What is AMIP?
The Afghanistan Mechanism for Inclusive Peace (AMIP) is an open, accessible, Afghan-driven mechanism that will provide a structured, neutral and non-partisan way for the Afghan public to play an active and central role in building a significantly more inclusive peace process and peace.
AMIP will bring together the concerns and desires of all Afghans by supporting and conducting consultations, collating existing research and data from across the country – in addition to conducting its own polling and sentiment analysis to fill in any existing gaps – to ensure maximum access and reach to the negotiating table for the public. AMIP could also provide a platform for the public to address the negotiators in person. Another key function of AMIP is to ensure that the Afghan public can access and stay informed about the progress and agenda items at the negotiations table.
Who is involved with AMIP?
AMIP has been developed and established by a consortium of Afghan civil society representatives, including local, cultural and religious leaders, women, youth, and victims from across Afghanistan to provide a structured, neutral and non-partisan pathway between Afghan citizens and those negotiating on their behalf.
AMIP has a large and established network of civil society partners throughout Afghanistan and will use these networks to reach the regional, provincial and district levels in Afghanistan, supported by the Secretariat (headed by AMIP’s Co-directors), a Technical Advisory board and a Steering Committee. AMIP will structure its outreach through its Regional Nodes/Hubs and Provincial Networks that will ensure AMIP has country-wide reach.
AMIP will work with, strengthen and build on the existing work of civil society, initiatives and projects to amplify the concerns and desires of all Afghans in relation to the peace process.
When was AMIP developed and launched?
AMIP has been developed in response to wide-spread, diverse and continued calls from Afghan civils society for a mechanism that can ensure the inclusion of all Afghans in the peace process. AMIP has been working to create and develop a stable structure and solid network of civil society to stand as a strong national structure since 2019.
As part of its development, AMIP conducted consultations with 150 civil society groups and organisations across Afghanistan; gathered and summarised key research on the Afghan peace process and conducted an advocacy event in Brussels in March 2020, where a diverse selection of civil society members from Afghanistan made direct presentations to senior EU officials on the need for an inclusive peace process. As a result of the consultations in Afghanistan, including with religious leaders, women, youth, and victims from across the country, Afghan diaspora in Europe and summary of three-years of research, AMIP produced a “Living Principles”. These are a guide for the negotiations teams and third parties to focus on the essential issues, mechanisms and negotiating principles that need to be put in place in order to bring about a permanent ceasefire, the restoration of regular public administration and services to the entire Afghan population, as well as the return of Afghanistan to a peaceful and inclusive political transition. You can read the Living Principles here.
Where will AMIP work?
AMIP will structure its outreach by using seven Regional Nodes/Hubs, that then connect to thirty-four provincial networks, who in turn connect to the district level. (See diagram below). The Regional Nodes/Hubs and Provincial Networks will ensure AMIP has country-wide reach, and is not simply Kabul-centric. AMIP will use the cascading method to ensure it does not duplicate what civil society is already doing, and will instead simply act as a focal point to coordinate and transfer the results of existing efforts.
Why is AMIP needed?
Communities, organisations and individuals across Afghanistan have been peace-building for decades in different ways and at various levels. Whether through education initiatives, sports programmes, or art, the Afghan people’s desire for peace has been unwavering and unquestionable. AMIP recognises that there is a huge diversity of voices in Afghanistan, and that creating the conditions for sustainable peace require wide participation and inclusion of all who want to have their concerns and desires heard.
The key function of AMIP is to offer multiple ways of connecting to AMIP, including via consultations, direct contact, its multi-lingual digital platform, its texting and voicemail service, and directly through its regional offices, with country-wide reach and a presence in provinces and districts across the country. In addition, AMIP will collate and analyse sentiment analysis, existing and new data on public perceptions such as surveys and polling, and where possible, disaggregates data by category to make sure minority issues are not left out. Significantly, AMIP is actively working to engage members of marginalised and minority communities to develop differentiated strategies for participation that account for the barriers facing specific groups of individuals.
AMIP will work to ensure that there is a direct pathway between the Afghan people and the negotiating table, to ensure not just an inclusive process, but also an inclusive outcome.
AMIP is supported by the European Union as an independent mechanism. Furthermore, the EU has consistently supported state-building in Afghanistan going back several decades, focusing on building a value-based partnership with Afghanistan, with an emphasis on human rights and democracy. This mechanism will build on these shared values and deepen the partnership between the EU and the Afghan people by creating a direct pathway to the negotiating table that ensures inclusivity and shared responsibility in the peace process and its outcome.