Peacekeeping

Peacekeeping

Overview

Peacekeeping is an activity that aims to create the conditions for lasting peace. It is distinguished from both peacebuilding
Peacebuilding
Peacebuilding is a term used within the international development community to describe the processes and activities involved in resolving violent conflict and establishing a sustainable peace....

 and peacemaking
Peacemaking
Peacemaking is a form of conflict resolution which focuses on establishing equal power relationships that will be robust enough to forestall future conflict, and establishing some means of agreeing on ethical decisions within a community that has previously had conflict. In order to do so there...

.

Peacekeepers monitor and observe peace process
Peace process
Peace process may refer to:* in general:** Peacebuilding** Conflict resolution* specifically:** Northern Ireland peace process, efforts from c.1993 to end "the Troubles"...

es in post-conflict areas and assist ex-combatants in implementing the peace agreements they may have signed. Such assistance comes in many forms, including confidence-building measures, power-sharing arrangements, electoral support, strengthening the rule of law, and economic and social development.
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Encyclopedia

Peacekeeping is an activity that aims to create the conditions for lasting peace. It is distinguished from both peacebuilding
Peacebuilding
Peacebuilding is a term used within the international development community to describe the processes and activities involved in resolving violent conflict and establishing a sustainable peace....

 and peacemaking
Peacemaking
Peacemaking is a form of conflict resolution which focuses on establishing equal power relationships that will be robust enough to forestall future conflict, and establishing some means of agreeing on ethical decisions within a community that has previously had conflict. In order to do so there...

.

Peacekeepers monitor and observe peace process
Peace process
Peace process may refer to:* in general:** Peacebuilding** Conflict resolution* specifically:** Northern Ireland peace process, efforts from c.1993 to end "the Troubles"...

es in post-conflict areas and assist ex-combatants in implementing the peace agreements they may have signed. Such assistance comes in many forms, including confidence-building measures, power-sharing arrangements, electoral support, strengthening the rule of law, and economic and social development. Accordingly UN peacekeepers (often referred to as Blue Beret because of their light blue beret
Beret
A beret is a soft, round, flat-crowned hat, designated a "cap", usually of woven, hand-knitted wool, crocheted cotton, or wool felt, or acrylic fiber....

s or helmets) can include soldiers, police officers, and civilian personnel.

The United Nations Charter
United Nations Charter
The Charter of the United Nations is the foundational treaty of the international organization called the United Nations. It was signed at the San Francisco War Memorial and Performing Arts Center in San Francisco, United States, on 26 June 1945, by 50 of the 51 original member countries...

 gives the United Nations Security Council
United Nations Security Council
The United Nations Security Council is one of the principal organs of the United Nations and is charged with the maintenance of international peace and security. Its powers, outlined in the United Nations Charter, include the establishment of peacekeeping operations, the establishment of...

 the power and responsibility to take collective action to maintain international peace
Peace
Peace is a state of harmony characterized by the lack of violent conflict. Commonly understood as the absence of hostility, peace also suggests the existence of healthy or newly healed interpersonal or international relationships, prosperity in matters of social or economic welfare, the...

 and security. For this reason, the international community usually looks to the Security Council to authorize peacekeeping operations.

Most of these operations are established and implemented by the United Nations itself, with troops serving under UN operational control. In these cases, peacekeepers remain members of their respective armed forces, and do not constitute an independent "UN army", as the UN does not have such a force. In cases where direct UN involvement is not considered appropriate or feasible, the Council authorizes regional organizations such as the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the Economic Community of West African States
Economic Community of West African States
The Economic Community of West African States is a regional group of fifteen West African countries. Founded on 28 May 1975, with the signing of the Treaty of Lagos, its mission is to promote economic integration across the region....

, or coalitions of willing countries to undertake peacekeeping or peace-enforcement tasks.

The United Nations is not the only organization to implement peacekeeping missions. Non-UN peacekeeping forces include the NATO mission in Kosovo (with United Nations authorization) and the Multinational Force and Observers
Multinational Force and Observers
The Multinational Force and Observers is an international peacekeeping force overseeing the terms of the peace treaty between Egypt and Israel.-Background:...

 on the Sinai Peninsula
Sinai Peninsula
The Sinai Peninsula or Sinai is a triangular peninsula in Egypt about in area. It is situated between the Mediterranean Sea to the north, and the Red Sea to the south, and is the only part of Egyptian territory located in Asia as opposed to Africa, effectively serving as a land bridge between two...

.

Nature of peacekeeping


Peacekeeping is anything that contributes to the furthering of a peace process, once established. This includes, but is not limited to, the monitoring of withdrawal by combatants from a former conflict area, the supervision of elections, and the provision of reconstruction aid. Peacekeepers are often soldiers, but they do not have to be. Similarly, while soldier-peacekeepers are sometimes armed, they are not obligated to engage in combat.

Peacekeepers were not at first expected to ever fight. As a general rule, they were deployed when the ceasefire was in place and the parties to the conflict had given their consent. They were deployed to observe from the ground and report impartially on adherence to the ceasefire, troop withdrawal or other elements of the peace agreement. This gave time and breathing space for diplomatic efforts to address the underlying causes of conflict.

