Although informal and traditionally driven practices of mediation have existed for many generations, institutionalized and African-driven mediation became more important following the end of the Cold War. Mediation initiatives undertaken over the past 25 years, partly as a consequence of the increase in intra-state conflicts on the continent, have resulted in the generation of a deep body of knowledge and the evolution of a community of practitioners. This article examines two of the first post-1990 African-driven mediation processes – the Arusha Peace Process for Burundi and the Inter-Congolese Dialogue (icd) for the Democratic Republic of the Congo (drc) – to highlight key lessons that emerged, including the choice of mediator, who to include in the mediation, the impact of regional and international dynamics on the mediation, the importance and challenges of addressing the root causes of the conflict in a mediation process, and the role of non-state actors and Track ii diplomacy.
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