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The Neutralization of Protracted Conflicts: The Case of UNTAC

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Part of the Global Issues Series book series (GLOISS)

Abstract

In light of increasing revelations of human rights abuses within state boundaries, the traditional concept of state sovereignty is called into question. As a result, UN intervention in failing or failed states has become more widely accepted as an international practice.1 This chapter asks: Can the UN play a role in neutralizing protracted domestic conflicts?

Keywords

Security Council Peace Process Khmer Rouge Peace Agreement Paris Agreement 
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Notes

  1. 1.
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  3. 3.
    Some scholars warn of the perils of military intervention in ethnic conflict. See William A. Stofft and Gary L. Guertner, ‘Ethnic Conflict: The Perils of Military Intervention’, Parameters (Spring 1995 ), pp. 30–42.Google Scholar
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    This chapter is not intended to provide a detailed background to the Cambodia conflict and the negotiation process leading to the signing of the Paris Agreement in October 1991. For background analysis, see Ramses Amer, Johan Saravanamuttu and Peter Wallensteen, From Intervention to Resolution (Penang, Malaysia: Sinaran Bros Sdn. Berhad, 1996 );Google Scholar
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    For the UN to be effective, it must be professionalized, streamlined and provided with resources adequate to carry out its tasks. Barry Blechman, ‘The Intervention Dilemma’, Washington Quarterly, 18, 3 (Summer 1995), pp. 63–73. Adequate performance will add to the adversaries’ perceptions of security and will encourage their cooperation with the United Nations, thus making the organization’s efforts more effective. According to Ingrid Lehmann, the UN operations in Yugoslavia and Somalia did not go very well because they failed to obtain support from influential segments of the population. Lehmann, however, argues that the more successful UN operations in Namibia and Cambodia benefited from strong information programmes.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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    In this context, the preventive nature of UN peace-oriented activity should be compatible with former UN Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjöld’s imaginative concept of preventive diplomacy as opposed to former US President Woodrow Wilson’s concept of collective security with punitive measures in mind. For differences between preventive diplomacy and collective security, see W. Andy Knight and Mari Yamashita, ‘The United Nations’ Contribution to International Peace and Security’, in David Dewitt et al. (eds.), Building a New Global Order: Emerging Trends in International Security (Toronto: Oxford University Press, 1993), especially pp. 330–1.Google Scholar

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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2001

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