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Preventing crises, managing conflicts, building peace – Federal Government policy guidelines

The new guidelines on crisis prevention, conflict management and peacebuilding were adopted by the Cabinet on 14 June 2017. They are the result of a broad‑based discussion in society with over 1800 participants at 27 events entitled PeaceLab2016 – A Fresh Look at Crisis Prevention.

You can find more than 100 interesting articles on the blog documenting this process. This goes to show that there is broad‑based interest in society regarding the question as to how Germany can become involved around the world in order to prevent or resolve armed conflict with civilian means. These important contributions to the debate have been taken into consideration in the interministerial coordination on the guidelines overseen by the Federal Foreign Office.

The guidelines now form the strategic basis for the Federal Government’s efforts to prevent crisises, manage conflicts and promote peace. The objective is to arrive at long‑term peace settlements. This is also in keeping with the spirit of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development to which Germany is committed. 

Values-based national interests – internationally agreed priorities 

Aid delivery by the International Red Cross at the Lebanese refugee camp Nahr al-Bared

Aid delivery by the International Red Cross at the Lebanese refugee camp Nahr al-Bared
© dpa/picture alliance

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Aid delivery by the International Red Cross at the Lebanese refugee camp Nahr al-Bared

Aid delivery by the International Red Cross at the Lebanese refugee camp Nahr al-Bared

Aid delivery by the International Red Cross at the Lebanese refugee camp Nahr al-Bared

Protecting people from infringements of their rights and fundamental freedoms is always the main priority of Germany’s efforts. The primacy of politics and prioritising prevention are our guiding principles. The Federal Government is drawing on the wide spectrum of civilian measures to this end.

While the guidelines are a national document, the New Deal agreed in 2011 among international donors together with fragile states is an important point of reference alongside the 2030 Agenda. In keeping with this, Germany’s policy is guided by five priorities:

  • Strengthening legitimate political structures
  • Creating a secure environment
  • Promoting the rule of law
  • Creating economic foundations and employment opportunities
  • Promoting effective governance and transparent public finances

Identifying crises at an earlier stage 

These guidelines are the catalyst for an adjustment of structures and procedures at Federal Government level. The Ministries will improve the coordination of the instruments of early crisis detection in order to be better prepared for possible escalations. The Federal Government is reviewing and continuing to develop the mechanisms of interministerial coordination of crises and conflicts.

A greater role for civil society – strengthening the Advisory Board for Civilian Crisis Prevention 

The Advisory Board for Civilian Crisis Prevention is an advisory body consisting of experts from the German Bundestag, civil society and academia. The Federal Government will submit pertinent initiatives to the Advisory Board in good time in the future. The body receives funding for drafting its own reports and holding events. 

Find out more:

Preventing crises, managing conflicts, building peace. The German Government policy guidelines (in German) (PDF, 1 MB)

Blog: Peace Lab

Agenda 2030


Last updated 15.06.2017

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