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Religion Conflict CSS Blog

Mediation Perspectives: The Contested Power of Religious Narratives in Conflict

Image courtesy of Wikicommons. The standoff between armed members of the Branch Davidian group and the FBI in Waco, Texas, descends into violence.

Mediation Perspectives is a regular series of blog contributions by the CSS Mediation Support Team and occasional guest authors.

To what extent do religious narratives shape conflict behavior? Many scholars agree that narratives are important: People get angry when they perceive injustice, they reach out for stories to help explain why that injustice exists, and then some of those stories propose or rationalize violence as a solution to the injustice. For this reason, peacebuilders should seek to understand religious narratives as possible framings of a given context of conflict.

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Religion Conflict Peace CSS Blog

Countries that Experienced Armed Conflict with Religious Dimensions

This graphic maps out the various countries that experienced armed conflicts with religious dimensions. To find out more about the interlinkages of religion and conflict and how conflict resolution approaches should respond, see Jonas Baumann, Daniel Finnbogason, and Isak Svensson’s CSS Policy Perspective here. For more graphics on conflict resolution, see the CSS’ collection of graphs and charts on the subject here.

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Religion Conflict CSS Blog

Church Constellations in Ukraine

While religious issues are not the primary drivers of the conflict in and around Ukraine, religion has played a significant role in it. This graphic provides an overview of church constellations in Ukraine, including autocephalous, canonical (recognized) or with debated status.

For insights on the religious dimensions of the Ukraine conflict, read Cora Alder, Palwasha Kakar and Leslie Minney’s CSS Analyses in Security Policy here.

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Conflict Peace CSS Blog

Development of Yearly Homicide Rate in Colombia

Colombia was one of the most violent countries until the early 2000s, with a yearly homicide rate above 70 per 100,000 inhabitants. This stands in contrast to the global average of roughly six and the European average of one. This graphic provides a comparison of the development of homicide rates in Colombia between the national level, areas with previous FARC presence & illicit crop substitution areas, from 2010 to 2019.

For insights on the Colombian peace process, see CSS’ Enzo Nussio’s CSS Analysis in Security Policy here.

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Conflict CSS Blog

Selected Urban Conflicts

This graphic provides an overview of recent military conflicts and long lasting protests in cities around the world. For insights on how urban areas are becoming primary battlefields in conflicts, see Niklas Masuhr’s addition to the CSS Analyses in Security Policy series here.