Thus, a distinction must be drawn between peacekeeping and other operations aimed at peace. A common misconception is that activities such as NATO's intervention in the Kosovo War
Kosovo War
The term Kosovo War or Kosovo conflict was two sequential, and at times parallel, armed conflicts in Kosovo province, then part of FR Yugoslav Republic of Serbia; from early 1998 to 1999, there was an armed conflict initiated by the ethnic Albanian "Kosovo Liberation Army" , who sought independence...

 are peacekeeping operations, when they were, in reality, peace enforcement
Peace enforcement
Peace enforcement is a practice of ensuring peace in an area or region. Part of a three part scale between peacekeeping and peacemaking, it is sometimes considered to be the midpoint. Peace enforcement is different from peacemaking where options, possibly including force, are used to bring...

. That is, since NATO was seeking to impose peace, rather than maintain peace, they were not peacekeepers, rather peacemakers.

Formation


Once a peace treaty has been negotiated, the parties involved might ask the United Nations for a peacekeeping force to oversee various elements of the agreed upon plan. This is often done because a group controlled by the United Nations is less likely to follow the interests of any one party, since it itself is controlled by many groups, namely the 15-member Security Council and the intentionally-diverse United Nations Secretariat
United Nations Secretariat
The United Nations Secretariat is one of the five principal organs of the United Nations and it is headed by the United Nations Secretary-General, assisted by a staff of international civil servants worldwide. It provides studies, information, and facilities needed by United Nations bodies for...

.

If the Security Council approves the creation of a mission, then the Department of Peacekeeping Operations
Department of Peacekeeping Operations
The Department of Peacekeeping Operations is a department of the United Nations which is charged with the planning, preparation, management and direction of UN peacekeeping operations.-History of the DPKO:...

 begins planning for the necessary elements. At this point, the senior leadership team is selected (see below). The department will then seek contributions from member nations. Since the UN has no standing force or supplies, it must form ad hoc coalitions for every task undertaken. Doing so results in both the possibility of failure to form a suitable force, and a general slowdown in procurement once the operation is in the field. Romeo Dallaire
Roméo Dallaire
Lieutenant-General Roméo Antonius Dallaire, is a Canadian senator, humanitarian, author and retired general...

, force commander in Rwanda during the Rwandan Genocide
Rwandan Genocide
The Rwandan Genocide was the 1994 mass murder of an estimated 800,000 people in the small East African nation of Rwanda. Over the course of approximately 100 days through mid-July, over 500,000 people were killed, according to a Human Rights Watch estimate...

 there, described the problems this poses by comparison to more traditional military deployments:

"He told me the UN was a 'pull' system, not a 'push' system like I had been used to with NATO, because the UN had absolutely no pool of resources to draw on. You had to make a request for everything you needed, and then you had to wait while that request was analyzed...For instance, soldiers everywhere have to eat and drink. In a push system, food and water for the number of soldiers deployed is automatically supplied. In a pull system, you have to ask for those rations, and no common sense seems to ever apply." (Shake Hands With the Devil, Dallaire, pp. 99-100)


While the peacekeeping force is being assembled, a variety of diplomatic activities are being undertaken by UN staff. The exact size and strength of the force must be agreed to by the government of the nation whose territory the conflict is on. The Rules of Engagement
Rules of engagement
Rules of Engagement refers to those responses that are permitted in the employment of military personnel during operations or in the course of their duties. These rules of engagement are determined by the legal framework within which these duties are being carried out...

 must be developed and approved by both the parties involved and the Security Council. These give the specific mandate and scope of the mission (e.g. when may the peacekeepers, if armed, use force, and where may they go within the host nation). Often, it will be mandated that peacekeepers have host government minders with them whenever they leave their base. This complexity has caused problems in the field.

When all agreements are in place, the required personnel are assembled, and final approval has been given by the Security Council, the peacekeepers are deployed to the region in question.

Cost


Peacekeeping costs, especially since the end of the Cold War
Cold War
The Cold War was the continuing state from roughly 1946 to 1991 of political conflict, military tension, proxy wars, and economic competition between the Communist World—primarily the Soviet Union and its satellite states and allies—and the powers of the Western world, primarily the United States...

, have risen dramatically. In 1993, annual UN peacekeeping costs had peaked at some $3.6 billion, reflecting the expense of operations in the former Yugoslavia and Somalia. By 1998, costs had dropped to just under $1 billion. With the resurgence of larger-scale operations, costs for UN peacekeeping rose to $3 billion in 2001. In 2004, the approved budget was $2.8 billion, although the total amount was higher than that. For the fiscal year which ended on June 30, 2006, UN peacekeeping costs were about US$
United States dollar
The United States dollar , also referred to as the American dollar, is the official currency of the United States of America. It is divided into 100 smaller units called cents or pennies....

5.03 billion.

All member states are legally obliged to pay their share of peacekeeping costs under a complex formula that they themselves have established. Despite this legal obligation, member states owed approximately $1.20 billion in current and back peacekeeping dues as of June 2004.

