Success or Failure in the Peace Processes of Aceh and Sri Lanka: A Comparative Study

Tunçer Kılavuz İ.

TERRORISM AND POLITICAL VIOLENCE, vol.31, no.4, pp.712-732, 2019 (Peer-Reviewed Journal) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 31 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/09546553.2017.1282860
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index, Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.712-732


This study examines why some internal conflicts end in negotiated agreements, while negotiations fail in others. In order to address this question, I compare the cases of Aceh, where some 30years of armed conflict ended in a 2005 peace agreement between Gerakan Aceh Merdeka (GAM, the Free Aceh Movement) and the government of Indonesia; and Sri Lanka, where 2002-2006 negotiations between the government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam broke down. This study adopts ideas from bargaining theories of war, focusing on the adversaries' power perceptions in relation to actions that led to the civil war settlements. It identifies three variables as decisive: (1) information revealed by war, (2) control over spoilers, and (3) divisions in the ranks of the rebel organization.