Food aid

The relationship between peace operations and humanitarian assistance: Enabling or harmful?

United Nations and other peace operations are routinely mandated to protect and support humanitarian actors. Recent events in the Central African Republic (CAR), Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), and Mali, is a reminder of the complex environment peace operations and humanitarian actors share and the challenges this pose at times for their relationship.

On 9 September 2020, The Norwegian Centre for Humanitarian Studies (NCHS) and the Effectiveness of Peace Operations Network (EPON) organized a joint webinar on the relationship between peacekeeping and humanitarian efforts.

Peace operations are one of the most important international mechanisms for contemporary conflict management and are often undertaken in places which faces the worst humanitarian crises in the world. It is thus common that their mandates include providing protection and assistance to humanitarian actors and assistance efforts. How effective is the support provided by peace operations to humanitarian assistance? Has UN operations unwittingly caused harm in some situations? Have humanitarian actors put peacekeepers in harm’s way or otherwise complicated their ability to achieve their mandates? How does humanitarian and peacekeeping actors coexist, coordinate and cooperate in different country settings?

This webinar focused on the relationship between peacekeeping and humanitarian assistance in three case studies that were presented by Carlo Koos (CMI), Lise Morjé Howard (Georgetown & EPON) and Natasja Rupesinghe (NUPI & EPON). Kari Osland (NUPI) and Kristoffer Lidén (PRIO) commented, and the panel was moderated by Cedric de Coning (ACCORD & NUPI).

Watch the webinar here.