Structure


A United Nations peacekeeping mission has three power centers. The first is the Special Representative of the Secretary-General, the official leader of the mission. This person is responsible for all political and diplomatic activity, overseeing relations with both the parties to the peace treaty and the UN member-states in general. They are often a senior member of the Secretariat. The second is the Force Commander, who is responsible for the military forces deployed. They are a senior officer of their nation's armed services, and are often from the nation committing the highest number of troops to the project. Finally, the Chief Administrative Officer oversees supplies and logistics, and coordinates the procurement of any supplies needed.

Cold War Peacekeeping


United Nations peacekeeping was initially developed during the Cold War
Cold War
The Cold War was the continuing state from roughly 1946 to 1991 of political conflict, military tension, proxy wars, and economic competition between the Communist World—primarily the Soviet Union and its satellite states and allies—and the powers of the Western world, primarily the United States...

 as a means of resolving conflicts between states by deploying unarmed or lightly armed military personnel from a number of countries, under UN command, to areas where warring parties were in need of a neutral party to observe the peace process. Peacekeepers could be called in when the major international powers (the five permanent members of the Security Council) tasked the UN with bringing closure to conflicts threatening regional stability and international peace and security. These included a number of so-called "proxy wars" waged by client states of the superpower
Superpower
A superpower is a state with a dominant position in the international system which has the ability to influence events and its own interests and project power on a worldwide scale to protect those interests...

s. As of October 2011, there have been 66 UN peacekeeping operations
Timeline of UN peacekeeping missions
The United Nations has authorized 63 peacekeeping missions as of February 2009. These do not include interventions authorized by the UN like the Korean War and the Gulf War...

 since 1948, with sixteen operations ongoing. Suggestions for new missions arise every year.

The first peacekeeping mission was launched in 1948. This mission, the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization
United Nations Truce Supervision Organization
The United Nations Truce Supervision Organization is an organization founded on 29 May 1948 for peacekeeping in the Middle East. Its primary task was providing the military command structure to the peace keeping forces in the Middle East to enable the peace keepers to observe and maintain the...

 (UNTSO), was sent to the newly created State of Israel, where a conflict between the Israelis and the Arab states over the creation of Israel
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

 had just reached a ceasefire
Ceasefire
A ceasefire is a temporary stoppage of a war in which each side agrees with the other to suspend aggressive actions. Ceasefires may be declared as part of a formal treaty, but they have also been called as part of an informal understanding between opposing forces...

. The UNTSO remains in operation to this day, although the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
Israeli-Palestinian conflict
The Israeli–Palestinian conflict is the ongoing conflict between Israelis and Palestinians. The conflict is wide-ranging, and the term is also used in reference to the earlier phases of the same conflict, between Jewish and Zionist yishuv and the Arab population living in Palestine under Ottoman or...

 has certainly not abated. Almost a year later, the United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) was authorized to monitor relations between the two nations, which were split off from each other following the United Kingdom's
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 decolonization
Decolonization
Decolonization refers to the undoing of colonialism, the unequal relation of polities whereby one people or nation establishes and maintains dependent Territory over another...

 of the Indian subcontinent
Indian subcontinent
The Indian subcontinent, also Indian Subcontinent, Indo-Pak Subcontinent or South Asian Subcontinent is a region of the Asian continent on the Indian tectonic plate from the Hindu Kush or Hindu Koh, Himalayas and including the Kuen Lun and Karakoram ranges, forming a land mass which extends...

.

As the Korean War
Korean War
The Korean War was a conventional war between South Korea, supported by the United Nations, and North Korea, supported by the People's Republic of China , with military material aid from the Soviet Union...

 ends with the Korean Armistice Agreement in 1953, UN forces remained along the south side of demilitarized zone
Korean Demilitarized Zone
The Korean Demilitarized Zone is a strip of land running across the Korean Peninsula that serves as a buffer zone between North and South Korea. The DMZ cuts the Korean Peninsula roughly in half, crossing the 38th parallel on an angle, with the west end of the DMZ lying south of the parallel and...

 until 1967, when American and South Korean forces took over.

Returning its attention to the conflict between Israel and its Arab neighbors, the United Nations responded to Suez Crisis
Suez Crisis
The Suez Crisis, also referred to as the Tripartite Aggression, Suez War was an offensive war fought by France, the United Kingdom, and Israel against Egypt beginning on 29 October 1956. Less than a day after Israel invaded Egypt, Britain and France issued a joint ultimatum to Egypt and Israel,...

 of 1956, a war between the alliance of the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

, France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

, and Israel
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

, and Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

, which was supported by other Arab nations. When a ceasefire was declared in 1957, Canadian
Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

 diplomat (and future Prime Minister) Lester Bowles Pearson suggested that the United Nations station a peacekeeping force in the Suez
Suez
Suez is a seaport city in north-eastern Egypt, located on the north coast of the Gulf of Suez , near the southern terminus of the Suez Canal, having the same boundaries as Suez governorate. It has three harbors, Adabya, Ain Sokhna and Port Tawfiq, and extensive port facilities...

