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HERRBERG A. - EU Peace Mediation in International Conflict Resolution (25h)

International peace mediation is a growing and recognised professional practice field for diplomats and those working in international affairs. Since the end of the Cold War the practice of peace mediation has been on the rise; conflicts are increasingly solved through negotiation and third-party intervention rather than military intervention. This relatively new phenomenon created a new dynamic and caused a number of mediation actors to emerge on the international scene: from the UN to regional organisations such as the OSCE and the African Union, as well as international and local NGOs, all of which play different, complementary and sometimes competitive roles in conflict resolution.
The rise of international peace mediation as a professional practice and the increased attention of the UN, the EU and its member states also pose challenges, related to the increasing complexity of conflicts. The recent UN Guidance for Peace Mediation shows a reinforced political will to make conflict resolution through mediation as efficient as possible. As other professions, mediation is an art, a skill, and a craft. Mediation is a profession in many member states of the EU, but peace mediation and mediation support have become an independent field of expertise. However, the concept and practice of mediation is often misunderstood, especially in the diplomatic context, which is often power-driven. Therefore, a ‘sensibilisation’ to peace mediation in the global practice of international affairs and diplomacy is indispensable. Mediation can help anybody in everyday relations and it is necessary on the path towards global peace. Understanding conflict and mediation requires also a deeper appreciation of the connection between the body and mind in conflict, thus it starts with one-self.
Since 2009, the member states of the EU have explicitly recognised the need to make professional and efficient peace mediation an indispensable tool of the EU. The European External Action Service has created a team specifically dedicated for mediation support. It is clear that the EU, through its High Representatives, the EUSRs and the Heads of EU Delegations, positions itself as an actor in peace mediation (e.g. Kosovo, Iran, Ukraine, Georgia). Moreover, peace mediation practice is also relevant to development, post conflict interventions, etc.

Professor: Antje HERRBERG

ECTS Card 2018-2019