The Greater Horn of Africa
Pax Christi has had a long-standing commitment to peace and security for the Horn of Africa, especially to finding sustainable solutions for peace in Sudan. Pax Christi International was recently engaged in a multi-year Sudan Integrated Peacebuilding Programme, linking civil society organisations to promote peace and development, supporting efforts for community security, and lobbying international institutions on key policies affecting Sudan.
IKV Pax Christi Netherlands has also played an important role in supporting peace talks between the Government of Uganda and the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). The LRA has led an armed rebellion against Uganda’s government for more than 20 years.
The Greater Horn network is composed of partners from Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, and Uganda. Somalia and Eritrea are also points of ongoing concern for network members. As in the Great Lakes region, Pax Christi organises Regional Consultations to promote increased collaboration, build capacities of local organisations, and strategise for common action.
A Regional Coordinating Committee, drawn from the various constituent countries, gives direction to the network along with Bishop Paride Taban of Sudan. The Action Plan for the Greater Horn emphasises democracy, governance, conflict prevention, reconciliation, and human security. In a region where war, widespread insecurity, fraudulent elections, rampant corruption, and repressive government policies have shaped its recent history, these issues will remain particularly relevant for the years ahead.
Network Building in the Horn of Africa:
Beginning 2012, co-president and international staff travelled to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and met with the Ambassador to the African Union for Burundi, as well as with IFI, which is a platform for local communities to work on issues of concern locally through venues such as peace education, peace clubs, trust building through storytelling, visiting holy sites, and so on. Staff visited on 27-30 May 2012 Nairobi-based Pax Christi partners. This confirmed relevance of network membership in the Horn of Africa.
In 2010, network partners conducted an evaluation and strategy session to assess long-term viability of the relationship and to plan for the future. This visit reaffirmed the importance of network connections for building local capacities, for information-sharing, for collaboration at a regional level, for international advocacy, for education and for developing peace spirituality.