GoJIL Vol. 2, No. 2 (2010)
The Future of Peacekeeping in Africa and the Normative Role of the African Union
Charles Riziki Majinge
While it has been the responsibility of the United Nations to conduct peacekeeping operations on the continent, the trend is gradually changing. African Union and its regional organizations (RECs) are increasingly assuming responsibility of securing peace and stability on the continent. Many reasons militate in favour of this trend. Chiefly the unwillingness of the United Nations Security Council and developed countries to intervene timely and adequately to avert humanitarian catastrophes as happened in Rwanda, Southern Sudan and Angola. Furthermore, the desire of Africa to take steps to address its own problems without heavily relying on assistance from the international community whose availability is neither assured nor sufficient. This contribution argues that Africa can no longer expect the international community to shoulder the burden of peacekeeping in some of the most intractable conflicts on the continent without taking steps to participate in the process itself. While Africa has expressed its desire to address its own problems through the vision of "African solutions for African Problems", African leaders must show greater willingness to fund and strengthen institutions they establish to carry out this vision. Lastly, the paper contends that the international community, especially developed states should take genuine and adequate measures to assist Africa realize its vision. A strong African Union capable of securing peace and stability on the continent is in the best interests not only of Africa but also of the international community as a whole.
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