GEMUN 2014 SECURITY COUNCIL. Topic 1: Question of effectiveness of peacekeeping operations. Study Guide Joselyn Salazar

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1 GEMUN 2014 SECURITY COUNCIL Topic 1: Question of effectiveness of peacekeeping operations Study Guide Joselyn Salazar

2 Definitions of Key Terms 1. Peacekeeping: an effective means to help countries torn by conflict restore and sustain peace. 2. UN Peacekeepers: workers deployed by the UN to monitor and observe peace processes in post-conflict areas who may assist ex-combatants in implementing peace agreement commitments that they have undertaken. 3. Peacekeepers Day: 29 May International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers; dedicated to honor and pay tribute to the men and women who have lost their lives in peacekeeping operations. Introduction Since the creation of the United Nations in 1948, the world has faced many crises, ranging from political to humanitarian. One of the most pressing issues it has had to deal with is the stabilization of countries that have either just ended a war or signed a ceasefire. Given these circumstances, the Security Council has been given the primary responsibility of using UN peacekeepers as tool of international crisis response, determining where and when these missions should be deployed. The Security Council monitors the progress of the various global operations by continuously releasing reports and by holding specific committee sessions dedicated to discussing a certain mission. Seeing as all member states ratified to Article 25 of the UN Charter, any and all resolutions passed by the Council must be implemented. Background information Peacekeeping operations are based upon three fundamental values: consent of parties, impartiality, and non-use of force except in self-defense and defense of the mandate. Currently, peacekeeping operations are in place not only as a method of keeping the peace, but also as a way to assist in the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of former combatants, support the organization of democratic elections, and promote human rights. By taking a multi-faceted approach to solving these issues, this UN program ensures that they are solving the issue from all sides, truly understanding the roots so that stability can be attained and sustained in a nation.

3 However, it is important to note that despite many altruistic efforts; oftentimes UN peacekeeping operations are not 100% successful. This is due to the fact that these operations take place in some of the most dangerous and difficult countries in the world. The majority of these countries do not have a stable governmental authority; they face high levels of violence and of corruption. Thus, it becomes incredibly difficult for peacekeepers to avoid the use of force, which leads to increased controversy from nations who do not support the UN s missions. They argue that using force to ensure peace is hypocritical and counters the essence of this program. Many have gone as far as calling the UN efforts futile because the peace-keeping operations contribute to the suffering of the very people they were mandated to assist. In an attempt to better the UN Peacekeeping Program, various reforms have been set in place since 2000, thanks to the Brahimi Report. This document aimed to identify and assess the shortcomings of the program over the past couple of decades so that solutions could be found to make it more efficient. Due to this report, more funds were allocated to the program so that the UN operations could be properly resourced and equipped. In addition, more peacekeeping policies where drafted and published so that peacekeepers would have a clearer understanding of their principles and guidelines in the field. This may have been one of the most important reforms, seeing as the program was often criticized for ambiguity and unclear mandates. Lastly, the Secretary General imposed a zerotolerance policy regarding sexual exploitation and abuse by UN peacekeepers in the host countries. Furthermore, it is important to recognize that none of these missions would have been possible without the help and support of other organizations. The UN Peacekeeping operation is a global partnership that works hand in hand with several institutions, including the African Union, the European Union, the World Bank and the UNDP (United Nations Development Program). Thanks to their collaboration, the UN Peacekeeping Program is able to maintain and fund 16 active missions with a relatively small budget of $7.23 billion; less than 0.5% of world military expenditure.

4 Major countries involved Over the course of 60 years, many nations have been involved with some sort of peace-keeping operations, either directly as the site of a conflict or indirectly through the deployment of their troops to the area. One of the most talked about peacekeeping operation was UNAMIR (United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda) which ran from October 1993 March Rwanda This conflict arose between two tribes in Rwanda, the Hutu s (who controlled the government) and the Tutsi s (who were seen as a rebel group). After a civil war in the country, UNAMIR was established to go into the country and aid the implementation of the Arusha Accords, signed August 4, 1993, which were meant to end the Rwandan Civil War. However, on April 6, 1994, there was a genocide that lasted around 100 days, where approximately 1 million people (both Tutsi and Hutu) were killed. What is more, 10 Belgian UNAMIR soldiers were targeted by Rwandan government troops and killed. It is said that their death was a direct result of an unclear mandate regarding the use of force for selfdefense, because the UNAMIR soldiers apparently made no effort to fight back. At this point, chaos had broken out, not only in the country with the cessation of the peace agreement, but also within the UN community as they did not know how to proceed with their mission. Nobody was sure how to act in the case of genocide, and Belgium pulled out all of its troops from the mission. With less than 300 troops, the operation was crumbling and within a few years, UNAMIR pulled out completely. Although this mission is generally categorized as a failure, there were many important lessons that the peacekeeping program learned from this experience and it is evident that they have taken measures to ensure that this does not happen again. UN involvement Since its establishment, 68 peacekeeping operations have been deployed by the United Nations. At present, there are 16 operations, taking place across 4 different continents. From data collected from , it was shown that the United States, Japan and the United Kingdom provided the greatest source of financial support for the program, while Bangladesh, Pakistan and India were the individual countries that contributed the largest portion of troops. This information is displayed in the charts below:

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