Regional International Organizations as Conflict Managers: The Limits and Capabilities
AbstractThere has been, especially since the end of the cold war, greater emphasis on the roles of regional international organizations in conflict management. With the increased spate of armed conflicts over the past two decades, demand for conflict management has consequentially increased. Though interstate wars evidently declined since the post-cold war, but intrastate wars and civil conflicts have increased both in number and variety. Beyond traditional civil wars, the international system has experienced a relatively new phenomenon in form of failed or disrupted states. Such also foster instability in regions as well as carrying a human toll that often exceed that from civil wars. Global organizations have been overburdened with these challenges, resulting in limited attention to some areas as well as donor fatigue. The UN and leading states have seemingly ignored certain civil wars and failed states. This leaves gap that has assumed the concern of regional organizations, many of which cannot afford to ignore the conflict and civil wars at their doorsteps. How well conflict matters have been handled in conflict-torn zones by regional organizations has been a concern in the International Relation scholarship. Therefore, to probe the capabilities and effectiveness of regional international organizations in conflict management, and the challenges that assail their new roles as conflict managers in the international system, forms the concern of this paper.
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