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  • Author: Arthur Boutellis, Michael Beary
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Since 2013, after years of near absence from the continent, a number of European countries, along with Canada, have again deployed to UN peacekeeping missions in Africa. The European presence in UN peacekeeping in Africa is now nearly at its largest since the mid-1990s. These countries provide much-needed high-end capabilities, as well as political and financial capital, to UN peacekeeping operations. Nonetheless, securing and sustaining European contributions to these types of peacekeeping operations remains an uphill battle for the UN. This paper draws lessons from this renewed engagement by European countries and Canada, both from their point of view, as well as from that of the UN Secretariat, UN field missions, and other troop contributors. It aims to explore how these bodies and other countries can best work together in a collective endeavor to improve UN peacekeeping’s efficiency and effectiveness. Toward this end, the paper recommends a number of actions to the UN Secretariat: Build peacekeeping operations around first-class medical systems; Focus on improving processes for casualty evacuation; Strengthen the UN’s capacity to foster partnerships among troop-contributing countries; Engage Europe strategically and politically; Be flexible and make European contributors (and others) feel included in planning; Continue educating European contributors about UN peacekeeping; Do not limit engagement with European contributors to high-end capabilities; Ensure European contributors adhere to UN standards; and Encourage European contributors to commit to longer deployments.
  • Topic: United Nations, Peacekeeping, Multilateralism
  • Political Geography: Africa, Europe, Canada
  • Author: Charles T. Hunt
  • Publication Date: 02-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Since first deployed in 1960, United Nations police (UNPOL) have consistently been present in UN missions and have become increasingly important to achieving mission objectives. Since 1999, these objectives have often included the protection of civilians (POC), especially in places like the Central African Republic, Darfur, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Mali, and South Sudan. But despite its rise in prominence, the protective role of UNPOL is generally undervalued and regularly overlooked, and missions have tended to overly rely on militarized approaches to POC. This report examines the roles and responsibilities of UNPOL regarding POC. It outlines UNPOL’s contributions to POC and perceived comparative advantages, using examples of their role as compeller, deterrent, partner, and enabler. It also identifies and draws lessons from challenges to police protection efforts, including ambiguous mandates, policies, and guidance; poor coordination; problematic partnerships; and deficits in capabilities, capacities, and tools. Drawing on these lessons from past and current deployments, the report proposes recommendations for how member states, the Security Council, the UN Secretariat, and field missions can improve UNPOL’s efforts to protect civilians going forward. These recommendations include: Clarifying the role of UN police in POC through mandates, policies, guidance, and training to align the expectations of UN peace operations, the Secretariat, and member states for what UNPOL are expected to do; Involving all UN police in POC and giving them a voice in decision making and planning to infuse whole-of-mission POC efforts with policing perspectives and empower UNPOL to act more readily; Enhancing partnerships between UN police, host states, and other mission components to enable more responsive, better coordinated, and more comprehensive approaches to POC; and Providing more appropriate and more flexible capabilities, capacities, and tools to address critical capabilities gaps and adapt existing resources to better meet UNPOL’s latent potential for POC.
  • Topic: Security, United Nations, Peacekeeping, Reform, Rule of Law, Civilians, Police
  • Political Geography: Africa, Darfur, Mali, South Sudan, Central African Republic, Congo
  • Author: Sarah-Myriam Martin-Brûlé
  • Publication Date: 04-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: The growing number of UN personnel deployed to missions in violent, volatile, and complex settings has pushed the UN to take all means necessary to improve the safety and security of its staff and of civilians under its protection. The UN’s Peacekeeping-Intelligence Policy, which was first developed in 2017 and later revised in 2019, has been a central part of these efforts. This paper outlines the difficulties of creating and implementing this policy. It addresses the origin and evolution of UN peacekeeping-intelligence as a concept and explains the need for this policy. It then discusses how peacekeeping-intelligence was and is being developed, including the challenge of creating guidelines and trainings that are both general enough to apply across the UN and flexible enough to adapt to different missions. Finally, it analyzes challenges the UN has faced in implementing this policy, from difficulties with coordination and data management to the lack of a sufficient gender lens. The paper recommends a number of actions for UN headquarters, peace operations, and member states in order to address these challenges: Optimize tasking and information sharing within missions by focusing on senior leaders’ information needs; Harmonize the content of peacekeeping-intelligence handbooks with standard operating procedures while ensuring they are flexible enough to account for differences among and between missions; Refine criteria for recruiting civilian and uniformed personnel with intelligence expertise and better assign personnel once they are deployed; Improve retention of peacekeeping-intelligence personnel and encourage member states to agree to longer-term deployments; Tailor peacekeeping-intelligence training to the needs of missions while clarifying a standard set of UN norms; Apply a gender lens to UN peacekeeping-intelligence; Improve coordination between headquarters and field sites within missions by adapting the tempo and timing of tasking and creating integrated information-sharing cells; and Establish common sharing platforms within missions.
  • Topic: Intelligence, United Nations, Peacekeeping, Civilians
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Namie Di Razza, Jake Sherman
  • Publication Date: 04-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: The effectiveness of UN peace operations depends on the “operational readiness” of their personnel, which refers to the knowledge, expertise, training, equipment, and mindset needed to carry out mandated tasks. While the need to improve the operational readiness of peacekeepers has been increasingly recognized over the past few years, the concept of “human rights readiness”—the extent to which consideration of human rights is integrated into the generation, operational configuration, and evaluation of uniformed personnel—has received less attention. This policy paper analyzes opportunities and gaps in human rights readiness and explores ways to improve the human rights readiness of peacekeepers. A comprehensive human rights readiness framework would include mechanisms to integrate human rights considerations into the operational configuration and modus operandi of uniformed personnel before, during, and after their deployment. This paper starts the process of developing this framework by focusing on the steps required to prepare and deploy uniformed personnel. The paper concludes with concrete recommendations for how troop- and police-contributing countries can prioritize human rights in the force generation process and strengthen human rights training for uniformed peacekeepers. These actions would prepare units to uphold human rights standards and better integrate human rights considerations into their work while ensuring that they deliver on this commitment. Ultimately, improved human rights readiness is a key determinant of the performance of UN peacekeepers, as well as of the UN’s credibility and reputation.
  • Topic: Security, Human Rights, United Nations, Peacekeeping
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Christian Lara, Gabriel Delsol
  • Publication Date: 05-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: In 2017, the UN launched a system-wide effort to support the implementation of the sustaining peace agenda in Burkina Faso. Since then, a rapidly deteriorating security situation and an imminent humanitarian crisis have forced the UN, the Burkinabe government, and their partners to recalibrate their efforts. This ongoing recalibration, together with the changes resulting from the UN development system reforms, makes this an opportune moment to assess the state of efforts to sustain peace in Burkina Faso. This paper examines the implementation of the UN’s peacebuilding and sustaining peace framework in Burkina Faso, looking at what has been done and what is still needed. It focuses on the four issue areas highlighted in the secretary-general’s 2018 report on peacebuilding and sustaining peace: operational and policy coherence; leadership at the UN country level; partnerships with local and regional actors; and international support. Burkina Faso provides lessons for how the UN’s sustaining peace efforts can respond to growing needs without a change in mandate. Continued support for the UN resident coordinator in Burkina Faso is necessary to ensure that these efforts are part of a holistic approach to the crisis, together with local, national, and regional partners. Such support could underpin Burkina Faso’s status as a buffer against spreading insecurity in the Sahel and make the country a model for the implementation of the sustaining peace agenda in conflict-prone settings without UN missions.
  • Topic: Development, United Nations, Peacekeeping, Peace, Sustainability, Humanitarian Crisis
  • Political Geography: Africa, Burkina Faso
  • Author: Patryk I. Labuda
  • Publication Date: 05-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Contemporary UN peace operations are expected to implement ambitious protection of civilians (POC) mandates while supporting host states through conflict prevention, peacemaking, and peacebuilding strategies. Reconciling these people-oriented POC mandates and the state-centric logic of UN-mandated interventions ranks among the greatest challenges facing peace operations today. This report explores how peace operations implement POC mandates when working with, despite, or against the host state. It analyzes the opportunities, challenges, and risks that arise when peacekeepers work with host states and identifies best practices for leveraging UN support to national authorities. The paper concludes that peacekeeping personnel in each mission need to decide how to make the most of the UN’s strengths, mitigate risks to civilians, and maintain the support of government partners for mutually desirable POC goals. The paper offers seven recommendations for managing POC and host-state support going forward: Persuade through dialogue: Peace operations should work to keep open channels of communication and better prepare personnel for interacting with state officials. Leverage leadership: The UN should better prepare prospective mission leaders for the complex POC challenges they will face. Make capacity building people-centered and holistic: The UN should partner with a wider group of actors to establish a protective environment while reconceptualizing mandates to restore and extend state authority around people-centered development initiatives. Induce best practices: Missions should leverage capacity building and other forms of support to promote national ownership and foster best practices for POC. Coordinate pressure tactics: Peace operations should make use of the full spectrum of bargaining tools at their disposal, including pressure tactics and compulsion. Deliver coherent, mission-specific messaging on the use of force: The UN should improve training, political guidance, and legal advice on the use of force, including against state agents. Reconceptualizing engagement with states on POC as a “whole-of-mission” task: The UN Secretariat should articulate a vision and mission-specific guidelines for partnerships with host governments on POC.
