Libya programme

Context

Since the Revolution in 2011, Libya has gone through a series of political and military crises. This has led to significant, ongoing violence across the country and resulted in the creation of three different governments, each of which is competing for – but has so far failed to achieve – nation-wide legitimacy.

Our work

Our work in Libya focuses on strengthening the capacity of local leaders to manage conflict during the country’s political transition. We aim to reduce tensions within and between communities, as well as contributing to laying the foundations for a political settlement at the national level. 

Local leaders talk about the challenges of building peace within communities in Libya

How ordinary citizens experience conflict

Guns

VIOLENCE BETWEEN RIVAL AND ARMED GROUPS
Tensions and violence

TENSIONS AND VIOLENCE BETWEEN DIFFERENT TRIBAL AND ETHNIC GROUPS
Basic services

LACK OF BASIC SERVICES
Justice

LACK OF FUNCTIONING POLICE AND COURT SYSTEM
Divisions within country

DIVISIONS AND LIMITED FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT WITHIN THE COUNTRY

What we do to respond to these challenges

At The Local Level
•    Create a safe space in which groups that have been in conflict can slowly rebuild trust and dialogue.
•    Build working relationships and communication between community groups and local institutions, so that together they are better able to prevent conflict.
•    Help local authorities deliver services and improvements that make communities feel safer and more resilient, while also building trust in government.
•    Strengthen the skills of peacebuilders that are able to build bridges across divides.

At The National Level
•    Foster networking and collaboration opportunities between peacebuilders from across Libya, so that they can build relationships between different communities, learn from one another, and work together.
At The International Level
•    Help international governments, NGOs, multilateral agencies, and companies better understand how their work might contribute to either resolving or furthering conflict in Libya’s fast-changing, complex environment.

How it works in practice

Social Peace and Local Development Partnerships
Building relationships that make peace possible and durable
PCi has supported the establishment of Social Peace and Local Development (SPLD) Partnerships in 14 areas across Libya. The Partnerships bring together representatives of municipal councils, traditional authorities (tribal leaders, religious leaders), the police, civil society organisations, the private sector, and other relevant groups in the community. The aim of the Partnerships is to strengthen relationships horizontally (between different groups), as well as vertically (between local authorities and the community) to increase trust and reduce community tensions. 

Helping local leaders manage conflict more effectively

A team of 20 Trainer Mentors from the East, West and South of Libya has been skilled up to provide ongoing to support to the Partnerships and to strengthen their ability to monitor and manage community tensions. We have trained the group in 5 main areas:
1. Social Peace and Transformational Leadership
2. Coaching and mentoring
3. Mediation and negotiation
4. Gender sensitivity and inclusion of women and girls
5. Peacebuilding programme design and delivery

Improving people’s safety and trust in local institutions

The Partnerships deliver peace actions that build social cohesion and reduce violence, while building people’s trust in local authorities. The peace actions also enhance communities’ sense of safety and resilience by bringing tangible benefits to people, for example through better service delivery or improvements to the built environment.

Partnerships’ numbers

14 Social Peace and Local Development Partnerships in as many areas across Libya + 10 independently-generated Partnerships
500+ active Partnerships members
20 Trainer Mentors supporting the Partnerships 
18 Peace actions delivered

SOCIAL PEACE ACTIONS

Sebratha: a public building was rehabilitated by unemployed youth and then used to train community members in business management skills, with a view to increasing job opportunities and deter young men from being involved in fighting.
Bani Walid: a public park and playground was created to provide a safe recreational space for over 400 children. By bringing together local and internally displaced families, the park helps build trust and relationships across divides.
Tiji: a radio programme was launched allowing residents to report community issues to municipal authorities. Reports led to supermarket inspections, police patrols, and other interventions that help build trust in authorities.
Obari: a public building was renovated to be used as joint meeting centre by the three community groups (Tebu, Arabs and Tuareg), providing a neutral space to rebuild trust and work together to monitor tensions.

Libya Peacebuilding Practitioners Network

Connecting peacebuilders from different communities

Network’s numbers

44 Peacebuilding Practitioners Network members active in 26 areas across Libya
social peace actions delivered

The Peacebuilding Practitioners Network brings together 44 community leaders who have been involved in peace actions in 26 different areas across Libya. The Network provides a platform for reflecting on and learning from different experiences of peacebuilding, listening to different perspectives, and building trust across conflict divides. These meetings also provide opportunities to analyse local conflict contexts and success factors in effective peace actions, and to strengthen the Practitioners’ skills and knowledge on issues such as gender sensitivity and inclusion. 

SOCIAL PEACE ACTIONS

Bani Walid-Sabha: Network members from Bani Walid and Sabha worked together to deliver medical aid from Bani Walid to the Sabha local hospital, as this struggled to treat casualties following clashes between tribes. Bani Walid Elders backed the initiative and travelled to Sabha to deliver the goods, and finally endorsed the truce that was reached between the tribes.
Benghazi-Tripoli: Rugby 2018 brings together young players from the east and west of Libya under the motto ‘We play for unity’. As well as providing meaningful interaction opportunities that challenge stereotypes and build bridges across the conflict divide, the trainings deter young men from armed fighting and offer an enjoyable alternative to spend their time.
Sabha-Obari: Primary school teachers from Obari and Sabha were trained and skilled up to deal with racism and hate speech in the classroom. Trainings and exchange visits between the two cities brought together teachers from different ethnic groups, contributing to breaking down barriers and stereotypes that allow racist views to persist.

Conflict Sensitive Assistance Forum

Helping the international community build peace

A process to increase the conflict sensitivity of international assistance to Libya was established in October 2012, initially hosted by the Swiss Embassy to Libya. It is now driven by a Leadership Group of ten missions to Libya: African Union, Embassy of Germany, Embassy of The Netherlands, Embassy of Switzerland, Embassy of Turkey, Embassy of the United Kingdom, EU Delegation, UNDP, UNSMIL, and the World Bank.

The Leadership Group has agreed to implement and promote a set of principles for conflict sensitive assistance. According to these principles, assistance should:
1. Be delivered as inclusively as possible;
2. Strengthen the ability of our partners to be equally accountable across communities and constituencies;
3. Strengthen the connection between state institutions and communities across the country, by delivering tangible improvements.

The Leadership Group has agreed two formal mechanisms to promote conflict sensitivity:
1. Participatory Conflict Analysis Forum: it provides recommendations on how to adapt assistance to Libya on the basis of technical assessments from participating member organisations and input from Libyan expert voices.
2. Voluntary Peer Reviews: these provide opportunities for organisations working in a particular sector or area to examine the impact of their programmes on conflict, and to identify measures to improve their work and better contribute towards stabilisation.

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Resources

To download our Libya policy papers, research papers, and training materials, please visit the Resources page.