NP Conducts an Unarmed Civilian Protection Orientation in Lamitan

Isabela City, Basilan. October 31, 2017. The Nonviolent Peaceforce (NP) conducted yesterday a one day orientation on Unarmed Civilian Protection with local partners in Lamitan, Basilan.

Unarmed Civilian Protection (UCP) refers to the use of unarmed civilians to do “peace keeping” which is preventing, reducing and stopping violence.

NP is a member of International Monitoring Team (IMT) of the civilian component of the GPH-MILF Peace process. 

According to Lemuel Artiago, NP Regional Program Officer, one of its mandates is to monitor the ceasefire agreement particularly the unarmed civilians which are the most vulnerable group during the eruption of conflict.

Mr. Artiago said, “The objective of this orientation is to enhance and strengthen the collaboration between the NP and the local partners or stakeholders such as NGOs, CSO, Women groups and etc. but not the terrorist groups”. 

The local partners in attendance were more than 20 from different NGOs, CSOs, Women groups including the LMT & CCCH of MILF Basilan.

“It is a common assumption that only armed military or police can do work of peacekeeping, but unarmed civilians has been successfully ‘keeping the peace’ in the situations of violent conflict all over the world and their numbers are increasing. There are some NGOs & GOs that engaged in UCP using variety of approaches and NP is engaged in a 3rd generation or 3G UCP”, said Mr. Artiago.

“Therefore, the primacy of the local actors is of paramount importance to solving violent conflict in a community where a lot of groups exist”, Mr. Artiago stressed.