Armed Violence Reduction and the UN Millennium Development Goals
Armed violence is a major obstacle for human development everywhere it occurs. Each year armed fighting and minor conflicts cost the lives of hundreds of thousands of men, women and children and injure millions more. The price of armed violence is paid not only by the dead and injured but also by the families left behind. When a community, or even a whole state, is affected by armed violence it has dire consequences for the society at large. It naturally affects the actual security situation but the psychological effects of a perceived threat can be just as devastating by halting subsistence activities and reducing investment and general economic activity, which again falls back on the individual family.
Although the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) do not directly state reduction of armed violence as a target, armed violence impedes humanitarian and socio-economic development and thus acts as an obstruction to achieving the MDGs. With the broad support for the Geneva Declaration on Armed Violence and Development and the Oslo Commitments on Armed Violence the international community has acknowledged this fact.
Danish Demining Group (DDG) advocates for the need to acknowledge that prevention and reduction of armed violence, as part of improving overall safety and security, is paramount, if a community is to facilitate and encourage human development for the benefit of its people. DDG is thus actively supporting the realisation of the Geneva Declaration and the Oslo Commitments and is a co-signatory of the “Charter on Peace and Security: The World We Want” which emphasises the need to coordinate security and armed violence reduction with the MDGs and calls on governments to take concrete steps to address armed violence.
DDG co-hosted the Conference on Armed Violence Reduction and Development in Eastern Africa in Nairobi, November 2010. Read more here.