The Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) was formed to aid U.N. Member States and the Secretary-General in their efforts to alleviate human suffering, and to create conditions and construct institutions that promote self-sustaining peace. The U.N.’s first peacekeeping mission began in 1948, shortly after the birth of Israel. Since then, there have been 59 total peacekeeping missions across the globe. In the summer of 2004 there were 16 in operation on four continents.
Much of the information in this section is from the Web site on the U.N.’s Department of Peacekeeping Operations.
| U.N. Peacekeepers at a Glance|
|Peacekeeping Operations* since 1948:||59|
and civilian police serving in peacekeeping operations as of May 31, 2004:
|Countries contributing military personnel and civilian police as of May 2004:||97|
|International civilian personnel as of May 2004:||3,405|
|Local civilian personnel as of May 2004:||6,508|
|Total number of fatalities in peacekeeping operations from 1948 through May 2004:||1,870|
|Proposed budget for July 2004 to June 2005:||About $2.65 billion|
|* Operation is a renewal or re-provisioning of a previous peacekeeping or political effort.|
** The term military personnel refers to military observers and troops, as applicable. Fatality figures include military, civilian police, and civilian international and local personnel in United Nations peacekeeping operations only.
Years there: Less than one, established June 2004*
Current budget: Undetermined as of August 2004
Current U.N. personnel: Troops 2,259; civilian police 224; international civilian personnel 161; local civilian staff 150
Underlying conflict: Extreme poverty and overcrowding, coupled with systemic government corruption, have led to a long violent past in Haiti. The most recent wave of conflict stems from a rebellion against the government of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide.
* United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) is one of several missions to Haiti since 1993. All have been designed to bring a cessation of hostilities and give humanitarian aid to Haitians. MINUSTAH is also attempting to create an interim government and stabilization of security.
- Western Sahara
Years there: 13, established in 1991 after a cease-fire was called between Morocco and POLISARIO freedom fighters
Current budget: $43.40 million
Current U.N. personnel: Troops 27; military observers 194; civilian police 4; international civilian personnel 130; local civilian staff 107
Underlying conflict: The land was called Spanish Sahara until 1976, when Spain ceded the area after a nationalist uprising that became the POLISARIO Front. First Mauritania, and then Morocco, laid claim to the fertile sea-front lands. POLISARIO combatants continued to stage attacks, finally declaring themselves a sovereign nation in 1982. Ultimately the fighting drove an estimated 150,000 Sahrawi people into exile within the borders of four refugee camps inside the Algerian Sahara desert. In April 1991, the Security Council established the United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO), which was designed to ease Western Sahara's transition to statehood. Since then, the Sahrawi have been waiting on a U.N.-brokered referendum that would determine their status. But that vote has been postponed due to disputes over eligible voters. Nonetheless, the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (government-in-exile) is recognized by the Organization of African Unity and by several dozen individual nations as the legitimate government of Western Sahara.
Years there: Five, established 1999
Current budget: $329.74 million
Current U.N. personnel: Troops 37; civilian police 3,603; international civilians 785; local civilians 2,741
Underlying conflict: Starting in 1997, ethnic Albanian forces launched a guerrilla campaign to regain provincial autonomy or possibly win liberation from Serbia. Serb military forces under the control of then President Slobodan Milosevic retaliated, which started a period of ethnic cleansing and a mass exodus of refugees. The United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) was established to perform a wide range of tasks from repatriation of refugees, to basic needs fulfillment as well as helping to facilitate the rebuilding of an autonomous political system in the region.
- Republic of Georgia
Years there: 11, established 1993
Current budget: $32.10 million
Current U.N. personnel: Uniformed personnel 130; military observers 119; civilian police 11; international civilian personnel 102; local civilian staff 184
Underlying conflict: Long-time tensions and demands for autonomy by the Abkhaz people of Georgia came to a head in 1992 when fighting broke out and left 200 dead. A cease-fire agreement brokered but the United Nations Observer Mission in Georgia (UNOMIG) was established in 1993 to help verify compliance with the cease-fire.
Years there: 40, established 1964
Current budget: $45.77 million
Current U.N. personnel: Troops 1,229; civilian police 45; international civilian personnel 42; local civilian staff 107
Underlying conflict: After Cyprus declared independence in 1960, civil unrest broke out between the island's ethnic Turkish and Greek citizens. Political and military support from both Turkey and Greece contributed to the tension, and the United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) was established to cool hostilities and to maintain the integrity of a buffer zone that was established in 1974.
- Israel/Palestine Territory
Years there: 56, established 1948
Current budget: $27.69 million
Current U.N. personnel: Military observers 153; international civilian personnel 91; local civilian staff 112
Underlying conflict: Unrest between Israel and its Arab neighbors began shortly after the partition of Israel and Palestine and the creation of the Israeli state in 1948. United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO) was the first U.N. peacekeeping operation, created in 1948 and continuously manned for more than 56 years. UNTSO has been called upon numerous times to quiet conflicts and enforce cease-fires between Israel and the Palestinians as well as between Israel and its immediate neighbors.
- Israel/Lebanon Territory
Years there: 26, established 1978
Current budget: $94.06 million
Current U.N. personnel: Troops 1,997; military observers 50; international civilian personnel 107; local civilian staff 294
Underlying conflict: When Lebanese commandos attacked Israel in 1978, Israel invaded. The United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) was created to enforce Israeli withdrawal from Lebanon, monitor and attempt to quell violence. It is the third of three U.N. peacekeeping operations in the Middle East.