  • Topic: United Nations, Peacekeeping, Civilians
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Wasim Mir
  • Publication Date: 03-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: The UN is currently facing its most challenging financial situation in nearly two decades. Despite taking emergency measures to reduce spending, the UN Secretariat’s severe liquidity problems have been getting progressively worse, to the point where they are starting to affect the UN’s ability to carry out its mandates. The main cause of this crisis is the late payment and nonpayment of member-state contributions. This issue brief breaks down the reasons why certain member states have not been paying in full or on time, which include the withholding of payments to express concerns about specific UN activities and domestic financial difficulties. It then considers the proposals the secretary-general has put forward to address the crisis: replenishing the existing reserves, incentivizing member states to make timelier payments by invoking Article 19 of the UN Charter sooner, and limiting the General Assembly’s use of creative measures to reduce spending. Since these proposals currently have little backing from member states, the paper also suggests looking at alternative approaches, including allowing the UN Secretariat to borrow commercially or pool cash balances. As the domestic dynamics that lead to late payment and nonpayment will not change quickly, the paper urges member states not to ignore the issue and hope that it will resolve itself. They need to urgently consider what measures could help mitigate the crisis as soon as possible.
  • Topic: United Nations, Financial Crisis, Finance
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Agathe Sarfati
  • Publication Date: 06-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: The twin resolutions on peacebuilding and sustaining peace adopted by the General Assembly and Security Council in 2016 made a breakthrough in the UN’s conception of peacebuilding. Significant work has since been undertaken to reconfigure the UN system to work toward the implementation of these resolutions, and the UN Peacebuilding Commission has launched a comprehensive review of the peacebuilding architecture to be completed in 2020. To inform this review, this issue brief synthesizes findings related to the operationalization of the peacebuilding and sustaining peace resolutions at the country level. These findings emerged from three case studies published by IPI on Liberia, Papua New Guinea, and Burkina Faso. The operationalization of sustaining peace is assessed across four areas: (1) operational and policy coherence; (2) leadership, accountability, and capacity; (3) financing; and (4) partnerships. The paper concludes that much of the focus to date has been on improving the effectiveness of how the UN delivers its mandates on peacebuilding and sustaining peace. To fully realize the vision of the sustaining peace agenda, its operationalization must increasingly focus on the impact of these efforts. This requires questioning and testing the theory of change underpinning these operational reforms to ensure the UN is effectively helping societies build the foundation for sustaining peace.
  • Topic: United Nations, Peace, UN Security Council
  • Political Geography: Africa, Liberia, Papua New Guinea, Burkina Faso
  • Author: Gretchen Baldwin, Sarah Taylor
  • Publication Date: 06-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Over the past twenty years, UN peace operations have made progress toward gender equality. Most of their mandates refer to women or gender, and the UN and member states have agreed to numerical targets to increase the percentage of women peacekeepers. Meeting, and exceeding, these targets, however, will require the UN to better understand the barriers and often-unrealistic expectations facing uniformed women. This paper provides an overview of how the UN and troop- and police-contributing countries are trying to integrate uniformed women into missions and how mission mandates interact with the women, peace, and security agenda. It also expounds upon expectations of uniformed women in peacekeeping operations, specifically regarding the protection of civilians, as well as structural barriers, taboos, and stigmas that affect uniformed women’s deployment experiences. It is the first paper published under the International Peace Institute’s Women in Peace Operations project and provides an overview of research that will be conducted through May 2022. The paper concludes with initial findings and guidance for researchers and practitioners. It calls for the UN and member states to consider transformative possibilities for increasing women’s participation that push back against existing assumptions and norms. This requires grounding integration strategies in evidence, transforming missions to improve the experiences of women peacekeepers, and implementing a gendered approach to community engagement and protection.
  • Topic: Security, Gender Issues, Peacekeeping, Women, Peace
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Lesley Connolly, Jimena Leiva Roesch
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: On January 1, 2019, a far-reaching reform of the UN development system went into effect. This was referred to by the deputy secretary-general as “the most ambitious reform of the United Nations development system in decades.” While this reform has only briefly been in place, questions have already arisen about its implementation and implications. This issue brief aims to contribute to the understanding of this ongoing reform and its significance. It provides a detailed overview of the UN development system reform at the headquarters, regional, and country levels, highlighting why it was undertaken and identifying some of the political and bureaucratic complexities it entails. The report concludes that more than a year into the reform of the UN development system, significant progress has been made, but it is too early to assess the reform’s long-term impact. What is clear, however, is that bringing about change of this scope will require the UN to adapt not only its structure but also its way of working.
  • Topic: Development, United Nations, Sustainability
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Kevin S. Kennedy, Laura Powers
  • Publication Date: 02-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Due to their unique and complex nature, UN peacekeeping missions depend on effective leadership. Because few, if any, mission leaders have the requisite skills, knowledge, political judgment, and physical and mental stamina upon being selected, they require continuous, institutionalized, and sustained training and learning support. While the Secretariat has undertaken a number of training and learning initiatives, critical gaps remain. This paper identifies these gaps and analyzes obstacles that impede progress in addressing them. It looks at gaps in three broad areas: knowledge of peacekeeping doctrine, policy, and practice specific to UN peacekeeping; knowledge of UN policies and procedures on financial and human resources management; and leadership and team-building skills. To address these gaps, it recommends that the Secretariat prioritize action in several areas: Centralize responsibility for mission leadership training in a single unit; Integrate training into planning and recruitment processes; Provide more sustained support to training; and Employ new tools such as scenario-based exercises for in-mission training.
  • Topic: United Nations, Peacekeeping, Leadership
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Alice Debarre
  • Publication Date: 02-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Myanmar simultaneously faces multiple armed conflicts and crises, each with its own challenges. In Rakhine state, the government’s persecution of the Rohingya people has led to massive displacement, as have decades of armed conflict in Kachin and northern Shan states. Combined with chronic underdevelopment, these humanitarian crises have left people without access to adequate healthcare, leading international humanitarian actors to step in. The public health system in Myanmar is generally poor, and government funding for health services is among the lowest in the world. There are wide discrepancies in health services between rural and urban populations and between central and peripheral states. In Rakhine, there are only nine public health workers per 10,000 people, and access to secondary and tertiary healthcare is limited. Community-based or ethnic health organizations provide primary healthcare in many areas without government facilities. In crisis-affected areas, UN agencies and international and local NGOs play an important part in providing healthcare services. However, international action can be unbalanced both regionally and medically. In many areas, health actors have focused on responding to diseases like malaria, HIV/AIDS, and tuberculosis, leaving a critical gap in mental health services and clinical health responses to sexual and gender-based violence. Likewise, funding has been imbalanced, with Rakhine state receiving more funding than Kachin or northern Shan. This paper looks at the state of healthcare in Rakhine, Kachin, and northern Shan states, the role of humanitarian actors in the provision of health services, and the trends and challenges affecting the humanitarian health response. It provides several recommendations for improving the humanitarian health response in Myanmar, including: 1. Adjust the scope of the humanitarian response; 2. Advocate for better humanitarian access; 3. Strengthen local capacities, and; 4. Address the dilemmas inherent in providing aid amid a development and human rights crisis.
  • Topic: Health, Crisis Management, Public Health, Humanitarian Crisis
  • Political Geography: Southeast Asia, Myanmar
  • Author: Adam Lupel, Lauri Mälksoo
  • Publication Date: 04-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: The international rule-based order has come under threat on multiple fronts. If it continues to deteriorate into an older model based on power politics, small states—by definition vulnerable in a world where only might makes right—are most at risk. This makes them natural defenders of the international order that protects them. How can small countries serve as effective champions of the rule-based order and international law? This paper explores this question by looking at the role of small states on the UN Security Council. The council, with its five veto-wielding permanent members, is perhaps not an obvious place to look at the role of small states. Nonetheless, it presents critical opportunities, as well as difficult challenges, for small states. This paper concludes that small states on the Security Council are well-placed to provide an important, credible voice with moral authority to remind all member states of their obligations under international law, reaffirm normative commitments to compliance, and advocate for a recommitment to a multilateral, rule-based international order. Perhaps not since the founding of the United Nations has that voice been more necessary for all to hear.