 in order to ensure that the ceasefire was honored by both sides. Pearson had initially suggested that the force consist of mainly Canadian soldiers, but the Egyptians were suspicious of having a Commonwealth
Commonwealth of Nations
The Commonwealth of Nations, normally referred to as the Commonwealth and formerly known as the British Commonwealth, is an intergovernmental organisation of fifty-four independent member states...

 nation defend them against the United Kingdom and her allies. In the end, a wide variety of national forces were drawn upon to ensure national diversity. Pearson would win the Nobel Peace Prize
Nobel Peace Prize
The Nobel Peace Prize is one of the five Nobel Prizes bequeathed by the Swedish industrialist and inventor Alfred Nobel.-Background:According to Nobel's will, the Peace Prize shall be awarded to the person who...

 for this work, and he is today considered a father of modern peacekeeping.

In 1988 the Nobel Peace Prize
Nobel Peace Prize
The Nobel Peace Prize is one of the five Nobel Prizes bequeathed by the Swedish industrialist and inventor Alfred Nobel.-Background:According to Nobel's will, the Peace Prize shall be awarded to the person who...

 was awarded to the United Nations
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

 peacekeeping forces. The press release stated that the forces "represent the manifest will of the community of nations" and have "made a decisive contribution" to the resolution of conflict around the world.

Since 1991


The end of the Cold War precipitated a dramatic shift in UN and multilateral peacekeeping. In a new spirit of cooperation, the Security Council established larger and more complex UN peacekeeping missions, often to help implement comprehensive peace agreements between protagonists in intra-State conflicts and civil wars. Furthermore, peacekeeping came to involve more and more non-military elements that ensured the proper functioning of civic functions, such as elections. The UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations was created in 1992 to support this increased demand for such missions.

By and large, the new operations were successful. In El Salvador
El Salvador
El Salvador or simply Salvador is the smallest and the most densely populated country in Central America. The country's capital city and largest city is San Salvador; Santa Ana and San Miguel are also important cultural and commercial centers in the country and in all of Central America...

 and Mozambique
Mozambique
Mozambique, officially the Republic of Mozambique , is a country in southeastern Africa bordered by the Indian Ocean to the east, Tanzania to the north, Malawi and Zambia to the northwest, Zimbabwe to the west and Swaziland and South Africa to the southwest...

, for example, peacekeeping provided ways to achieve self-sustaining peace. Some efforts failed, perhaps as the result of an overly optimistic assessment of what UN peacekeeping could accomplish. While complex missions in Cambodia
Cambodia
Cambodia , officially known as the Kingdom of Cambodia, is a country located in the southern portion of the Indochina Peninsula in Southeast Asia...

 and Mozambique were ongoing, the Security Council dispatched peacekeepers to conflict zones like Somalia
Somalia
Somalia , officially the Somali Republic and formerly known as the Somali Democratic Republic under Socialist rule, is a country located in the Horn of Africa. Since the outbreak of the Somali Civil War in 1991 there has been no central government control over most of the country's territory...

, where neither ceasefires nor the consent of all the parties in conflict had been secured. These operations did not have the manpower, nor were they supported by the required political will, to implement their mandates. The failures — most notably the 1994 Rwandan genocide
Rwandan Genocide
The Rwandan Genocide was the 1994 mass murder of an estimated 800,000 people in the small East African nation of Rwanda. Over the course of approximately 100 days through mid-July, over 500,000 people were killed, according to a Human Rights Watch estimate...

 and the 1995 massacre
Srebrenica massacre
The Srebrenica massacre, also known as the Srebrenica genocide, refers to the July 1995 killing, during the Bosnian War, of more than 8,000 Bosniaks , mainly men and boys, in and around the town of Srebrenica in Bosnia and Herzegovina, by units of the Army of Republika Srpska under the command of...

 in Srebrenica
Srebrenica
Srebrenica is a town and municipality in the east of Bosnia and Herzegovina, in the Bosnian Serb entity of Republika Srpska. Srebrenica is a small mountain town, its main industry being salt mining and a nearby spa. During the Bosnian War, the town was the site of the July 1995 massacre,...

 and Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

 — led to a period of retrenchment and self-examination in UN peacekeeping.

That period led, in part, to the United Nations Peacebuilding Commission, which works to implement stable peace through some of the same civic functions that peacekeepers also work on, such as elections. The Commission currently works with six countries, all in Africa.

Gallantry Awards


Captain Salaria - Congo
In November 1961 the UN Security Council moved to prevent hostilities by Katangese troops in Congo. This caused Moise Tshombe
Moise Tshombe
Moïse Kapenda Tshombe was a Congolese politician.- Biography :He was the son of a successful Congolese businessman and was born in Musumba, Congo. He received his education from an American missionary school and later trained as an accountant...

