The main objective of the essay "Role of NGOs and Humanitarian Organizations in Peace Building" is to demonstrate how humanitarian organizations and human rights groups could assume major roles in peacekeeping and peacebuilding in conflict situations…
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Usually, NGOs or the development community has struggled to stay away from conflict situations. Concentrating instead on their development and humanitarian operations, aid groups have regarded themselves and their subsidies to be impartial and nonpartisan (Church, 2004, 23-24). Current scholarships on Somalia and Rwanda, though, have seriously challenged this view (Carey & Richmond, 2003,136). For instance, Peter Uvin (1998, 3) has studied the relationship of development assistance with the forces and mechanisms that resulted in the genocide in Rwanda in 1994. “In countries like Rwanda,” he states in Aiding Violence: The Development Enterprise in Rwanda, “where development aid provides a large share of the financial and moral resources of government and civil society, development aid cannot help but play a crucial role in shaping the process that leads to violence” (Uvin, 1998, 3).
Another author, Michael Marin, has illustrated a much more threatening picture in the case of humanitarian intervention in Somalia all through the 1980s, concluding that development and humanitarian aid is mainly useless and unintentionally detrimental and that it circulates a system of hostility, corruption, and dependency (Cutter, 2001, 210). Hence, if the humanitarian intervention has the capability of inflicting even more suffering on the people and communities already exposed to hostilities, as these authors seem to claim, then should we dispose of development aid and humanitarian intervention altogether? In Mary Anderson’s perceptive and sensible book Do No Harm: How Aid Can Support Peace-or War, she retorts: “It is a moral fallacy to conclude that because aid can do harm, the decision not to give aid would not do harm” (Anderson, 1999, 23).
A collaborative endeavor of international donor agencies, United Nations organizations, NGOs, and other delegates of the international development and humanitarian community Do No Harm examines the experiences of the people struggling to provide development aid and humanitarian assistance in conflict regions in order to enhance intervention (Cutter, 2001, 210).
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