On Tuesday afternoon the U.N. Security Council unanimously adopted Resolution 1769, which authorizes the deployment of a 26,000-strong United Nations-African Union hybrid peacekeeping force to Darfur. Yet much needs to be done to ensure that it deploys rapidly and with the requisite components to protect civilians.
The ENOUGH Project, an initiative to end genocide and crimes against humanity, detailed the necessary elements for a successful mission in its recent report “Six Peacekeeping Essentials for Peace and Protection in Darfur”:
- A civilian protection mandate
- U.N. management of the mission
- Manpower drawn from throughout the world, not just Africa
- Logistical and air support for greater mobility
- A methodology that includes robust civilian and political elements
- Money to sustain the A.U. force and fully fund the hybrid A.U./U.N. force
“Absent any one of these six critical components–mandate, management, manpower, mobility, methodology, and money–the hybrid peacekeeping mission is unlikely to adequately protect civilians,” says author and ENOUGH co-Chair Gayle Smith.
The mission, called the U.N. African Union Mission in Darfur, does have a mandate under Chapter VII of the U.N. Charter to “take the necessary action” to protect civilians and will be under U.N. command and control. Between now and when the United Nations plans to take command of the mission at the end of 2007, policymakers and mission planners have an opportunity to ensure that all six components are in place.
Resolution 1769 is weaker than the U.S. and U.K. governments had proposed. Significantly, it contains no threat of sanctions should the government of Sudan impede deployment of UNAMID, as Khartoum did to the current A.U. force. Nor is the hybrid force authorized to seize and destroy illegal arms, a vital step in reducing the violence.
Alongside recommendations to ensure civilian protection, the ENOUGH strategy paper addresses the other two prongs of the “3P” approach: the need for robust diplomacy to secure a viable, lasting peace accord, and the essential role that multilateral punitive measures can play in holding Khartoum to its word.
“Without a credible threat of effective multilateral sanctions for non-compliance, Khartoum is likely to throw up roadblocks to this mission at every turn,” according to ENOUGH Policy Advisor Colin Thomas-Jensen.
The ENOUGH Project is an initiative to end genocide and crimes against humanity.
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