Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Chinese Peacekeeping (English and French)

The Centre for International Policy Studies at the University of Ottawa published in January 2019 a study titled "30 Years of Chinese Peacekeeping" by Christoph Zurcher.

Over the past three decades, China has evolved from a skeptic into a champion of UN peacekeeping. China now has about 2,500 personnel assigned to nine UN peacekeeping missions, including Mali, South Sudan, Democratic Republic of Congo, Central African Republic, Darfur, and Western Sahara. Most of its peacekeeping personnel are in Africa, where most UN peacekeeping operations take place. China also contributes 10 percent of the UN peacekeeping budget, second after the United States at 28 percent.

China emphasizes its commitment to peacekeeping is guided by respect for sovereignty and non-interference; the importance of the primacy of political solutions; and respect for the peacekeeping principles of impartiality, consent of the parties, and use of force only as a last resort.

The author concludes that China should be given credit where it deserves credit and UN peacekeeping is a case in point. That does not mean, however, that the West should ignore the fact that China will increasingly promote its own concepts on peace building, some of which are are odds with Western concepts of democracy building and human rights in peacekeeping missions.

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