  • Topic: International Law, United Nations, UN Security Council
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Albert Trithart
  • Publication Date: 04-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Following decades of war, economic decline, and underinvestment, Sudan’s healthcare system entered a new phase of crisis in 2019 as peaceful protests led to the ouster of President Omar al-Bashir. Among those leading these protests were doctors and other medical personnel fed up with poor working conditions and medicine shortages. This speaks to the degraded state of healthcare in the country, particularly in the conflict-affected regions of Darfur, South Kordofan, and Blue Nile. This paper looks at the humanitarian response to health-related needs in these conflict-affected parts of Sudan. After providing an overview of the state of Sudan’s healthcare system, it explores the main trends and challenges in the humanitarian health response, including the difficult partnerships between international and Sudanese health actors, restricted humanitarian access, and the effort to shift toward more sustainable approaches. It concludes that the humanitarian health response in Sudan is stuck: most agree on the need to move beyond short-term approaches, but the national capacity and development funding needed to make this transition are missing. At the same time, with newly accessible areas exposing unmet needs and conflict and displacement ongoing, a robust humanitarian response is still desperately needed. This situation calls for the UN, donors, and health NGOs to continue their efforts to respond to needs while strengthening the healthcare system, to coordinate humanitarian and development funding, and to advocate for maintaining and extending humanitarian access.
  • Topic: Health, Crisis Management, Humanitarian Crisis
  • Political Geography: Africa, Sudan
  • Author: Lesley Connolly, Laurie Mincieli
  • Publication Date: 05-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: The reforms to the UN development system, effective on January 1, 2019, marked the start of a new period for the UN presence in Liberia, making it one of the earliest test cases of a “next generation” UN country team. This comes less than a year after two other transitions: the withdrawal of the UN Mission in Liberia and the inauguration of a new Liberian president. On top of longstanding socioeconomic challenges, these transitions are testing the country’s ability to sustain peace. This paper, a publication of IPI and the Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC), examines the implementation of the UN’s peacebuilding and sustaining peace framework in Liberia, looking at what has been done and what is still needed. It focuses on the four issue areas highlighted in the secretary-general’s 2018 report on peacebuilding and sustaining peace: operational and policy coherence; leadership at the UN country level; partnerships with local and regional actors; and international support. It looks specifically at how the UN country team is adapting its strategy and operations in the wake of the recent transitions in Liberia. The changes taking place in Liberia illustrate that efforts to implement the secretary-general’s recommendations are already underway. The UN has implemented a new, innovative model centered on an empowered resident coordinator’s office, which has been able to effectively coordinate its approach with the Liberian government. Nonetheless, this office needs support to ensure that programming is oriented toward conflict prevention and connected to discussions at UN headquarters.
  • Topic: Development, United Nations, Reform, Peace, Transition
  • Political Geography: Africa, Liberia
  • Author: Marc Jacquand
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Particularly in the complex environments where it increasingly deploys, the UN depends on a range of functions to implement its mandate. These include but are not limited to provision of security, facilitation of access, medical support, support to staff welfare, logistics, coordination, and risk management. Compared to substantive tasks implemented as part of mandates, these enabling functions, or enablers, have received less scrutiny. As a result, enablers—and their financial costs—are often unknown or misunderstood by member states, donors, and even UN staff. This paper explores these enablers by explaining what they are, why they are needed, how much they cost, and how they are—or should be—funded. It then investigates the challenges the UN needs to tackle to put enablers on a path to sustainable funding, including: Reporting and consolidating data: While data is not the end point, it is a necessary starting point for the UN to engage in dialogue with those who use enablers and those who pay for them. Dedicating the necessary capacity: More spending on enablers is required now if lives and resources are to be saved later. Managing trade-offs: The UN needs to set and articulate clear priorities to guide the difficult trade-offs between different enablers and their associated risks. Integrating operations into planning: Operational planning is critical to avoid retroactive, ad hoc arrangements, especially during mission transitions. Communicating the importance of enablers: Effective communication on the need for enablers is necessary to convince member states and donors to fund them. Ultimately, there must be greater coherence between those who define UN mandates, those who fund them, and those who implement them.
  • Topic: United Nations, Capacity, Data, Operational Planning
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Lesley Connolly, Laurie Mincieli
  • Publication Date: 09-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Papua New Guinea is facing two major challenges to peace: a November referendum on the future political status of Bougainville, the site of a brutal conflict from 1989 to 1998; and the recent increase in intercommunal violence in the Highlands region. This makes it an important test case for the UN’s approach to peacebuilding and sustaining peace and the recent reforms to the UN development system. This paper, a publication of IPI and the Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC), examines the implementation of the UN’s peacebuilding and sustaining peace framework in Papua New Guinea, looking at what has been done and what is still needed. It focuses on the four issue areas highlighted in the secretary-general’s 2018 report on peacebuilding and sustaining peace: operational and policy coherence; leadership at the UN country level; partnerships with local and regional actors; and international support. Despite ongoing challenges in Papua New Guinea, implementation of the secretary-general’s recommendations on sustaining peace is already underway, offering examples of how to use the UN’s tools and resources to reduce and prevent violence and sustain peace. It reveals the importance of getting a resident coordinator with the right skill set; taking a long-term, preventive approach; building the capacity of government and civil society; ensuring continuous and flexible funding; and working with the Peacebuilding Commission to bring political attention in New York.
  • Topic: United Nations, Peace, Sustainability
  • Political Geography: Australia/Pacific, Papua New Guinea
  • Author: Daniel Forti, Priyal Singh
  • Publication Date: 10-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: The United Nations and the African Union (AU) have worked in tandem since the AU’s establishment in 2002. During this time, their partnership has evolved to focus increasingly on conflict prevention and crisis management, culminating in the 2017 Joint UN-AU Framework for Enhanced Partnership in Peace and Security. But while the organizations’ collaboration on peacekeeping has been extensively studied, other dimensions of the partnership warrant a closer look to understand how to foster political coherence and operational coordination. This report, done in partnership with the Institute for Security Studies (ISS), therefore considers the evolution of the strategic partnership between the UN and the AU, with a focus on their approach to conflict prevention and crisis management. It looks at this partnership at the member-state level in the UN Security Council and AU Peace and Security Council, as well as at the operational level between various UN and AU entities. It also assesses the partnership across several thematic issues, including the AU’s Silencing the Guns initiative; mediation; women, peace, and security; electoral support; peacebuilding and post-conflict reconstruction and development; and youth, peace, and security. Based on this analysis, the paper offers several recommendations to guide UN and AU stakeholders in improving cooperation. These include strengthening council-to-council engagement, working toward a collective approach to conflict prevention and crisis management, creating a dedicated team within the AU Peace and Security Department to support the partnership, better aligning work on peacebuilding and post-conflict reconstruction and development, building momentum on the AU’s Silencing the Guns initiative, and expanding diplomatic capacities to support the partnership.
  • Topic: Security, United Nations, Crisis Management, African Union
  • Political Geography: Africa, Global Focus
  • Author: Alexandra Novosseloff, Lisa Sharland
  • Publication Date: 11-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Since the end of the Cold War, the UN Security Council has authorized or recognized the deployment of more than forty parallel forces that operate alongside UN peace operations. As the Security Council has deployed peace operations in increasingly non-permissive environments, the division of labor between UN missions and these parallel forces has blurred, and their goals have sometimes come into conflict. This raises the question of whether they are partners or competitors. This report examines the missions that have operated in parallel to UN peace operations to identify how to strengthen these partnerships in the future. It analyzes and categorizes the types of parallel forces that have been deployed and examines the rationales for deploying them. It also looks at strategic and operational challenges, including the challenges unique to peace operations operating alongside a counterterrorism force. Finally, drawing on lessons from past and current parallel deployments, it offers recommendations for member states, the Security Council, and the UN Secretariat. These include: Strengthening coordination of assessments, planning, and application of UN standards: The UN and actors deploying parallel forces should conduct joint assessments and planning when deploying or reconfiguring missions. The UN Security Council should also engage more regularly with parallel forces and encourage the continued development of human rights compliance frameworks for them. Clarifying roles, responsibilities, and areas of operation: Peace operations and parallel forces should clearly delineate their responsibilities and areas of operation, assess the risks of collocating, and improve strategic communications with the local population. The Security Council should also continue to put in place mechanisms to strengthen the accountability of parallel forces, especially when peace operations are providing support that could contribute to counterterrorism operations.
