I just mediated my first Sudanese conflict over water rights.
The first party owned the rights to a water source, but the second party needed water. Instead of asking for access to the water, the second party came in and took control of the water source by force. The first party came back and retaliated with even more force than the second party had used initially.
So, we ended up with two crying toddlers and an empty water jug.
After sitting them down and waiting for them to stop crying, I began asking questions from both sides to get the story out in the open. Then I began asking them more reflective questions like, “If you want water, would you like someone to share with you?” and “If you have water, would you like someone to take it away or ask if they can have a drink?”
Eventually, we got to a place where I think the two understood each other and were able to apologize. Sharing is important, and fighting is not good.