By Laurence BROERS
Conciliation Resources,Caucasus Programme Projects Manager
‘Missed opportunities’, and their opposite, ‘windows of opportunity’ are a mediator’s mantra. In different contexts, especially when peace talks have failed or violence has resumed, one hears about ‘missed opportunities’. The South Caucasus has seen many missed opportunities, whether these date from the ‘last chance opportunities’ in the early 1990s to prevent the South Caucasus wars, to ‘near miss opportunities’ when agreement was allegedly close, to a more general sense that opportunities to engage in cross-conflict initiatives were never seriously taken up. At the same time we are often told that because of electoral cycles or some big player’s input, we have a ‘window of opportunity’.