  • Topic: United Nations, Peacekeeping, Armed Forces, UN Security Council
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Daniel Forti
  • Publication Date: 12-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: In the face of evolving security dynamics and geopolitical pressures, the African Union (AU) Peace and Security Council and the UN Security Council initiated the withdrawal of the AU-UN Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) in 2017. This transition is a uniquely complex undertaking—all the more so following Sudan’s political revolution in April 2019, which required the UN and AU to rapidly adapt their support to the country. This complex environment is putting all the principles of peacekeeping transitions to the test. This paper examines the dynamics of this peacekeeping transition in Darfur, focusing on UNAMID’s drawdown and reconfiguration, as well as the UN’s efforts to build the capacity of other actors to sustain peace following the mission’s exit. It highlights five broad priorities for this transition going forward: Strengthening political engagement between the UN Security Council and AU Peace and Security Council; Translating the AU-UN joint political strategy into an effective follow-on presence; Reinforcing the transition concept; Integrating human rights and protection in all areas of work; and Sustaining international attention and financial support. This paper is part of a larger IPI project on UN transitions and is complemented by similar case studies on UN peacekeeping transitions in Côte d’Ivoire, Haiti, and Liberia, as well as a paper exploring experiences and lessons from these three transitions.
  • Topic: Security, United Nations, Peacekeeping, Geopolitics, Crisis Management, African Union
  • Political Geography: Africa, Darfur, Haiti, Liberia, Côte d'Ivoire
  • Author: Alice Debarre
  • Publication Date: 12-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: In recent decades, sanctions have increasingly been used as a foreign policy tool. The UN Security Council has imposed a total of fourteen sanctions regimes alongside those imposed autonomously by the EU, the US, and other countries. Despite efforts to institute more targeted sanctions regimes, these regimes continue to impede or prevent the provision of humanitarian assistance and protection. This policy paper focuses on the impact of sanctions regimes in four countries: the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Syria, Afghanistan, and Somalia. It aims to assist the Security Council, relevant UN organs, UN member states, humanitarian actors, and other stakeholders in ensuring that humanitarian activities are safeguarded in contexts in which sanctions regimes apply. While there are no straightforward solutions, the paper offers several ways forward: Including language that safeguards humanitarian activities in sanctions regimes; Raising awareness and promoting multi-stakeholder dialogue; Conducting better, more systematic monitoring of and reporting on the impact of sanctions on humanitarian activities; Developing more and improved guidance on the scope of sanctions regimes; and Improving risk management and risk sharing. This paper is accompanied by an issue brief that provides further detail on the types of impact sanctions can have on humanitarian action.
  • Topic: Humanitarian Aid, Sanctions, UN Security Council
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, North Korea, Syria, Somalia, United States of America, European Union
  • Author: Alice Debarre
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Due to ongoing conflict and insecurity in northern Mali, 1.8 million people require humanitarian health assistance, and 2.5 million are considered food insecure. Given the level of need, Mali’s healthcare system is ill-equipped to respond, and humanitarian health actors play an important role filling the gaps. This issue brief maps the challenges these health actors face and assesses their response. It accompanies a policy paper published in 2018 entitled “Hard to Reach: Providing Healthcare in Armed Conflict,” as well as another case study on provision of healthcare in Nigeria. These papers aim to assist UN agencies, NGOs, member states, and donor agencies in providing and supporting the provision of adequate health services to conflict-affected populations. This issue brief concludes with recommendations for how health actors can improve delivery of health services in Mali: UN agencies, international NGOs, and donors should continue to focus on strengthening and supporting Mali’s community healthcare structures. Military, political, and humanitarian actors need to preserve the humanitarian space in Mali. Relevant UN agencies, local and international health NGOs, donors, and the Ministry of Health should place greater emphasis on noncommunicable diseases, particularly mental health. Humanitarian health actors and donors, as well as development actors and global health actors, should improve coordination with each other on the health response. Humanitarian health actors should better ensure that they are accountable for the health services they provide, in particular to affected populations.
  • Topic: Health, United Nations, Peace, Armed Conflict
  • Political Geography: Africa, Mali
  • Author: Alice Debarre
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: The humanitarian situation in Nigeria’s northeast is deteriorating, with more than 5 million people in need of healthcare and over 800,000 out of the reach of humanitarian actors. Given this level of need and the poor state of the healthcare system in northeastern Nigeria, humanitarian and other nongovernmental health actors play an important role. This issue brief maps the challenges these health actors face and assesses their response. It accompanies a policy paper published in 2018 entitled “Hard to Reach: Providing Healthcare in Armed Conflict,” as well as another case study on provision of healthcare in Mali. These papers aim to assist UN agencies, NGOs, member states, and donor agencies in providing and supporting the provision of adequate health services to conflict-affected populations. This issue brief concludes with recommendations for how health actors can improve delivery of health services in northeastern Nigeria: Humanitarian health actors should improve coordination both with each other and with global health actors working in northeastern Nigeria. Relevant UN agencies, local and international health NGOs, donors, and the Ministry of Health should scale up the response to under-prioritized health services. Humanitarian and development NGOs, donors, and the Ministry of Health should focus efforts to implement the humanitarian-development nexus for health services on areas where it is relevant and feasible. Humanitarian health actors should improve their accountability for the health services they provide. Humanitarian donors need to ensure that counterterrorism clauses in their funding contracts are not overbroad and do not impede neutral, independent, and impartial aid.
  • Topic: Health, Humanitarian Aid, Conflict
  • Political Geography: Africa, Nigeria
  • Author: Alice Debarre, Namie Di Razza
  • Publication Date: 02-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: In recent years, the UN and its member states have promoted comprehensive approaches and integrated structures and processes to improve coherence and consistency between political peacekeeping, humanitarian, human rights, and development efforts undertaken by the UN and its partners. For POC specifically, coordination between the military, police, and civilian components of peace operations; between peace operations and UN agencies, funds, and programs; and between the UN system and other protection actors has been pursued to maximize impact in the field. Joint planning, analysis, and action at these three levels are key to leveraging different types of expertise, tools, and responses in a holistic way in order to better prevent and respond to threats to civilians. However, while the UN’s normative and policy frameworks provide the basis for coordination and organizational arrangements have been set up to facilitate integrated efforts at these three levels, recent developments in the peace and security sphere have reinvigorated the debate over the costs and benefits of integration. Coordination for POC has proven to be increasingly difficult in non-permissive environments where, for example, peacekeepers may be perceived as party to the armed conflict or as having too close or tense a relationship with the host state or non-state actors. Integration in such contexts has led to debates around the preservation of humanitarian space, the independence of human rights advocacy, and the security of actors too closely linked to peacekeeping efforts. This issue brief analyzes the costs, benefits, and challenges of coordinated and integrated approaches to POC in peacekeeping contexts. It considers the added value of mission-wide and system-wide coordination for POC and concerns over comprehensive coordination between peacekeeping and humanitarian actors, which have different rationales and methodologies for protection. In a context of UN reform emphasizing prevention and political strategies, it questions the political and institutional push for more comprehensive POC strategies and reflects on the associated risks. It also offers considerations for how to coordinate and integrate multi-actor efforts in order to better protect civilians.
  • Topic: Human Rights, United Nations, Peacekeeping, Civilians
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Lesley Connolly, Sarah Taylor
  • Publication Date: 04-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Comprehensive leadership training is necessary to ensure that peace operations are effective and that senior leaders are prepared for both the daily challenges and the inevitable crises of peacekeeping. A gender perspective is of central importance to such training. However, gender considerations—from gendered conflict analysis to recognition of who is in the room when decisions are made—remain poorly understood at a practical level, including among senior mission leaders. This issue brief discusses what it means to apply a “gender perspective” and the importance of such a perspective for senior leaders to effectively implement mission mandates. It provides an overview of existing gender-related training and preparation techniques for senior leaders, including gaps. It concludes with a series of recommendations on how trainings and approaches to senior leadership training can better reflect these considerations: The current status of gender training for senior leaders should be assessed. Facilitators of trainings should ensure that their curricula address and respond to a peacekeeping workspace dominated by men. Facilitators should be aware that leaders often think they do not need training. Trainings for senior leaders should be designed to reflect the complexity of implementing women, peace, and security obligations in a mission. Efforts to ensure gender parity in senior mission leadership should be strengthened. Gender advisers should be included as formal members of a mission’s crisis management team and play an active role in decision-making bodies. Facilitators should understand the gender dimensions of a given training scenario and be aware of the gender balance among participants. The UN should develop resources for leaders, including key documents and guidance on understanding the gender dimensions of their mission.
