The world was shocked when deadly riots broke out in Kosovo during March 2004, after nearly five years of involvement and financial support by NATO and the United Nations. But, despite the widespread nature of the rioting, violence did not spread into communities of return that had benefited substantially from direct international financial aid and interventions in the same way that riots infected the wider province. This was the experience of communities assisted by at least two international NGOs, both of which used the ‘Do No Harm’ methodology of enhancing ‘connectors’ while minimizing ‘dividers’ between ethnic groups. American Refugee Committee's programme is described and displacement data are presented. In those communities assisted by American Refugee Committee, 85 per cent of the returnees did not flee during the riots. It is concluded that communities of return succeeded in thwarting violence because they had a stake in peace.

You do not currently have access to this article.