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How, and to whom, are donors accountable in peace work?

On the 20th of December leaders of many civil society and faith based organisations in Kachin and Shan States released an 'Urgent Appeal' to the NLD government.

It calls on the NLD 'to take immediate action to halt military offensives, protect the lives of internally-displaced persons and local citizens whose lives are at extreme threat, and prioritize the achievement of nationwide peace that it promised upon taking office'.

yet the Appeal also gives a direct challenge to international donors who are working on peace in Myanmar.

Kachin and Shan leaders claim that 'during the past five years, the international peace industry has neglected the deteriorating crisis in northeast Myanmar while concentrating on peace initiatives elsewhere. This has been a major error and fails to understand the political crisis in our country'.

This highlights the question that we have raised in our PK Forum series on donor accountability in the peace process - how, and to whom, are international donors accountable to in their work on peace?

These civil society and faith based organisation leaders from Kachin and Shan are clearly expressing dissatisfaction with the way the 'international peace industry' is working.

How then do international donors respond?

Amidst the many voices engaged in the peace process in Myanmar, who needs to be satisfied with the way donors are attempting to influence the process?

How much weight do the voices of Kachin and Shan civil society leaders have when compared with the NLD government, or armed groups leaders, or civil society groups from other ethnic groups?

In the coming weeks we talk to a range of donor representatives and civil society actors about how they make sense of these questions.

What does it mean for donor agencies to be accountable in the peace process?

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