  • Topic: Security, Gender Issues, United Nations, Women, Peace
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Wasim Mir
  • Publication Date: 04-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: UN peacekeeping missions are facing cash-flow problems and financial strains due to the late payment and withholding of assessed contributions. Since the inception of UN peacekeeping, the financing of missions has been a challenge, with periods of calm followed by periods of crisis. The UN has been particularly vulnerable to withheld and late payments from its biggest financial contributors. This has an impact on missions’ effectiveness and the ability of troop-contributing countries to deploy. This paper examines how member-state contributions to peacekeeping are calculated, historical and current financing challenges faced by peacekeeping missions, and ideas for placing UN peacekeeping on a firmer financial footing. It recommends reevaluating some of the rules and regulations that govern the management of UN peacekeeping. It specifically recommends: Creating a cash reserve for peacekeeping: A new reserve fund or the relaxation of restrictions to use of the existing reserve fund could help manage liquidity problems. Consolidating peacekeeping accounts: Consolidating the accounts for missions would significantly improve cash management and operational flexibility by allowing the Secretariat to borrow between the accounts of different missions. Streamlining budgeting: Aligning the billing process with the budget period would reduce bureaucracy, reducing the burden on both the Secretariat and member states. Incentivizing budgetary discipline: Allowing some flexibility on the crediting of savings to member states could improve liquidity and incentivize missions to be more disciplined in their spending. Encouraging prompt payments: To encourage member states to meet the deadline for payments, they could be penalized for making late payments or given positive incentives to pay on time.
  • Topic: United Nations, Peacekeeping, Finance outlook
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Fiona Blyth
  • Publication Date: 04-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: When the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) deployed in 2007, the AU and the UN Security Council expected that the United Nations would eventually take over from the AU force. But while a UN peacekeeping operation remains a theoretical option for the council, its prospects have diminished. Instead, the focus of Somali and international efforts has shifted to planning for AMISOM to transition directly Somali security forces without an interim UN mission. This issue brief outlines the factors behind this shift in intentions, including the new Somali administration’s commitment to assuming responsibility for security, a general agreement that the time had come for an exit strategy, and the Security Council’s reduced appetite for peace operations. It also lays out the objectives, approaches, and status of implementation of the Somali Transition Plan. Despite steady progress, there is still a long way to go in implementing this plan. Reforms are encountering resistance from vested interests, and al-Shabab poses an ongoing threat. Any sustainable transition from AMISOM must be a long-term project that includes not just a military handover but also political decisions on security and the structure of the state. It also depends on aligning national priorities and international efforts and the willingness of all security actors in Somalia to work together in a pragmatic, transparent, and coordinated way.
  • Topic: Security, United Nations, Peacekeeping, Transition, African Union
  • Political Geography: Africa, Somalia
  • Author: Jimena Leiva Roesch
  • Publication Date: 05-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: In late 2015, momentum toward implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development was steadily building in Guatemala. This momentum was driven by the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG) and protesters in the streets demanding action against corruption. Since 2017, however, a political standoff in Guatemala has started reversing these gains. A sustained reversal would undermine efforts to address the country’s longstanding socioeconomic needs. This study analyzes recent gains and setbacks in Guatemala’s efforts to implement the 2030 Agenda and provides recommendations for ways the country can fight corruption and securitization to sustain peace and promote sustainable development. It suggests better communicating the 2030 Agenda through multi-stakeholder outreach, improving monitoring or progress, aligning international aid with local objectives, and continuing to engage with the private sector. This issue brief is part of the International Peace Institute’s (IPI) SDGs4Peace project, which seeks to understand how the 2030 Agenda is being rooted at the national and local levels and to support the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. The project focuses on five case studies: Guatemala, the Gambia, Greece, Lebanon, and Myanmar. Implementation of the 2030 Agenda provides each of these countries an opportunity not only to buttress existing aspirations but also to build new partnerships that transcend traditional approaches.
  • Topic: Corruption, Development, Sustainable Development Goals, Peace
  • Political Geography: Greece, South America, Lebanon, Guatemala, Myanmar, Gambia
  • Author: Alice Debarre
  • Publication Date: 06-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: There are currently fourteen UN sanctions regimes, which member states are legally required to implement. Many of these are implemented in the context of armed conflict, where international humanitarian law outlines obligations to protect the provision of and access to principled humanitarian action. But despite efforts to make sanctions regimes more targeted, they continue to have unintended consequences, including impeding or preventing the provision of humanitarian assistance and protection—particularly when they coexist with counterterrorism measures. This issue brief explains the various ways in which sanctions regimes can impact humanitarian action. Acknowledging that this is not a new issue—though one that may be of increasing concern—it identifies several factors that make it challenging to resolve. Finally, it lays out some avenues for progress, pointing to existing efforts and highlighting where more could be done. Given that sanctions regimes are mostly targeted and that member states are bound to uphold the principles in the UN Charter and international humanitarian law (where it applies), sanctions should protect and not inhibit humani­tarian action. Where sanctions hinder aid, the impact on civilian populations is immediate, and efforts to backtrack will always come too late. Going forward, member states, the UN, financial institutions, and humanitarian actors should proactively and preventively tackle this problem. While the most effective courses of action will require political will, stakeholders at all levels can take incremental steps to help mitigate the impact.
  • Topic: Humanitarian Aid, International Law, Sanctions, Conflict, UN Security Council
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Daniel Forti, Lesley Connolly
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: UN peace operations are going through an accelerated period of reconfiguration and drawdown. Between June 2017 and March 2018, long-standing peacekeeping missions in Côte d’Ivoire and Liberia closed, while the mission in Haiti was reconfigured into a transitional peacekeeping mission. Looking ahead, the Security Council has mandated the closure of the peacekeeping mission in Darfur and the initial drawdown of the peacebuilding mission in Guinea-Bissau, and its attention is starting to shift to other missions. With these upcoming transitions in mind, this issue brief explores experiences and lessons from recent UN transitions in Côte d’Ivoire, Haiti, and Liberia. Each of these transitions has been the subject of a detailed IPI policy report published as part of IPI’s project on “Planning for United Nations Peacekeeping Operations Transitions.” Drawing on this research, this issue brief recommends how to manage politics and recalibrate policies to better shape future transitions. Its recommendations include to: Adopt shared and long-term political strategies, particularly in Security Council mandates and benchmarks, as well as through regular sharing of assessments from the field. Ensure integration in field-level planning strategies well before the Security Council sets transition timelines, with senior leadership from the mission shaping the vision, driving planning, and providing concrete recommendations for the future UN presence in the country. Strategically engage the host society to align peacebuilding priorities and to communicate the core message that the mission is leaving but the UN is remaining in the country. Engage early to secure adequate financing, capitalizing on debates surrounding the transition while it is still on the Security Council’s agenda. Institutionalize dedicated transition support capacity within the UN system, including policy and programmatic guidance, operational support, planning expertise, and surge capacities. Sustain long-term peacebuilding through partnerships, ensuring that residual peacebuilding challenges are mainstreamed into national development plans and international and regional development frameworks.
  • Topic: Development, United Nations, Peacekeeping, Crisis Management, Transition
  • Political Geography: Africa, Haiti, Liberia, Côte d'Ivoire
  • Author: Chuck Thiessen
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: In response to the threat of violent extremism, the UN has adopted a comprehensive approach that involves both aligning ongoing interventions with the goals of preventing violent extremism (PVE) and implementing PVE-specific programming. These initiatives aspire to use human rights-based approaches as opposed to hard-security counterterrorism responses. To date, however, there has been inadequate research on how the UN and other international organizations can promote human rights as part of their PVE programming. This issue brief introduces findings on the strategic shift of UN peacebuilding interventions toward PVE and the barriers these interventions face to protecting human rights, drawing on research conducted in Kyrgyzstan. It concludes that PVE approaches to peacebuilding are fundamentally ambiguous, which may be hindering promotion of human rights. These ambiguities lie both in the terminology and strategies of intervention and in the drivers of radicalization and violent extremism. By clarifying its approach to PVE, the UN can dilute the inherent contradiction in its dual role as a critic and supporter of host states and reduce the odds that its interventions legitimize human rights violations.
