A European Return to United Nations Peacekeeping? Opportunities, Challenges and Ways Ahead
International Peacekeeping. 2016: 23(5) [Link]
This introductory article outlines the main rationale of the Special Issue and places the topic of the so-called ‘European Return to United Nations Peacekeeping’ in the wider context of recent policy developments and conceptual discussions related to the literature on UN troop contributions. It then outlines some of the key findings of the nine case studies (Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Sweden, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom) included in this issue. The article concludes that despite a recent engagement of a group of European countries in the Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA), expectations of a large-scale ‘return of Europe’ to UN peacekeeping are premature. While the MINUSMA experience will certainly spark important discussions and developments related to the future of UN peacekeeping and Western contributions, European countries will continue to commit only selectively troops on a case-by-case basis and only if a wide range of facilitating factors align as much as they did in the Mali case.
This project receives funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Grant Agreement No 722826.