Getting Away with Murder? Government violence in state- and peacebuilding contexts

Political violence, exercised both by government and rebel forces, remains a significant feature of many peace- and statebuilding contexts, even after the conclusion of a peace agreement.

The project examines how this violence is understood, framed, and responded to by international actors. In particular it looks at international state- and peacebuilding interventions in two African countries – the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Cote d’Ivoire – and whether they frame and respond differently to violence by government forces than to violence by rebels.

Using events data to examine patterns of violence in both countries over time and analysing the regular reports to the UN Security Council from the peacekeeping missions (UNOCI, MONUC, and MONUSCO), it examines how violence by different actors has been discursively framed, and whether there are significant differences to the observed patterns of violence.

Lead researchers: Dominik Zaum with Corinne Heaven