If you get a chance to see it I recommend you watch Pray the Devil Back to Hell. It’s a documentary that tells the story of a group of Christian and Muslim women who came together in their opposition to civil war in Liberia.

As Amnesty International reports some women did fight in the wars that tore the country apart between 1989 and 1997 and 1999 and 2003 but the Liberian women’s peace movement came together to call a halt to the rape and the use of young children in the conflict.

You can read about the role of women in the peace process here and here.

What was great about the film was hearing from the women who took part in what began as a small movement and ended with women meeting Charles Taylor to demand peace and staging a sit-in at deadlocked peace talks forcing delegates from Taylor’s government and Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy (LURD) agreed a deal.

It’s a remarkable story of what people can achieved when they are mobilised and it got remarkably little coverage. Until I saw the film I wasn’t aware of the role of Women of Liberia Mass Action for Peace in securing the election of Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf as Africa’s first elected female head of state.

Photo Credit: World Economic Forum through a Creative Commons Licence

Advertisements