22 Geo. Int'l Envtl. L. Rev. 755 (2009-2010)
Transition to Peace: Examining Divergent Approaches to Enacting Post-Conflict Environmental Laws in Afghanistan and El Salvador

handle is hein.journals/gintenlr22 and id is 763 raw text is: ESSAY
Transition to Peace:
Examining Divergent Approaches to Enacting
Post-Conflict Environmental Laws in
Afghanistan and El Salvador
MISHKAT AL MouMiN*
INTRODUCTION
A post-conflict situation occurs in a country immediately after a major military
operation has ended, and features ongoing-although relatively small-scale-
violence, a damaged social fabric, and a restive population.' In post-conflict
situations environmental resources are used not only to meet basic needs, such as
drinking water, but also to provide for the population's livelihood, for example by
the timber industry. In Afghanistan, 80% of the population relies directly on
natural resources to meet its daily needs.2 According to the World Bank, in 44%
* Adjunct Professor, George Mason University. Dr. Al Moumin served as the first Minister of the
Environment in Iraq from 2004-2005. She is the founder and the CEO of Women and the Environment
Organization, a UN funded organization that works among rural women in Iraq. She is a fellow at the Center for
Advanced Defense Studies, the Middle East Institute, and the Environmental Law Institute. She holds a
master's degree and Ph.D. in public international law from the University of Baghdad. Additionally, she earned
a master's degree in public administration from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard
University. © 2010, Mishkat Al Moumin.
1. A joint group of experts from the World Bank, United Nations Development Programme, and United
Nations Development Group define a post-conflict situation as a fragile peace where the country lacks security
and political stability. U.N. DEy. PROGRAMME ET AL., PRACTICAL GUIDE TO MULTILATERAL NEEDS ASSESSMENTS
IN POST-CONFLICT SITUATIONS, Glossary, 2 (2004), available at http://www.undp.org/cpr/documents/prevention/
integrate/PostConflictNeedsAssessmentmethodology.pdf. They considered countries such Timor-Leste,
Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Iraq, and Liberia to be post-conflict situations. Id. at 1. Although they estimate that the
post-conflict situation will last for two years in general, the post-conflict situation ends when the country
transitions successfully to peace or relapsesnflict. Id. at Glossary. Gerd Junne and Willemijn Verkoren define
post-conflict situations as conflict situations, in which open warfare has come to an end. Such situations remain
tense for years and decades and can easily relapse into a large-scale violence. Gerd Junne & Willemijn
Verkoren, The Challenges of Postconflict Development, in POsTcONFLiCr DEVELOPMENT: MEETING NEw CHAL-
LENGES 1, 1 (Gerd Junne & Willemijn Verkoren eds., 2005). Thus, the post-conflict situation features conflict
and tension for years until the country transitions to peace or relapses to conflict.
2. Press Release, U.N. Environment Programme (UNEP), Environmental Legislation Comes of Age in
Afghanistan (Jan. 3, 2006), available at http://www.unep.org/Documents.MultilingualVDefault.asp?Document
ID=466&ArticleID= 5100&l=en.

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