, the Katanga
State of Katanga
Katanga was a breakaway state proclaimed on 11 July 1960 separating itself from the newly independent Democratic Republic of the Congo. In revolt against the new government of Patrice Lumumba in July, Katanga declared independence under Moise Tshombe, leader of the local CONAKAT party...

 secessionist leader to step up attacks on UN troops. On 5 December 1961, an Indian UN company supported by 3 inches (76.2 mm) mortar attacked a Katangese road-block between the Katangese HQ and the Elisabethville airfield. A Gurkha
Gurkha
Gurkha are people from Nepal who take their name from the Gorkha District. Gurkhas are best known for their history in the Indian Army's Gorkha regiments, the British Army's Brigade of Gurkhas and the Nepalese Army. Gurkha units are closely associated with the kukri, a forward-curving Nepalese knife...

 platoon attempted to link up with the company and reinforce the road-block, but ran into opposition near the old airfield. The platoon attack on the rebel position, manned by about 90 Katangese troops, was led by Indian Captain Gurbachan Singh Salaria
Gurbachan Singh Salaria
Captain Gurbachan Singh Salaria is a military war hero, who was awarded the Param Vir Chakra, India's highest wartime military award. In the 1988 Television serial Param Vir Chakra by Chetan Anand, Captain G.S...

. Despite having only 16 soldiers and being outgunned, Captain Salaria and his Gurkha soldiers' ferocity overwhelmed the enemy, who fled. In this engagement, Captain Salaria was shot in his neck, but continued to fight till he succumbed to his injuries. Due to his selfless act of courage, the UN Headquarters in Elisabethville was saved from encirclement and Captain Salaria was awarded India's highest military award, the Param Vir Chakra
Param Vir Chakra
The Param Vir Chakra is India's highest military decoration awarded for the highest degree of valour or self-sacrifice in the presence of the enemy. It can be, and often has been, awarded posthumously....

.

Non-United Nations Peacekeeping



Not all peacekeeping forces have been directly controlled by the United Nations. In 1981, an agreement between Israel and Egypt formed the Multinational Force and Observers
Multinational Force and Observers
The Multinational Force and Observers is an international peacekeeping force overseeing the terms of the peace treaty between Egypt and Israel.-Background:...

 which continues to monitor the Sinai Peninsula
Sinai Peninsula
The Sinai Peninsula or Sinai is a triangular peninsula in Egypt about in area. It is situated between the Mediterranean Sea to the north, and the Red Sea to the south, and is the only part of Egyptian territory located in Asia as opposed to Africa, effectively serving as a land bridge between two...

.

Six years later, the Indian Peace Keeping Force
Indian Peace Keeping Force
Indian Peace Keeping Force was the Indian military contingent performing a peacekeeping operation in Sri Lanka between 1987 and 1990...

 entered Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka, officially the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka is a country off the southern coast of the Indian subcontinent. Known until 1972 as Ceylon , Sri Lanka is an island surrounded by the Indian Ocean, the Gulf of Mannar and the Palk Strait, and lies in the vicinity of India and the...

 to help maintain peace. The situation became a quagmire, and India was asked to withdraw in 1990 by the Sri Lankan Prime Minister having formed a pact with the Tamil Tiger rebels.

In November 1988, India also helped restore government of Maumoon Abdul Gayoom
Maumoon Abdul Gayoom
Maumoon Abdul Gayoom was President of the Maldives from 1978 to 2008. After serving as Minister of Transport, he was nominated as President by the Majlis of the Maldives and succeeded Ibrahim Nasir on November 11, 1978. He eventually became the longest-ruling head of government in Asia...

 in Maldives
Maldives
The Maldives , , officially Republic of Maldives , also referred to as the Maldive Islands, is an island nation in the Indian Ocean formed by a double chain of twenty-six atolls oriented north-south off India's Lakshadweep islands, between Minicoy Island and...

 under Operation Cactus
Operation Cactus
The 1988 Maldives coup d'état, whose rescue efforts were code-named Operation Sandhya by the Indian armed forces, was the attempt by a group of Maldivians led by Abdullah Luthufi and assisted by about 80 armed mercenaries of a Tamil secessionist organisation from Sri Lanka, the People's Liberation...

.

On 20 December 1995, under a UN mandate, a NATO-led force (IFOR
IFOR
The Implementation Force was a NATO-led multinational peacekeeping force in Bosnia and Herzegovina under a one-year mandate from 20 December 1995 to 20 December 1996 under the codename Operation Joint Endeavour. Its task was to implement the military Annexes of The General Framework Agreement for...

) entered Bosnia
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

 in order to implement The General Framework Agreement for Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina. In a similar manner, a NATO operation (KFOR) continues in the former Serbian province of Kosovo
Kosovo
Kosovo is a region in southeastern Europe. Part of the Ottoman Empire for more than five centuries, later the Autonomous Province of Kosovo and Metohija within Serbia...

.

The NATO-led mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina has since been replaced by a European Union
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

 peacekeeping mission, EUFOR.

The African Union
African Union
The African Union is a union consisting of 54 African states. The only all-African state not in the AU is Morocco. Established on 9 July 2002, the AU was formed as a successor to the Organisation of African Unity...

 has also had some limited involvement in peacekeeping within Africa since 2003.

