growing fear and distrust towards Russia and its proxies. The social fabric of the Chechen society is disintegrating and the economic infrastructure of the republic is in ruins. A new generation of Chechen youth, which has experienced nothing but war and devastation, has emerged. Terrorism is proliferating and evidence suggests that the conflict is spreading outside Chechnya proper. Compared to the previous period of violent confrontation the configuration of parties today is more complex. Since the termination of the previous war in 1996, the internal coherence within the leadership of independence-seeking Chechnya, also called Ichkeriya, has eroded. Popular support for the Ichkeriya leaders is eroding as well. This has allowed the Russian side to pursue a strategy aimed at “internalizing” the conflict. While successful in terms of changing the power structures of the Chechen republic – and thereby its relationship to Russia – the “chechenization” strategy has undermined the possibilities for achieving a lasting peace. The strategy reflects an instrumentalist approach to the conflict relying on elite manipulation and co-optation as a means to establish peace. Peace in Chechnya, however, can only be obtained through negotiations involving the Russian Federation and representatives of the Chechen population endowed with political legitimacy.
Link (external link to publication)
Publisher Swisspeace
Host/Issue "Searching for Peace in Chechnya- Swiss Initiatives and Experiences". Swisspeace Conference Paper.;No. 1, 2006
ISBN 3-908230-64-0
Pages 4-13
Language eng (iso)
Subject Humanities/Social Sciences
Research Subject Categories::SOCIAL SCIENCES
Note Swisspeace Foundation Annual Conference November 8, 2005
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