Washington: Elevating conflict prevention and response as a core civilian mission for the State Department, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has created a Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations (CSO).
   
"It will advance US national security by driving integrated civilian-led efforts to prevent, respond to and stabilise crises in priority states, setting conditions for long-term peace," the State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland told reporters at a news conference.
   
The bureau’s comprehensive approach would help the State Department anticipate and adapt to the security challenges of the 21st century, while supporting America’s leadership in emerging crises, an official statement said.

While the scale and types of future crises cannot be predicted, the complex nature and cascading effects of 21st century challenges require a more forward-looking State Department, it said.

CSO would support the State Department's ability to anticipate major security challenges by providing timely,
Operational solutions, it said.

CSO would build integrated approaches to conflict Prevention and stabilisation by linking analysis, planning, resources, operational solutions and active learning and training.
   
The bureau would call on its civilian responders to deploy in a timely manner to areas of instability in order to bring the right mix of expertise to each unique situation, the State Department said.

CSO would also work with a range of non-governmental and international partners to prevent conflict, address sources of violence, build on existing resiliencies and promote burden-sharing.

In particular, CSO would encourage greater involvement of local civil society -- including women, youth, and the media to prevent and respond to conflict, it said.

Later talking to reporters, a senior State Department official said that to begin with they intend to work in Several countries including in one of the Arab Spring
Countries.

"I think you could have a pretty good sense that we'll undoubtedly work in one of the Arab Spring countries, but perhaps one that's not quite as developed not as far along one that might be evolving in the coming months, probably a sub-Saharan African country where there might be a division occurring within the country," the official said speaking on the condition of anonymity.
   
"You could look at Nigeria or Kenya. They would both be Places of real significance to the US. Again, I think there's quite a lot of conversation that has to take place before we lock in there.”
   
“The same thing, I think there's probably going to be an opportunity with a very different flavor, in North-Central
America," the official said.

"You could look at the region there perhaps of Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, where there's a great deal of violence. It has real national security implications for the US. Then you could look at a country that's right sort of on the front pages right now," the official said.

“It's unclear whether they will continue to move in promising direction, but Burma would fall under that
Category," said the US official.

(Agencies)