  • Topic: Security, Human Rights, United Nations, Violent Extremism
  • Political Geography: Central Asia, Kyrgyzstan, Global Focus
  • Author: Jake Sherman
  • Publication Date: 09-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: In September 2018, more than 100 UN member states signed a Declaration of Shared Commitments as part of the secretary-general’s Action for Peacekeeping (A4P) initiative. The declaration was intended to rally member states to address urgent challenges facing contemporary peacekeeping operations. But one year later, the declaration has not yet translated into concrete action by member states, limiting tangible results for missions on the ground. This issue brief takes stock of progress by the UN and member states in implementing A4P over the past year and looks at where there is momentum and where additional political attention is needed. There is consensus that A4P has helped reaffirm the value of peacekeeping. It also provides a roadmap for incremental reform, a platform for sharing good practices, and a framework for identifying progress. Moving forward, however, it needs to be more than a package of preexisting UN priorities; it needs to become a platform through which the secretary-general sets a new approach to strengthening peacekeeping.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, International Law, United Nations, Peacekeeping, Conflict
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Sarah Taylor, Gretchen Baldwin
  • Publication Date: 09-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: For two decades, the women, peace, and security agenda has been the subject of policy development internationally, regionally, and nationally. But by many indicators, the global status of these commitments to gender equality is under threat. In the multilateral system, a growing number of states are questioning established standards of women’s rights, while international policy and programming struggle to adapt to the gendered implications of the changing nature of conflict. This issue brief takes stock of the state of the women, peace, and security agenda in the current geopolitical context, with a view to supporting strategic advances at the upcoming twentieth anniversary of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 (2000). It looks at characteristics of the current geopolitical context that are of concern to the defense of women’s rights, what these changes have meant for how the international community seeks to build peace and improve security, and how we can evaluate approaches to implementing WPS commitments in relation to these pressures on the multilateral system. The paper concludes that in order for the women, peace, and security agenda to be an effective tool, it must move beyond rhetoric and be woven into actionable policy. It must become a driving force behind the development and implementation of peace and security policy and programming rather than being buffeted by political considerations that elide the status and rights of women. This depends on a sustainable increase in resources and improved accountability within the multilateral system.
  • Topic: Security, United Nations, Women, Multilateralism, Accountability, Peace
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Sarah Taylor, Gretchen Baldwin
  • Publication Date: 10-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: As the twentieth anniversary of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 (2000) on women, peace, and security (WPS) approaches, the ad hoc nature of and limited accountability for implementation of the WPS agenda are undermining its full promise. This is despite increasing recognition that efforts to build and sustain peace are dependent upon the full participation of women and respect for their rights. There is thus a need for concerted, strategic commitment to addressing the remaining gaps in implementation of the WPS agenda. This paper identifies opportunities for the twentieth anniversary of the adoption of Resolution 1325, particularly for the UN Security Council, its member states, and the UN system. It builds on IPI’s scene-setting issue brief “The Global Pushback on Women’s Rights: The State of the Women, Peace, and Security Agenda.” The paper concludes with several steps the UN and the international community can take to support substantive progress on WPS: Use creative mechanisms to increase women’s participation: The multilateral system can support new initiatives such as the regional women mediator networks. Leverage the tools of the UN Security Council: The council should consistently request gender-sensitive analysis and recommendations, mainstream the WPS agenda across all policies, and better integrate the work of the Informal Expert Group on WPS into its daily work. Significantly strengthen accountability: Increasing accountability requires changing the political calculus for engaging on the WPS agenda, particularly at the national level. Move the focus to the field: Dialogue around WPS needs to shift from UN headquarters in New York to focus more on the countries and regions grappling with conflict. Increase financing: Donors should increase their financial commitments to the WPS agenda and ensure funding supports long-term peacebuilding efforts.
  • Topic: Security, Gender Issues, Treaties and Agreements, United Nations, Women, Peace
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Paul D. Williams
  • Publication Date: 10-2019
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Deployed to Mogadishu in March 2007, the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) operates through a complicated and extensive system of partnerships. This has been referred to as the “AMISOM model” of “partnership peacekeeping.” While this specific configuration of forces and mechanisms is unlikely to be repeated, AMISOM remains the longest-standing case of a peace enforcement operation built on such international partnerships. If the AU and UN are going to continue deploying missions into such difficult environments, AMISOM’s experience offers lessons for how partnership peacekeeping can work better. This report summarizes the main operational-level lessons across seven themes: force generation, logistics, security sector reform, protection of civilians, strategic communications, stabilization, and exit strategy. Many of these lessons have not been truly learned, internalized, and acted upon by the actors and organizations in question.
  • Topic: Security, United Nations, Peacekeeping, Reform, Partnerships, Africa Union
  • Political Geography: Africa, Somalia
  • Author: Alice Dabarre
  • Publication Date: 03-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: While humanitarian action was traditionally designed to be a short-term emergency response, this is increasingly perceived as inaccurate and even undesirable. Humanitarian actors have acknowledged a responsibility to work toward bridging the “humanitarian-development divide” and not to overlook the nexus between addressing and reducing humanitarian needs and building the foundations for sustaining peace.
  • Topic: International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Publication Date: 02-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Current drug policy too often has a negative impact on communities and runs counter to efforts to ameliorate poverty through sustainable development. However, this is often not captured by the metrics used to measure the impact of drug policy. One way to improve these metrics is to align them with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This would not only help overcome many of the limitations of drug policies resulting from suboptimal metrics but also make sure these policies enhance, rather than hinder, efforts to achieve the SDGs.
  • Topic: International Affairs, Narcotics Trafficking
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Lesley Connolly, Cheryl He
  • Publication Date: 01-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: In December 2016 Gambians took to the polls and successfully replaced longtime president Yahya Jammeh with current President Adama Barrow, ushering in a political transition. More than a year into this transition, the country is at a tipping point. Public expectations remain high, and the list of competing priorities, from increasing economic opportunities to implementing transitional justice, is long.
  • Topic: International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Gambia
  • Author: Guillio Coppi
  • Publication Date: 01-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Two years into its current crisis, Yemen is torn apart by an interlinked series of conflicts with intricate and mobile front lines. These have resulted in what the UN has called “the largest humanitarian crisis in the world.” While compounded by decades of conflict, violence, and underdevelopment, the major cause of the humanitarian crisis in Yemen remains the conflict between the two competing governments, along with the intervention of the Saudi-led coalition.
  • Topic: International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Yemen
  • Author: Els Debuf
  • Publication Date: 01-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: IPI’s research project on mechanisms to investigate attacks on healthcare aims to assist the Security Council, relevant UN organs, member states, and other stakeholders in operationalizing Resolution 2286 and the UN secretary-general’s recommendations for its implementation. The project focuses on recommendations regarding the use of international mechanisms to ensure that the “full, prompt, impartial and effective investigations” required by Resolution 2286 are carried out when parties to the conflict are unable or unwilling to do so themselves. Through a combination of desk research, key informant interviews, and an expert meeting bringing together stakeholders in the implementation of Resolution 2286 and experts on international fact-finding and investigation into violations of international humanitarian law, the project developed a set of tools, available on this page. These include:
  • Topic: International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Mona Christophersen
  • Publication Date: 04-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: The 2030 Agenda calls for inclusiveness, which can contribute to stability and peace as well as development in Lebanon. However, while Lebanon’s power-sharing model was instrumental in ending fifteen years of civil war, it is outdated as the country embarks on a process to achieve the 2030 Agenda and advance the seventeen Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Although sectarianism is impeding political processes and development in Lebanon, the SDGs can provide an opportunity for the country to address some of the political model’s limitations. Based on two weeks of field research, this paper explores how Lebanon is confronting challenges related to the environment, education, economic growth, poverty, and gender, all while hosting more than a million Syrian refugees. This paper is part of the International Peace Institute’s (IPI) SDGs4Peace project, which seeks to understand how the 2030 Agenda is being rooted at the national and local levels and to support the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. The project focuses on five case studies: the Gambia, Greece, Guatemala, Lebanon, and Myanmar. Implementation of the 2030 Agenda provides each of these countries an opportunity not only to buttress existing aspirations but also to build new partnerships that transcend traditional approaches.
  • Topic: Politics, Sectarianism, Sustainable Development Goals, Peace
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Lebanon
  • Author: Mona Christophersen, Svein Erik Stave
  • Publication Date: 04-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Over the last five years Myanmar has gone through fundamental changes as it transitions toward peace and democracy. This transformation provides Myanmar with a unique opportunity to build a peaceful and inclusive society and advance on the path to sustainable development and sustaining peace. Yet at the same time, Myanmar remains submerged in conflict and lacks national consensus on the future of the state. Achieving the 2030 Agenda in Myanmar will therefore require an inclusive and conflict-sensitive approach that takes into account the views not only of the central government but also of ethnic-minority groups. Based on an eighteen-day field study in Myanmar in 2017, this paper examines the country’s progress toward sustainable development and sustaining peace from these divergent perspectives. This paper, co-funded by the Fafo Research Foundation, is part of the International Peace Institute’s (IPI) SDGs4Peace project, which seeks to understand how the 2030 Agenda is being rooted at the national and local levels and to support the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. The project focuses on five case studies: the Gambia, Greece, Guatemala, Lebanon, and Myanmar. Implementation of the 2030 Agenda provides each of these countries an opportunity not only to buttress existing aspirations but also to build new partnerships that transcend traditional approaches.
