n African Security Review - A force for good? : the European Union and human security in the Democratic Republic of Congo : essay

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Human security is part of the policy identities of both the African Union (AU) and the European Union (EU). In the EU, human security is not an explicit policy, but can be seen as embedded in initiatives such as conflict prevention and crisis management. The EU's military mission to the Democratic Republic of Congo (EUFOR RDC) in 2006 has been the most striking example so far of the EU using human security as a methodology for its external engagement, and this experience is expected to establish a framework for future military and civilian assistance to Africa.

This paper elaborates a European concept of human security based on five operating principles and evaluates EUFOR RDC against these principles to show how, in all but name, the DRC mission was a human security initiative. It proposes that this kind of human security approach is not only significant for the development of the EU as an international security actor, but could signal an important shift in the relationship between the EU and Africa, changing the terms of discourse between the two continents.


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