In South Ossetia
South Ossetia
South Ossetia or Tskhinvali Region is a disputed region and partly recognized state in the South Caucasus, located in the territory of the South Ossetian Autonomous Oblast within the former Georgian Soviet Socialist Republic....

, Russia
Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

 and Georgia
Georgia (country)
Georgia is a sovereign state in the Caucasus region of Eurasia. Located at the crossroads of Western Asia and Eastern Europe, it is bounded to the west by the Black Sea, to the north by Russia, to the southwest by Turkey, to the south by Armenia, and to the southeast by Azerbaijan. The capital of...

 each deployed their own sets of peacekeepers to the region under the Sochi agreement
Sochi agreement
The Sochi agreement was a ceasefire agreement ostensibly marking the end of the both the Georgian–Ossetian and Georgian–Abkhazian conflicts, signed in Sochi on June 24, 1992 between Georgia and South Ossetia, the ceasefire with Abkhazia on...

. The 2008 South Ossetia War
2008 South Ossetia war
The 2008 South Ossetia War or Russo-Georgian War was an armed conflict in August 2008 between Georgia on one side, and Russia and separatist governments of South Ossetia and Abkhazia on the other....

 resulted in the expulsion of all Georgian forces from the region, including peacekeepers, as well as the deaths of 18 Russian peacekeepers.

Participation





The UN Charter stipulates that to assist in maintaining peace and security around the world, all member states of the UN should make available to the Security Council necessary armed forces and facilities. Since 1948, close to 130 nations have contributed military and civilian police personnel to peace operations. While detailed records of all personnel who have served in peacekeeping missions since 1948 are not available, it is estimated that up to one million soldiers, police officers and civilians have served under the UN flag in the last 56 years. As of March 2008, 113 countries were contributing a total 88,862 military observers, police, and troops.

Despite the large number of contributors, the greatest burden continues to be borne by a core group of developing countries, who often profit financially from their participation in such missions. The 10 main troop-contributing countries to UN peacekeeping operations as of September 2010 were Bangladesh
Bangladesh
Bangladesh , officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh is a sovereign state located in South Asia. It is bordered by India on all sides except for a small border with Burma to the far southeast and by the Bay of Bengal to the south...

 (10,736), Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 (10,691), India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 (8,935), Nigeria
Nigeria
Nigeria , officially the Federal Republic of Nigeria, is a federal constitutional republic comprising 36 states and its Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. The country is located in West Africa and shares land borders with the Republic of Benin in the west, Chad and Cameroon in the east, and Niger in...

 (5,709), Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

 (5,458), Nepal
Nepal
Nepal , officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a landlocked sovereign state located in South Asia. It is located in the Himalayas and bordered to the north by the People's Republic of China, and to the south, east, and west by the Republic of India...

 (5,044), Jordan
Jordan
Jordan , officially the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan , Al-Mamlaka al-Urduniyya al-Hashemiyya) is a kingdom on the East Bank of the River Jordan. The country borders Saudi Arabia to the east and south-east, Iraq to the north-east, Syria to the north and the West Bank and Israel to the west, sharing...

 (3,826), Ghana
Ghana
Ghana , officially the Republic of Ghana, is a country located in West Africa. It is bordered by Côte d'Ivoire to the west, Burkina Faso to the north, Togo to the east, and the Gulf of Guinea to the south...

 (3,647), Rwanda
Rwanda
Rwanda or , officially the Republic of Rwanda , is a country in central and eastern Africa with a population of approximately 11.4 million . Rwanda is located a few degrees south of the Equator, and is bordered by Uganda, Tanzania, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of the Congo...

 (3,635), Uruguay
Uruguay
Uruguay ,officially the Oriental Republic of Uruguay,sometimes the Eastern Republic of Uruguay; ) is a country in the southeastern part of South America. It is home to some 3.5 million people, of whom 1.8 million live in the capital Montevideo and its metropolitan area...

 (2,489).

The head of the Department of Peacekeeping Operations, Under-Secretary-General Jean-Marie Guéhenno
Jean-Marie Guéhenno
Jean-Marie Guéhenno is a former French diplomat. He served as the United Nations' Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations. Guéhenno was appointed to the position in 2000 and retired in August 2008. He is a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution and the NYU Center on International...

, has reminded Member States that “the provision of well-equipped, well-trained and disciplined military and police personnel to UN peacekeeping operations is a collective responsibility of Member States. Countries from the South should not and must not be expected to shoulder this burden alone”.

As of March 2008, in addition to military and police personnel, 5,187 international civilian personnel, 2,031 UN Volunteers and 12,036 local civilian personnel worked in UN peacekeeping missions.

Through April 2008, 2,468 people from over 100 countries have been killed while serving on peacekeeping missions. Many of those came from India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 (127), Canada
Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

 (114) and Ghana
Ghana
Ghana , officially the Republic of Ghana, is a country located in West Africa. It is bordered by Côte d'Ivoire to the west, Burkina Faso to the north, Togo to the east, and the Gulf of Guinea to the south...

