When Do-Gooders Do Harm: Accountability of the United Nations toward Third Parties in Peace Operations

Journal of International Peacekeeping, Vol. 20, 2016, Forthcoming

20 Pages Posted: 17 Aug 2016 Last revised: 16 Jan 2017

See all articles by Kevin C Chang

Kevin C Chang

The University of Sydney - Department of Peace and Conflict Studies

Date Written: August 2016

Abstract

The United Nations’ mandate in a peace operation can be multidimensional, ranging from ceasefire monitoring to investigating human rights abuses to post-conflict stabilisation and recovery. The exercise of wide-ranging powers comes with risks of failure and unintended consequences. Like any organisation, the UN is subject to flaws in decision-making that may result in harmful impact to the local population. Until recent times, international lawyers have paid scant attention to the UN’s potential to inflict harm in the pursuit of its noble aims. The expansion of the UN’s role over the decades has given rise to greater awareness of its accountability gap under international and municipal laws. The organisation’s response to recent claims from third parties illustrates the challenges that lie before victims in attaining accountability in a manner consistent with international human rights standards. This paper examines the multifarious questions of accountability of the UN toward third parties in peace operations. It argues that greater accountability is most practically achieved not through attempts to close gaps in international law, but through giving effect to existing mechanisms by applying a balancing approach to immunity and strengthening internal oversight and redress mechanisms.

Keywords: United Nations, International Organisation Law, Peacekeeping, Human Rights, Accountability, Legal Responsibility, Immunity, Third Parties, Tort

Suggested Citation

Chang, Kevin C, When Do-Gooders Do Harm: Accountability of the United Nations toward Third Parties in Peace Operations (August 2016). Journal of International Peacekeeping, Vol. 20, 2016, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2821551 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2821551

Kevin C Chang (Contact Author)

The University of Sydney - Department of Peace and Conflict Studies ( email )

University of Sydney
Sydney
Australia

HOME PAGE: http://www.sydney.edu.au

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
181
Abstract Views
922
rank
164,290
PlumX Metrics