Source: (-0001) The Journal of the Institute of Justice and International Studies ( Vol 8)

Drawing upon a careful assessment of community efforts to reduce paramilitary punishment violence in Loyalist and Republican working class areas of Northern Ireland, this paper explores the impact of former combatants as agents of the peace process. Conventional terrorist, peacekeeping (DDR), and transitional justice discourses largely discount even the possibility of a competing model of justice ‘from below,’ an orientation that seeks to leverage ‘local’ stakes in reconciliation, regeneration, development and sustainable peace. Findings of a multiyear evaluation of community-based restorative justice innovation are reviewed, involving the active participation and leadership of ex-combatants and the cooperation of paramilitary formations.