Innovations in Peace-Keeping: The Case of Albania

Peer-reviewed Journal Article

Kostakos, Georgios; & Bourantonis, Dimitris (1998) Innovations in Peace-Keeping: The Case of Albania , Security Dialogue 29(1): 49–58.

In recent years, interventions have become more assertive on humanitarian grounds: UN peace-keepers have been entering conflict areas even if there was no peace to keep, and even if their acceptance by the parties was questionable. The interests of the troop-contributing countries are hardly concealed, especially of the major powers that have taken the lead away from the neutral states. Albania seems to offer a case for studying these new trends. The basic principle of UN peace-keeping - neutrality and impartiality - was reasserted in the mandate issued by the UN Security Council, but respect for this principle was left up to the sponsors of the force, who brought in heavily armed troops ready for more than self-defence. This return to unabashed state-centrism and multinationalism rather than internationalism constitutes an important new trend in international peace-keeping. Functions that were once performed collectively are now handed over to individual states which are driven by their particular interests, while collective institutions continue mainly as loose regulatory authorities.