Negotiating with Terrorists

19 Pages Posted: 22 Nov 2007

See all articles by Dean G. Pruitt

Dean G. Pruitt

State University of New York (SUNY) - Buffalo

Date Written: 2007


Negotiation with non-ideological ethno-nationalist terrorists is more common and more successful than with other kinds of terrorists. Additional strategies for dealing with terrorists include combating, isolating, and mainstreaming. There are many arguments against negotiatng with terrorists, but most of them do not apply to secret, backchannel talks, which are usually the method of choice in first approaching these groups. The success of negotiation depends on the development of flexibility by both the terrorists and the authorities. These and other points are illustrated with case materials from the Northern Ireland peace process, and the analysis is extended, on a speculative basis, to negotiation with several Islamic terrorist groups.

Suggested Citation

Pruitt, Dean G., Negotiating with Terrorists (2007). IACM 2007 Meetings Paper. Available at SSRN: or

Dean G. Pruitt (Contact Author)

State University of New York (SUNY) - Buffalo ( email )

12 Capen Hall
Buffalo, NY 14260
United States

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