  • Topic: Development, Sustainable Development Goals, Conflict, Peace
  • Political Geography: Southeast Asia, Myanmar
  • Author: Lucile Maertens, Malkit Shoshan
  • Publication Date: 04-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: The 2010 cholera outbreak in Haiti, triggered by the UN mission there, killed more than 9,000 people and affected nearly 807,000. This disastrous case drew attention to the negative effect UN peace operations can have on the surrounding communities and environment—something peacekeepers had started paying attention to with the deployment of new large-scale operations in the 2000s. As operations have grown in size, so too has the size of their environmental footprint. This report looks at the environmental impact of peace operations and how the UN has responded, including through policies and guidelines, dedicated staff, and training material. In particular, it assesses the challenges the Department of Field Support faces in implementing its Environment Strategy. Based on this assessment, which includes a detailed examination of the UN mission in Mali, the report puts forward a series of short-, medium-, and long-term recommendations. It concludes that a UN presence should not be a source of stress but should improve local environmental sustainability and build resilience.
  • Topic: Environment, United Nations, Peacekeeping, Peace
  • Political Geography: Africa, Mali, Global Focus
  • Author: Paul D. Williams, Thong Nguyen
  • Publication Date: 04-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: The last decade has seen more UN peacekeepers than ever before coming from countries neighboring the host state. This report uses the IPI Peacekeeping Database to explore this increase in neighborhood contributions between 1990 and 2017. While less than 3 percent of all UN peacekeepers came from next-door neighbors in the early 1990s, this number had increased to about 20 percent by 2017. This trend runs counter to a longstanding, if unwritten, principle that UN peacekeeping missions should seek to avoid deployment of troops or police from neighbors in order to mitigate the risks associated with these countries’ national interests in the host countries. It also means there would be significant implications if policymakers wished to reverse this trend, which would put major additional pressure on the UN’s force generation process.
  • Topic: United Nations, History, Peacekeeping
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Zach Vertin
  • Publication Date: 04-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: In 2013, the world’s newest nation—the Republic of South Sudan—descended into civil war. External actors moved quickly to convene peace talks under the auspices of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), leading to a comprehensive peace deal in August 2015. But the agreement unraveled just a year later, before it could be implemented, and the war metastasized. This paper examines the IGAD-led peace process for South Sudan from 2013 to 2015. Viewed through a prism of mediation best practice, it is a critical assessment of the attempt to negotiate a settlement of the conflict and a distillation of lessons learned. While singular conclusions are hard to draw, the paper concludes that the process may have helped to slow South Sudan’s civil war and provided a platform to confront the fundamental changes required to transform state and society. But inherent flaws meant the peace deal lacked the political will, broad national ownership, and implementing authorities necessary to make it stick. As IGAD member states and international partners now attempt to “revitalize” the peace process, they would be wise to evaluate, and build upon, its lessons.
  • Topic: Development, Treaties and Agreements, Peace, Mediation
  • Political Geography: Africa, South Sudan
  • Author: Lisa Sharland
  • Publication Date: 05-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Partnerships are critical to effective UN peacekeeping, particularly in New York, where the Security Council, the Secretariat, and member states examine proposed reforms and seek consensus on the direction of peacekeeping. Yet throughout the nearly seventy-year history of UN peacekeeping, relations among key stakeholders have frequently fractured due to their often diverging interests. These differences have been compounded by member states’ limited access to information on the roles and responsibilities of different UN bodies in taking forward peacekeeping reforms. This paper examines the intergovernmental processes and partnerships that support and guide the development of UN peacekeeping policy to identify what needs to be considered to build consensus on its future direction. The paper offers several recommendations for the Secretariat, member states, and other stakeholders to strengthen the value and outcomes of intergovernmental processes, as well as the partnerships that guide the formulation of UN peacekeeping policy: Foster understanding of UN peacekeeping challenges and the policymaking process. Strengthen consultation mechanisms. Demonstrate leadership and identify a shared vision. Improve information sharing, reporting, and accountability. Encourage awareness of challenges in the field among stakeholders in New York.
  • Topic: United Nations, Peacekeeping, Policy Implementation, UN Security Council
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: José S. Vericat, Mosadek Hobrara
  • Publication Date: 06-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Libya’s overarching statelessness, and the violence and lawlessness that result, permeate the country, which is plagued by local-level conflicts. However, local mediation efforts have flourished over the last few years. As a senior UN official noted, “Local mediation is the best thing that has happened in Libya since the revolution.” This report examines these local mediation processes to explore the significance of their impact. It focuses on the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) and the support it provides internal efforts in Libya to solve local conflicts or the mediation of such disputes. It also describes and analyzes how Libyans themselves are able to address and resolve local conflicts, or at least contain their escalation. The report offers a number of lessons based on the challenges UNSMIL has faced in supporting local mediation efforts in Libya. These include the importance of leveraging soft power, taking a coordinated and long-term approach, linking the local and national levels, ensuring sovereignty and local ownership, intervening through local mediators, and expanding beyond traditional political actors.
  • Topic: Politics, United Nations, Peace, Mediation
  • Political Geography: Libya, North Africa
  • Author: Alexandra Novosseloff
  • Publication Date: 06-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: The UN Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) completed its mandate on June 30, 2017, after more than thirteen years. One year later, the secretary-general is set to release his “comprehensive study of the role of UNOCI in the settlement of the situation” in the country. This presents an opportunity to examine the many stages or “lives” of a peacekeeping operation, something often overlooked. This report aims not only to contribute to this learning process but also to go beyond the scope of the secretary-general’s study to examine the trajectory of UNOCI over the years. It provides a historical account of the various phases of the Ivorian crisis and examines how UNOCI evolved and adapted to the circumstances and how the Security Council dealt with the Ivorian dossier. Based on this assessment, the report draws lessons from UNOCI for other peacekeeping missions. These include the challenges missions face when the consent of the host state is fragile, a permanent member of the Security Council is heavily involved, they have a mandate to certify elections, they take a robust approach to a crisis, they undertake both disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration and security sector reform processes, and the UN applies sanctions or arms embargoes.
  • Topic: Security, United Nations, Sanctions, Peacekeeping
  • Political Geography: Africa, Côte d'Ivoire
  • Author: Alexandra Novosseloff
  • Publication Date: 06-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: The UN Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) completed its mandate on June 30, 2017, after more than thirteen years. One year later, the secretary-general is set to release his “comprehensive study of the role of UNOCI in the settlement of the situation” in the country. This presents an opportunity to examine the many stages or “lives” of a peacekeeping operation, something often overlooked. This report aims not only to contribute to this learning process but also to go beyond the scope of the secretary-general’s study to examine the trajectory of UNOCI over the years. It provides a historical account of the various phases of the Ivorian crisis and examines how UNOCI evolved and adapted to the circumstances and how the Security Council dealt with the Ivorian dossier. Based on this assessment, the report draws lessons from UNOCI for other peacekeeping missions. These include the challenges missions face when the consent of the host state is fragile, a permanent member of the Security Council is heavily involved, they have a mandate to certify elections, they take a robust approach to a crisis, they undertake both disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration and security sector reform processes, and the UN applies sanctions or arms embargoes.
  • Topic: Security, United Nations, Sanctions, Peacekeeping
  • Political Geography: Africa, Côte d'Ivoire
  • Author: Alice Debarre
  • Publication Date: 09-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: In the past decade, counterterrorism measures have had an increasingly adverse impact on the provision of medical care and the conduct of principled humanitarian action in armed conflict settings. Whether inadvertently or not, they have impeded, and at times prevented, the provision of essential and lifesaving aid, often in violation of international humanitarian law (IHL). This paper aims to assist the Security Council, relevant UN organs, UN member states, and other stakeholders in upholding their obligations under IHL. It maps the UN counterterrorism framework and looks into the extent to which it guides states in complying with these obligations. In doing so, it offers several recommendations for the way forward: All UN resolutions and other UN and national policies that pertain to counterterrorism should contain an exemption for humanitarian activities. Every relevant UN counterterrorism measure should continue to reiterate that counterterrorism efforts need to comply with international law. Humanitarian actors should engage with UN counterterrorism structures more actively, strategically, and systematically. UN bodies that engage in counterterrorism should systematically include humanitarian actors in relevant conversations. The UN Counter-Terrorism Committee’s Executive Directorate and Office of Counter-Terrorism should better integrate IHL considerations into their work. Member states, UN entities, humanitarian actors, counterterrorism and sanctions experts, and other stakeholders should step up efforts to start a wide political discussion on tensions between counterterrorism and humanitarian action.
