Coronavirus and Conflict: The Security Sector Response

As the coronavirus pandemic sweeps the globe, troubling developments about how security forces are responding have been reported from places already mired in violence and conflict. In the Middle East and Latin America, police are using mandates to keep people at home to crack down on human rights. And in Africa, peace processes are at risk of breaking down as peacekeepers become restricted in their movements. Meanwhile, local activists and peacebuilders everywhere cannot easily come together to organize and push back on abuses. Urgently addressing the interaction between virus and conflict is crucial if we want to help communities emerge from COVID-19 with resilience and hope.

Join USIP for an event that will look at creative solutions on how to respond to the confluence of coronavirus and conflict. USIP President and CEO Nancy Lindborg will share lessons from her experience responding to Ebola in West Africa and discuss why COVID-19 is a unique challenge to conflict-affected regions. This will be followed by a panel discussion with experts from around the world on how security sectors are responding to coronavirus, how local communities are making their voices heard, and what practical interventions we can take now to stem unnecessary suffering later.

Take part in the conversation on Twitter with #COVIDandConflict.

Nancy Lindborg, introductory remarks
President and CEO, U.S. Institute of Peace

Frances Z. Brown
Fellow for Democracy, Conflict, and Governance, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

Isioma Kemakolam
Justice and Security Dialogue Program Coordinator, Nigeria, U.S. Institute of Peace

Jeremy Konyndyk
Senior Policy Fellow, Center for Global Development

Amany Qaddour
Regional Director, Syria Relief & Development

Dr. Albrecht Schnabel
Head of the Asia-Pacific Unit, DCAF – Geneva Centre for Security Sector Governance

Sarah Holewinski, moderator
Jennings Randolph Senior Fellow, U.S. Institute of Peace

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The United States Institute of Peace is a national, nonpartisan, independent institute, founded by Congress and dedicated to the proposition that a world without violent conflict is possible, practical, and essential for U.S. and global security. In conflict zones abroad, the Institute works with local partners to prevent, mitigate, and resolve violent conflict. To reduce future crises and the need for costly interventions, USIP works with governments and civil societies to help their countries solve their own problems peacefully. The Institute provides expertise, training, analysis, and support to those who are working to build a more peaceful, inclusive world.

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