Years there: 30, established 1974
Current budget: $41.81 million
Current U.N. personnel: Troops 1,038; military observers 80; international civilian personnel 37; local civilian staff 93
Underlying conflict: In October 1973, Egypt and Syria attempted to regain control of land occupied by the Israelis since 1967. The conflict that ensued became known as the Yom Kippur War and forced the U.N. to step in and establish United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF), its second peacekeeping effort in the region.
- India/Pakistan Border
Years there: 55, established 1949
Current budget: $7.25 million
Current U.N. personnel: Military observers 43; international civilian personnel 22; local civilian staff 44
Underlying conflict: India and Pakistan became independent countries in 1947. By U.N. decree, the people of Kashmir were left to choose which country to join; but when they elected to join India, fighting broke out. The United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) has been in place to monitor a cease-fire agreement created in 1949 and re-established in 1971.
- Ethiopia and Erithrea
Years there: Four, established 2000
Current budget: $196.89 million
Current U.N. personnel: Troops 3,681; military observers 215; international civilians 238; local civilians 268
Underlying conflict: Eritrea gained its independence from Ethiopia in 1993, but in 1998 a border dispute resulted in two years of conflict. The United Nations Mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea (UNMEE) was established to verify a cease-fire signed in 2000 and to maintain agreed security provisions.
- Côte d'Ivoire
Years there: Less than one, established April 2004*
Current budget: $502.35 million
Current U.N. personnel: Troops 4,735; miliary observers 148; civilian police 133; international civilian personnel 185; local staff 113
Underlying conflict: Previously one of the most stable African governments, Côte d'Ivoire had its first military coup in 1999. Stability rapidly deteriorated after rigged elections and another coup. Rebel forces later took control of part of the country.
* The current United Nations Operation in Côte d'Ivoire (UNOCI) replaces a previous political mission which was established to aid a peace agreement between the parties that was signed in May 2003.
- Sierra Leone
Years there: Five, established 1999
Current budget: $543.49 million
Current U.N. personnel: Troops 9,464; military observers 255; civilian police 116; international civilian personnel 285; local civilian staff 530
Underlying conflict: A ten-year civil war pitted various government-backed armies against rebel forces. After several U.N. brokered attempts at peace, the United Nations Mission in Sierra Leone (UNAMSIL) was called in to disarm the combatants and enforce a peace accord signed in 1999. The mission has expanded several times to take on new tasks.
Years there: One, established 2003*
Current budget: $564.49 million
Current U.N. personnel: Troops 13,375; military observers 192; civilian police 1,049; international civilian personnel 390; local staff 485
Underlying conflict: More than a decade of civil war pitted government and rebel forces against each other, and left 150,000 dead and another 850,000 as refugees. Several U.N. observer missions were called in to attempt to aid cease-fire agreements.*United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) is the latest and largest mission, the first having been established in 1993. UNMIL was created to stop worsening violence and aid in the implementation of another cease-fire agreement signed in August 2003.
- Democratic Republic of the Congo
Years there: Five, established 1999
Current budget: $667.27 million
Current U.N. personnel: Troops 9,925; military observers 568; civilian police 139; international civilian personnel 697; local civilian staff 966
Underlying conflict: Ethnic unrest increased by huge migrations of refugees from neighboring Rwanda and Burundi helped lead to civil war and ongoing violence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DROC). In 1998 military forces from Zimbabwe, Angola, Namibia, Chad, and Sudan intervened and fighting continued until a cease-fire was signed in July 1999 by the DRC, Zimbabwe, Angola, Uganda, Namibia, Rwanda, and Congolese armed rebel groups. Sporadic fighting continued, and the United Nations Organization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUC) was established to oversee and aid peace efforts, monitor human rights conditions, and stop cross-border arms trafficking among other initiatives.
Years there: Less than one, established June 2004
Current budget: Undetermined as of August 2004
Current U.N. personnel: Troops 2,561; military observers 98; international civilian personnel 152; local civilian staff; 34
Underlying conflict: Burundi has been in a state of civil war since 1993 when its first democratically elected president was assassinated. Sporadic fighting between Hutu and Tutsi rebel factions, as well as between government forces and coalitions from each group has left thousands dead, and thousands more displaced. A transitional government was installed in 2001, and a cease-fire signed in 2002, but tensions remain as one rebel group refuses to participate. Elections are scheduled for the second half of 2004. United Nations Operation in Burundi (ONUB) was deployed in June 2004 to oversee the cease-fire, disarmament of combatants, and reconciliation between the parties.
- East Timor
Years there: Two, established 2002*
Current budget: $217.16 million
Current U.N. personnel: Troops 422; military observers 43; civilian police 139; international civilians 260; local civilians 585
Underlying conflict: A quarter century of conflict in East Timor stems from a disagreement over whether East Timor should become an autonomous nation or join Indonesia. Further violence broke out in 1999 after a referendum affirmed their desire for independent rule.*The United Nations Mission of Support in East Timor (UNMISET) followed on previous U.N. missions dating back to 1999 that were created to help quell violence between the factions, and begin the referendum process. The current mission's mandate is to aid East Timor authorities in establishing a new government and help to ensure the peace and security of the country.