 (113). Thirty percent of the fatalities in the first 55 years of UN peacekeeping occurred in the years 1993-1995.

Developing nations tend to participate in peacekeeping more than developed countries. This may be due in part because forces from smaller countries avoid evoking thoughts of imperialism. For example, in December 2005, Eritrea
Eritrea
Eritrea , officially the State of Eritrea, is a country in the Horn of Africa. Eritrea derives it's name from the Greek word Erethria, meaning 'red land'. The capital is Asmara. It is bordered by Sudan in the west, Ethiopia in the south, and Djibouti in the southeast...

 expelled all American, Russian, European, and Canadian personnel from the peacekeeping mission on their border with Ethiopia
Ethiopia
Ethiopia , officially known as the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is a country located in the Horn of Africa. It is the second-most populous nation in Africa, with over 82 million inhabitants, and the tenth-largest by area, occupying 1,100,000 km2...

. Additionally, an economic motive appeals to the developing countries. The rate of reimbursement by the UN for troop contributing countries per peacekeeper per month include: $1,028 for pay and allowances; $303 supplementary pay for specialists; $68 for personal clothing, gear and equipment; and $5 for personal weaponry. This can be a significant source of revenue for a developing country. By providing important training and equipment for the soldiers as well as salaries, UN peacekeeping missions allow them to maintain larger armies than they otherwise could. About 4.5% of the troops and civilian police deployed in UN peacekeeping missions come from the European Union
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

 and less than one percent from the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 (USA).

Both personnel and financial contributions to peacekeeping opeations are included in the Commitment to Development Index
Commitment to Development Index
The Commitment to Development Index , published annually by the Center for Global Development, ranks the world’s richest countries on their dedication to policies that benefit the five billion people living in poorer nations. Rich and poor countries are linked in many ways; thus the Index looks...

, which ranks donor governments on their policies to the developing world.

Potential for harm to troops


There is some concern about the harm caused to troops, as peacekeeping can be very stressful. The peacekeepers are exposed to danger caused by the warring parties and often in an unfamiliar climate. This gives rise to different mental health
Mental health
Mental health describes either a level of cognitive or emotional well-being or an absence of a mental disorder. From perspectives of the discipline of positive psychology or holism mental health may include an individual's ability to enjoy life and procure a balance between life activities and...

 problems, suicide
Suicide
Suicide is the act of intentionally causing one's own death. Suicide is often committed out of despair or attributed to some underlying mental disorder, such as depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, alcoholism, or drug abuse...

, and substance abuse
Substance abuse
A substance-related disorder is an umbrella term used to describe several different conditions associated with several different substances .A substance related disorder is a condition in which an individual uses or abuses a...

 as shown by the percentage of former peacekeepers with those problems. Having a parent in a mission abroad for an extended period is also stressful to the peacekeepers' family. In addition, peacekeepers, even when acting on UN mandate, may become a target for attacks by some of the parties in a conflict.

Another viewpoint raises the problem that the peacekeeping may soften the troops and erode their combat ability, as the mission profile of a peacekeeping contingent is totally different from the profile of a unit fighting an all-out war.

Peacekeeping, human trafficking, and forced prostitution



Reporters witnessed a rapid increase in prostitution in Cambodia
Cambodia
Cambodia , officially known as the Kingdom of Cambodia, is a country located in the southern portion of the Indochina Peninsula in Southeast Asia...

, Mozambique
Mozambique
Mozambique, officially the Republic of Mozambique , is a country in southeastern Africa bordered by the Indian Ocean to the east, Tanzania to the north, Malawi and Zambia to the northwest, Zimbabwe to the west and Swaziland and South Africa to the southwest...

, Bosnia
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

, and Kosovo
Kosovo
Kosovo is a region in southeastern Europe. Part of the Ottoman Empire for more than five centuries, later the Autonomous Province of Kosovo and Metohija within Serbia...

 after UN and, in the case of the latter two, NATO peacekeeping forces moved in. In the 1996 U.N. study The Impact of Armed Conflict on Children, former first lady of Mozambique Graça Machel documented: "In 6 out of 12 country studies on sexual exploitation of children in situations of armed conflict prepared for the present report, the arrival of peacekeeping troops has been associated with a rapid rise in child prostitution."

Gita Sahgal spoke out in 2004 with regard to the fact that prostitution and sex abuse crops up wherever humanitarian intervention
Humanitarian intervention
Humanitarian intervention "refers to a state using military force against another state when the chief publicly declared aim of that military action is ending human-rights violations being perpetrated by the state against which it is directed."...

 efforts are set up. She observed: "The issue with the UN is that peacekeeping operations unfortunately seem to be doing the same thing that other militaries do. Even the guardians have to be guarded."

Uruguayan President Jose Mujica
José Mujica
José Alberto "Pepe" Mujica Cordano is a Uruguayan politician and former guerrilla fighter, a member of the Broad Front and current President of Uruguay....

 apologized to Haitian President Michel Martelly over the alleged rape of an 18-year-old Haitian man by Uruguayan U.N. peacekeeping troops. Martelly said "a collective rape carried out against a young Haitian" would not go unpunished. Four soldiers suspected of being involved in the rape have been detained.

