Security and Conflict Management in the African Borderlands: A People-centred Approach

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By Dominic Naish, 24 Apr 2017

Borders and borderlands in Africa are spaces where the nexus of security, development, crime, conflict and politics is often at its most dynamic. In theory, borders serve to demarcate states’ territory, and the movement of goods and people across them are managed in the interests of national trade and security. In practice, African borders are often little more than notional lines across huge stretches of land or water. This article examines the increasing prominence of border security in policy discussions and introduces the “people-centred” approach to border management expounded by the Danish Demining Group (DDG). DDG has worked in cross-border contexts in both East Africa and West Africa and the article compares its impact in each location, highlighting the community-first ethos of the organisation’s programming. Drawing on the lessons learned from both regions, the article concludes with reflections on the strengths, successes and areas for improvement and expansion in people-centred border security and management.

Full article available at: https://www.accord.org.za/conflict-trends/security-conflict-management-african-borderlands/