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Palgrave Macmillan

Japan’s Peacekeeping at a Crossroads

Taking a Robust Stance or Remaining Hesitant?

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  • Open Access
  • © 2022

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  • This book is open access, which means that you have free and unlimited access
  • Explores Japan’s engagement with peacekeeping in a comprehensive and detailed fashion
  • Offers a historical, legal, and political overview of developments since the end of WWII
  • Reflects on concepts of and differences between International Peace Cooperation and International Peace Operations

Part of the book series: Sustainable Development Goals Series (SDGS)

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Table of contents (9 chapters)


About this book

This open access book examines why Japan discontinued its quarter-century history of troop contribution to UN Peacekeeping Operations (1992–2017). Japan had deployed its troops as UN peacekeepers since 1992, albeit under a constitutional limit on weapons use. Japan’s peacekeepers began to focus on engineering work as its strength, while also trying to relax the constraints on weapons use, although to a minimal extent. In 2017, however, Japan suddenly withdrew its engineering corps from South Sudan, and has contributed no troops since then. Why? The book argues that Japan could not match the increasing “robustness” of recent peacekeeping operations and has begun to seek a new direction, such as capacity-building support. 


“This carefully researched book offers fascinating insights into three puzzles: why Japanese governments expanded their contributions to UN peacekeeping since the early 1990s; why Tokyo withdrew its military engineers from South Sudan in 2017; and what this means for future (limited) Japanese engagement in UN and other peace operations.” (Stephen Baranyi, University of Ottawa, Canada)

“This book is the most comprehensive review to date of Japan’s post-Cold War peacekeeping history. It explains how Japan’s post-war constitution, and the tensions between its domestic and international politics influenced its peacekeeping policy. It should be essential reading for everyone who wants to understand Japan’s contribution to UN peacekeeping.” (Cedric de Coning, Norwegian Institute of International Affairs, Norway)

“Japan’s Peacekeeping at a Crossroads is a timely examination of the trajectory of Japanese contributions in this area of global security. The volume analyses Japan’s changing international strategic and domestic motivations to engage in peacekeeping. It takes a fresh and critical approach and fills an important gap in the extant literature.” (Christopher W. Hughes, University of Warwick, UK)

Authors and Affiliations

  • Aoyama Gakuin University, Tokyo, Japan

    Hiromi Nagata Fujishige

  • Waseda University, Tokyo, Japan

    Yuji Uesugi

  • Chukyo University, Nagoya, Japan

    Tomoaki Honda

About the authors

Hiromi Nagata Fujishige is Associate Professor in the School of International Politics, Economics and Communications at Aoyama Gakuin University, Tokyo, Japan. 

Yuji Uesugi is Professor of Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding in the School of International Liberal Studies and the Graduate School of International Culture and Communication Studies, Waseda University, Tokyo, Japan. 

Tomoaki Honda is Associate Professor in the Faculty of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Chukyo University, Aichi, Japan.

Bibliographic Information

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