Brahimi analysis


In response to criticism, particularly of the cases of sexual abuse by peacekeepers, the UN has taken steps toward reforming its operations. The Brahimi Report
Report of the Panel on United Nations Peacekeeping
The Report of the Panel on United Nations Peace Operations is commonly called the Brahimi Report, named for the chairman of the commission that produced it, Lakhdar Brahimi...

 was the first of many steps to recap former peacekeeping missions, isolate flaws, and take steps to patch these mistakes to ensure the efficiency of future peacekeeping missions. The UN has vowed to continue to put these practices into effect when performing peacekeeping operations in the future. The technocratic aspects of the reform process have been continued and revitalised by the DPKO in its 'Peace Operations 2010' reform agenda. This included an increase in personnel, the harmonization of the conditions of service of field and headquarters staff, the development of guidelines and standard operating procedures, and improving the partnership arrangement between the Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), African Union and European Union. 2008 capstone doctrine entitled "United Nations Peacekeeping Operations: Principles and Guidelines" incorporates and builds on the Brahimi analysis.

Rapid reaction force


One suggestion to account for delays such as the one in Rwanda, is a rapid reaction force: a standing group, administered by the UN and deployed by the Security Council, that receives its troops and support from current Security Council members and is ready for quick deployment in the event of future genocides.

Restructuring of the UN secretariat


The UN peacekeeping capacity was enhanced in 2007 by augmenting the DPKO with the new Department of Field Support (DFS). Whereas the new entity serves as a key enabler by co-ordinating the administration and logistics in UN peacekeeping operations, DPKO concentrates on policy planning and providing strategic directions.

See also



  • UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations
    Department of Peacekeeping Operations
    The Department of Peacekeeping Operations is a department of the United Nations which is charged with the planning, preparation, management and direction of UN peacekeeping operations.-History of the DPKO:...

  • List of all UN peacekeeping missions
  • List of countries by number of UN peacekeepers
  • List of countries where UN peacekeepers are currently deployed
  • List of non-UN peacekeeping missions
  • Multinational Force and Observers
    Multinational Force and Observers
    The Multinational Force and Observers is an international peacekeeping force overseeing the terms of the peace treaty between Egypt and Israel.-Background:...

  • Timeline of UN peacekeeping missions
    Timeline of UN peacekeeping missions
    The United Nations has authorized 63 peacekeeping missions as of February 2009. These do not include interventions authorized by the UN like the Korean War and the Gulf War...

  • Military operations other than war
    Military operations other than war
    Military Operations Other Than War focus on deterring war, resolving conflict, promoting peace, and supporting civil authorities in response to domestic crises. The phrase and acronym was coined by the United States military during the 1990s, but it has since fallen out of use. The UK military...

  • Three Block War
    Three Block War
    The Three Block War is a concept described by U.S. Marine General Charles Krulak in the late 1990s to illustrate the complex spectrum of challenges likely to be faced by soldiers on the modern battlefield. In Krulak's example, soldiers may be required to conduct full scale military action,...

  • White Helmets
    White Helmets
    The White Helmets Commission is a humanitarian aid and peacekeeping agency based on an initiative launched by Argentina in 1993.-History:...

  • PKSOI

Further reading


  • Blocq, Daniel. 2009. “Western Soldiers and the Protection of Local Civilians in UN Peacekeeping Operations: Is a Nationalist Orientation in the Armed Forces Hindering Our Preparedness to Fight?” Armed Forces & Society
    Armed Forces & Society
    Armed Forces & Society is a quarterly peer-reviewed academic journal that publishes scholarly articles and book reviews on civil–military relations, military sociology, military institutions, conflict management, arms control, peacekeeping, conflict resolution, military contracting, terrorism, and...

    , abstract

  • Bridges, Donna and Debbie Horsfall. 2009. “Increasing Operational Effectiveness in UN Peacekeeping: Toward a Gender-Balanced Force.” Armed Forces & Society
    Armed Forces & Society
    Armed Forces & Society is a quarterly peer-reviewed academic journal that publishes scholarly articles and book reviews on civil–military relations, military sociology, military institutions, conflict management, arms control, peacekeeping, conflict resolution, military contracting, terrorism, and...

    , May 2009. abstract

  • Howard, Lise Morjé. 2008. UN Peacekeeping in Civil Wars. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. abstract

  • Blocq, Daniel. 2010. "Western Soldiers and the Protection of Local Civilians in UN Peacekeeping Operations: Is a Nationalist Orientation in the Armed Forces Hindering Our Preparedness to Fight?" Armed Forces & Society
    Armed Forces & Society
    Armed Forces & Society is a quarterly peer-reviewed academic journal that publishes scholarly articles and book reviews on civil–military relations, military sociology, military institutions, conflict management, arms control, peacekeeping, conflict resolution, military contracting, terrorism, and...

    Vol. 36 (2): 290-309, doi:10.1177/0095327X08330816 Abstract