Interfaith networks in conflict situations


Social networks can also be particularly useful in conflict situations, both in surviving immediate threats and in rebuilding communities post-conflict. Ewert (for literature reference see original source document) describes how an inter-faith and inter-community humanitarian assistance programme in Syria was critical in building social cohesion and consequently may have also saved lives. In Syria, pre-2014, the Lebanese Forum for Development, Culture and Dialogue formed an interfaith network to organise and distribute humanitarian assistance in Qalamoun. At one point, “forces aligned with the opposition” took control of vehicles. Muslims in the interfaith network transported non-Muslims to safe villages, in their own vehicles, when it was felt too unsafe that they remain. On another occasion, a Syrian Orthodox church was guarded by the DeirAttieh’s Muslim community, who barred entry to militants. Ewert suggests that it was the inter-faith collaboration that led to these actions of social solidarity.

Note: See source document for full reference.

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