31 July 2018

How UN sanctions affect mediation processes?


In a new publication, UN sanctions: liability or asset in mediation processes?, released today by the Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue (HD), Professor Thomas Biersteker, Dr Rebecca Brubaker and Dr David Lanz examine the impact on peacemaking of sanctions imposed by the United Nations (UN).

Drawing on observations from cases in Afghanistan, Libya, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan and Yemen, the authors address five preconceived ideas about those sanctions, namely that they do not work, are inflexible, prevent mediators from talking to sanctioned parties, enable leverage, and imperil mediators’ impartiality.

The publication highlights early lessons from an ongoing two-year collaboration on the subject between the United Nations University, the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies and swisspeace, with support from the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs.

UN sanctions: liability or asset in mediation processes? is available as a free download from HD's website