The independent resource on global security

2. Armed conflict prevention, management and resolution




In 1994 some of the world's longest running and most intractable armed
conflicts were resolved or brought closer to resolution, most notably those in
Angola, Northern Ireland, South Africa and Mozambique. Although not engaged in
armed conflict for decades, Israel and Jordan sealed their de facto
peace with a treaty, while Israelis and Palestinians took major steps in
implementing their peace agreement. A seemingly satisfactory solution in
Haiti also ensued.

Gross inadequacies in the international community's capacity for preventing and
containing armed conflict were revealed by Rwanda's genocidal massacres,
Yemen's brief but bloody civil war and Russia's attempt to quell Chechnya. Of
the major new armed conflicts that erupted in 1994, those in Rwanda and Yemen
ran their course without a negotiated settlement, and that in Chechnya
continued unabated into 1995.

Of the armed conflicts least amenable to negotiated settlement in 1994, the
most widely publicized was that in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Others included
civil wars in Algeria, Afghanistan, the Caucasus and Tajikistan. The most
elaborate attempt at conflict management, keeping armed conflict at as low a
level as possible, occurred in the former Yugoslavia--in Croatia and Bosnia and
Herzegovina. Efforts of a similar kind but less intense, mostly carried out by
UN and other multilateral peacekeeping missions, continued in various parts of
the world, including Cyprus, Georgia (Abkhazia and South Ossetia), Lebanon and

The UN continued on its reform path but was more cognizant of its own
limitations, while the Security Council was less willing to intervene robustly
either with peacekeeping or peace enforcement operations. The debate about the
use of force by or on behalf of the UN was sharpened by the termination of the
ill-fated Somali mission and the continuing failure of the international
community to bring Bosnia closer to peace, whether through negotiations,
sanctions or NATO air power.


Appendix 2A. Multilateral observer, peacekeeping and electoral operations, 1994


Appendix 2A is a table of international observer, peacekeeping and electoral operations in


Appendix 2B. Extracts from the Clinton Administration's policy of reforming multilateral peace operations

Appendix 2B reproduces a document on US policy
for reforming multilateral peace operations.


Appendix 2C. Case study on peacekeeping: Rwanda



The international community failed to
respond effectively to the massacre of up to 1 million Rwandans in politically
motivated ethnic violence. The UN Assistance Mission for Rwanda (UNAMIR),
constrained by its limited mandate and resources, was unable to halt the
killings, which constitute one of the worst instances of genocide in this
century. Deployed in October 1993 to oversee the implementation of a
transitional political process, the peacekeeping force was initially scaled
down by the Security Council in April after the simultaneous eruption of
preplanned massacres of opposition politicians and Tutsi and a resumption of
the civil war.

Later efforts to expand UNAMIR, first delayed by US adherence to its new
restrictive policy on peace operations, brought out the limitations of the UN's
capability for rapid reaction. In spite of the existence of UN stand-by
arrangements, the Secretariat struggled for months to raise the necessary
troops and equipment while refugees inundated camps on Rwanda's borders, where
their armed incursions continue to destabilize the region. In the interim,
France launched a multilateral humanitarian mission in June.