How to Resolve Ethnic Conflicts


Conflicts between ethnic communities are matters of great concern, which many governments prefer tackling peacefully. The loyalty towards one’s ethnic identity can be powerful enough to drive many people to the extent where they do things which appear to be senseless and pointless. The root cause of a conflict is a basic misunderstanding regarding the basic functioning of society.

For a long period of time, the British portion of Northern Ireland had to struggle with the conflicts between the two sections of Protestants and Catholics in the region. Protestants always used to get better job and had a better lifestyle whereas the Catholics were generally deprived of jobs and opportunities. This made the two groups hostile to each other, but because of the efforts of groups from both outside and inside of Great Britain, the violence was controlled.  Although, the situation is still tensed and there is a lot of inequality in terms of lifestyle and opportunities, this story is a good example of resolving misunderstandings through a proper dialogue between the conflicting groups.

Africa has got the worst impact of recent violence between ethnic groups.  Sudan has been under limelight in recent years because of continuing genocide which has been the reason for shifting of millions of Darfurians and also for the deaths of many. The conflict is there between the Arabic Sudanese of the north and the Sub-Saharan Sudanese of the south, south of the Khartoum – capital city of Sudan, because of inborn differences, mainly of culture.

There are still more parts of Africa which are in unrest currently. The commonly called “blood diamonds” – a topic of critically-praised films – are the gems which have fueled the conflicts and wars in Liberia. The rest of the world gets what is used for a fine piece of jewelry, while many people in Liberia labor with sweat, tears and blood for these decorations for our jewelry.

What makes Africa most vulnerable for ethnic violence is the division of the continent by the Europeans without paying heed to the existence of different tribes and ethnic groups, within the subdivisions they made. Now as most of the countries are breaking away from the colonizers, they are now in a state of confusion because of a highly uneven nation. The people don’t have much in common. Whatever it is, their cooking technique or their taste for silver jewelry, there is a difference, and such ordinary things can lead to burning of a village. Another example of a genocide having ethnic basis happened in Rwanda in the last decade. This was greatly ignored by the world community.

Ethnic conflicts have now become a reality of life and are reoccurring over and over again. The present and coming generations should try to come over the disparities and establish peace.

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About the Author: Bruno Silva is an entrepreneur from Portugal with over 15 years of experience in Online Marketing. He is also a blogger and writes on variety of topics from online marketing to designs, cars to loans, etc.

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