oa ACCORD Occasional Paper - A gender perspective for conflict management

Volume 2000, Issue 4
  • ISSN : 1608-3954



The post-Cold War era has been characterised by an increase in the number and complexity of conflicts. United Nations (UN) peacekeeping operations, as defined by the secretary-general in the 1992 Agenda for Peace, have expanded and become increasingly complex. Today, UN peacekeeping missions include more non-military / civilian components, which are involved in preventive diplomacy, conflict resolution, peacemaking and post-conflict peace-building. These civilian components have resulted in a broadening of the range of personnel and skills deployed beyond the traditional role of the military. Although external influences can never be overruled, most conflicts have been characterised by an intra-state nature. The most striking feature of these conflicts has been their impact on civilians, who have been both perpetrators and victims. In the background, one is faced with the breakdown of the state, with vast human rights abuses, abject poverty and other social skills. As a result, there is an expanding need for the participation of women in peacekeeping operations and reconstruction. In the past, women have been largely excluded from most roles in peacekeeping missions, and have also enjoyed limited participation in the civilian components of peacekeeping missions.

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