  • Topic: Health, Humanitarian Aid, United Nations, Violent Extremism, Counter-terrorism
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Lesley Connolly, Laura Powers, Senzwesihle Ngubane, Patrick Kanyangara, Kessy Ekomo-Soignet, Nicolas Chamat Matallana, Stephen Kirimi, Hasini Haputhanthri, Masana Ndinga-Kanga, Webster Zambara
  • Publication Date: 09-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: In recent years, there have been increasing calls to ensure local ownership of peacebuilding design and practice, to take local knowledge fully into account in designing peacebuilding programs and assessing conflicts, and to strive for the meaningful participation of local peacebuilding actors. In the search for new approaches to connect local-level initiatives to international programs and to move local knowledge from the bottom up, community-led peacebuilding networks may have a key role to play. This volume includes case studies of community-led peacebuilding networks in Burundi, the Central African Republic, Colombia, Kenya, Liberia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, and Zimbabwe to identify approaches for more inclusive and integrated peacebuilding. These case studies, written by local peacebuilders working in each of the countries, underscore the organizational, political, and financial advantages and risks to operating as part of a broader network. The aim of this report is to enhance understanding among international peacebuilding practitioners and policymakers of peacebuilding network structures, including their comparative advantages and challenges. In doing so, it aims to guide efforts not only to incorporate local knowledge and expertise into international initiatives but also to identify how these efforts can support and magnify local efforts. By better understanding how local peacebuilding networks operate in their communities, the international community can begin to better understand the challenges local organizations face, how to support and strengthen peacebuilding work on the ground, and how such initiatives contribute to building and sustaining peace.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Women, Youth, Networks, Peace, Community
  • Political Geography: Kenya, Africa, South Asia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Colombia, Liberia, Zimbabwe, Burundi, Central African Republic
  • Author: Ralph Mamiya
  • Publication Date: 10-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Engaging non-state armed groups (NSAGs) is an essential tool for the protection of civilians (POC), a priority mandate and core objective for peace operations. Beyond the use of force to prevent or stop armed groups from threatening local populations, multidimensional missions can use a wide range of unarmed strategies, such as dialogue and engagement, to counter hostilities from non-state actors. This paper looks at how, when, and why UN missions engage with NSAGs. It gives an overview of current practice, drawing on the experiences of the missions in Afghanistan, the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Mali. It then examines the risks of engaging NSAGs and how POC mandates can help missions navigate these risks. Finally, it looks at peace operations’ unique capacities to engage with NSAGs and how best to leverage them. Civilian protection is ever more urgent, and engaging NSAGs is crucial to this work. A pragmatic approach, anchored in POC considerations, can help guide missions through potentially polarizing debates and safeguard UN principles while simultaneously allowing them to adapt more effectively to the challenges they face.
  • Topic: United Nations, Non State Actors, Peacekeeping, Armed Forces, Civilians
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Africa, Central Asia, Mali, Central African Republic, Congo
  • Author: Namie Di Razza
  • Publication Date: 10-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: In the non-permissive environments where they are often deployed, UN peace operations need to be increasingly creative to implement their mandate to protect civilians. They face particularly acute challenges in contexts marked by violent extremism, such as Mali, where attacks by terrorist groups have greatly constrained the capacity of peacekeepers to protect local populations. This paper explores the operational challenges that the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) faces in implementing its protection mandate. It analyzes protection threats related to violent extremism in Mali and explores the protection strategy, tools, and activities developed by the UN mission to address those threats. It highlights some of the practical constraints of operating in a hostile environment and added complications related to the mission’s proximity to non-UN counterterrorism forces. The Malian case demonstrates that each peacekeeping theater needs to be its own laboratory for POC and that approaches, tools, and mechanisms are not directly replicable from one UN mission to another. The report makes three recommendations to improve the delivery of MINUSMA’s protection mandate: Explore the full spectrum of military, police, and civilian tools; Ensure the independence of MINUSMA’s POC activities from counterterrorism agendas; and Design and articulate a political strategy that prioritizes POC.
  • Topic: United Nations, Peacekeeping, Violent Extremism, Civilians
  • Political Geography: Africa, Mali
  • Author: Alice Debarre
  • Publication Date: 12-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Armed conflict is a global health issue. Long-lasting and protracted conflicts in particular have consequences not only for the war-wounded but also for the health of entire communities. Over the years, global health actors and humanitarian health actors have developed health policies, guidelines, frameworks, and structures to improve delivery of health services in emergencies or humanitarian crises. Despite these advancements, however, the international health response in conflict-affected settings still faces gaps and challenges. Some policies and frameworks need to be rethought or redesigned, while others need to be better implemented. This paper explores challenges to healthcare provision in conflict-affected settings. These challenges are broadly broken down into three categories: constraints related to the health system and damaged health infrastructure, difficulty for health workers to access populations in need, and restrictions to healthcare provision intentionally or accidentally placed by donors or states engaged on humanitarian and health issues (e.g., through the securitization of healthcare). Tackling these challenges will have a direct impact on the lives of people in conflict-affected settings. However, doing so requires a radical shift in mindsets and the incentives that guide the actions of international health actors. Even so, more incremental changes can also be beneficial. To that end, this report puts forth the following recommendations: Improve coordination between and among humanitarian, development, and global health actors; Respond to context-specific needs; Hold health actors accountable to affected populations for their performance, and; Make responses sustainable. This work is based on a combination of desk research, interviews with more than seventy key informants, and an expert meeting bringing together key stakeholders and experts on global and humanitarian health.
  • Topic: Health, Humanitarian Aid, Conflict
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Daniel Forti, Lesley Connolly
  • Publication Date: 12-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: From 2003 to 2018, the UN Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) was ever-present throughout the country. The peacekeeping mission’s work, and its transition out of the country, are considered positive examples of how the UN can support countries through conflict and post-conflict phases. Nevertheless, UNMIL’s transition offers many lessons that member states, UN officials, and international partners can learn in order to strengthen future UN peacekeeping transitions. This paper examines the process of Liberia’s transition from a peacekeeping mission to a UN country team configuration, focusing on the period from July 2016 to July 2018. It identifies the political and operational dynamics that drove the transition, examines the policy processes and context within which the transition was executed, and assesses the ability of the UN’s post-mission configuration to sustain peace in Liberia. The paper underscores that member states and the UN Secretariat should change their approach to transitions from racing against deadlines to instead viewing them as processes that begin well before a peacekeeping mission closes and continue for several years after the mission ends. By viewing transitions as long-term, multi-stakeholder activities, member states have the opportunity to ensure that future transitions adopt integrated approaches with adequate political, operational, and financial support.
  • Topic: United Nations, Peacekeeping, Peace, Transition
  • Political Geography: Africa, Liberia
  • Author: Alexandra Novosseloff
  • Publication Date: 12-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: In April 2016, after four years of progressive downsizing, the Security Council decided to close the UN Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) within a year. This decision reflected a consensus that it was time for UNOCI to leave and hand over to the UN country team with no follow-on mission. However, the transition was abrupt, without sustained dialogue, capacity transfer, or financial fluidity, leaving the UN country team unprepared to take on the mission’s responsibilities. This policy paper examines the political dynamics in Côte d’Ivoire and in the Security Council that led to the decision to withdraw UNOCI, as well as the stages of the withdrawal and handover. It also analyzes the gaps and shortcomings that left the country team ill-prepared to take over, highlighting two main challenges. First, the Security Council viewed the transition as a political process. Its objective of withdrawing the mission superseded all others, leading it to underestimate, if not overlook, the continued peacebuilding needs of the country. Second, the transition was accompanied by waning donor interest, undercutting programming by the country team in priority areas like reconciliation, security sector reform, human rights, and land tenure.
  • Topic: Security, United Nations, Peacekeeping, UN Security Council, Transition
  • Political Geography: Africa, Côte d'Ivoire
  • Author: Namie Di Razza
  • Publication Date: 12-2018
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: The process of reconfiguring, closing, and handing over responsibilities to a UN country team or host-state institutions is a crucial—and challenging—part of the life cycle of a UN peacekeeping mission. Transitions have been a central feature of UN peacekeeping in Haiti, in particular, which has gone through numerous transitions since the 1990s. This paper focuses on the two most recent peacekeeping transitions in Haiti: one from the UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) to the UN Mission for Justice Support in Haiti (MINUJUSTH), or from a multidimensional peacekeeping operation involving a substantial military component to a small peace operation focused on police and rule of law; and the ongoing transition toward the closure of MINUJUSTH and preparations for the eventual handover to other actors. For both missions, the paper focuses on three issues: (1) transition planning, including the political dynamics that influenced decision making, gaps between plans and the reality on the ground, and the limited role of the host state, UN country team, civil society, and donors; (2) management, logistical, and administrative challenges; and (3) issues related to business continuity and changes in substantive areas of work. It concludes by offering lessons learned from the past and current transitions that can inform the next drawdown and exit of peacekeepers from Haiti.
  • Topic: United Nations, Peacekeeping, Transition
  • Political Geography: Caribbean, Haiti