You are on page 1of 62

Table of Contents

Chair Introductions 2

Historical Background & Scope of the Committee 4

The Situation in Burundi 5
Topic Description 5
Background Information 6
Past UN Actions 16
Position of Major Nations and Blocs 17
Timeline of Events 19
Definition of Key Terms 24
Guiding Questions 28
Further Research 28
Bibliography 30

Peacekeeping and Statebuilding in Post Conflict Regions 31
Topic Description 31
Background Information 32
Past UN Resolutions 34
Position of Major Nations and Blocs 37
Definition of Key Terms 40
Guiding Questions 41
Further Research 42
Bibliography 44

The Situation in Libya 45
Topic Description 45
Background Information 46
Position of Major Nations and Blocs 52
Timeline of Events 53
Definition of Key Terms 58
Guiding Questions 59
Further Research 60
Bibliography 61

Chair Introductions

My name is Matheus Bevilacqua and it is with great honor
that I will be serving as the Chair for the Security Council in
this year’s BRAMUN. I am currently a senior at the American
School of Campinas and have been participating in MUN
conferences since 8th Grade. I have a true fascination for
MUN and, so far, I have attended a total of 12 MUN
conferences, six of which I have served as a Chair. Outside
of MUN, science, movies, and television series are among
my greatest passions. I am also greatly interested in biology
and plan on someday becoming a doctor and being a part of the World Health
Organization. If you have any doubts or concerns, or would simply like to introduce
yourself, please do not hesitate to contact me at Good luck with your preparations and
see you soon!


Hello delegates! My name is Isabela Sartori, I am currently a
senior at The British School of Rio de Janeiro-Barra Site,
and the vice-chair for the Security Council this year. In my
MUN career, I have almost exclusively taken part in the
UNSC, as it is definitely the committee that most sparks my
interest. Aside from MUN, one of my main interests, and
probably a common trait with many delegates in this
conference, is an avid passion for history and languages. If
you have any questions, please contact me at I hope you enjoy the conference, and I
wish you the best of luck!


Historical Background & Scope of the Committee
The Security Council is one of the principal organs of the United Nations. Its primary
function is the maintenance of international peace and security by means of actions
approved through diplomatic negotiations between member nations and
implemented through the resolutions of the Council. The Security Council
investigates international issues, discusses the gravity of such matters and strives to
reach a solution to those conflicts through diplomatic pressure, imposition of
sanctions, authorization of military force, and assignment of peacekeeping forces
and mediators. Charged with upholding “international peace and security”
according to the UN Charter, the UNSC is composed of 5 permanent members who
may choose to exercise veto power and 10 rotating members, elected by the
General Assembly for two-year terms. Its role is of paramount importance for the
neutralization of looming threats of violence and terror as to sustain peace in the

This year, the delegates will be taking two intricate issues neither of which
has been brought to a satisfying conclusion. The answers that will be given, the
decisions that will be reached and the compromises that will be made (if any) will
set a strong and important precedent for the years to come after this meeting.


A common misconception is that the P5 members ought to use their vetoes
liberally and at the slightest threat to their national interest. This should not be the
case. The veto should serve as a last resort, and other methods of diplomacy (i.e.
negotiations, submission of Amendments, or simply abstaining from the vote)
should be considered first. Veto votes should only be cast if that specific part of the
Resolution is clearly against the interests of the P5 member and other attempts to
remove or modify it have been unsuccessful.
Additionally, the UNSC has the exclusive option to use the words
‘Condemns’ and ‘Demands’ in addition to all other operative phrases in the
Operative Clauses of its Resolutions.
The stances of the P5 members on major issues brought to the UNSC’s
attention are generally well-known. Significant deviation from these stances without
appropriate justification is not encouraged.
Finally, a P5 member abstaining from a vote on a Resolution does not count
as a veto. The veto power is used only in substantive votes on a draft resolution,
and cannot be used to “veto” procedural matters or amendments.

Question of addressing the situation in Burundi

Topic Description

Located in the African Great Lakes Region, the Republic of Burundi has
faced instability since the period prior to its formation as an independent state.
Since then, tensions between the two largest ethnic groups in the country, Tutsis
and Hutus, has been the main cause of turmoil. The period following Burundian
independence was marked by various coups d'état and sudden changes of
government representatives. With regional and international assistance, the
country was able to reestablish itself as a state and established a new constitution,
which would guarantee greater representation for the Hutus, until then neglected
by the political system. To mark the conclusion of the pacification process in the
country, Pierre Nkurunziza, a Hutu candidate, was indirectly elected for the
Burundian presidency. Nkurunziza was reelected in 2010 and, in 2015, announced

plans to run for a third term in office, in apparent violation of the 2000 Arusha
peace agreement which ended Burundi’s civil war. Nkurunziza’s announcement
was soon followed by a failed coup attempt and weeks of widespread protests
which left over 100 dead after violent crackdowns by government forces. Since the
attempted coup, Nkurunziza’s administration has been accused of engaging in
widespread extrajudicial arrests, torture, and killing of both members of the
opposition and suspected supporters of the opposition. As a result, the number of
Burundian refugees fleeing their homes for shelter in neighboring Democratic
Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Uganda, and Tanzania has dramatically increased.
Apart from the apparent concerns for the deteriorating conditions of human rights
and rule of law within Burundi, these developments have serious negative
implications for the already fragile stability of the region. The Security Council now
faces a difficult challenge: while it must be diligent so as not to allow Burundi to
become, as many fear, the ‘next Rwanda’, it must also be wary of the precedent it
sets with respect to the use of force and national sovereignty. Although a complex
dilemma, it is one that must be solved, for the sake of Burundi, its people, and the
stability of the region.

Background Information


In the fourteenth century, in search for greater territorial stability, groups of
Hutus initiated a settlement process in the central region of the African continent.
These were followed by ethnic Tutsi settlements in the same region. The rivalry
between the two ethnic groups dates back to this point in history; anyhow, it will
be this society, in its initial stage of ethnic diversity, that will form the Burundian
Prior to the partitioning of the African continent at the Berlin Conference
and the period of European colonization, the Great Lakes region displayed its own
unique political and economic structure. Regional political organization came
about through governments ruled by authoritarian monarchs, with their power
originating from political alliances within their originating dynasties.
The nineteenth century, however, was defined by extended reigns, a result
of the centralization and stabilization of political power in the region. When an

economic crisis directly hit Europe in the second half of the nineteenth century,
the search by these countries for regional spheres of influence was intensified. It
was then at the Berlin Conference that the African continent was divided amongst
the European powers, and from 1890 onwards a series of mass migrations of
European settlers to the African continent began.
At the time of the Conference, the territory where
Burundi is located today was given to Germany.
The arrival of the Germans was supported by the
Burundian mwami (title given to the ruler in the
region), Mwezi UU Gisabo, of Tutsi ethnicity.
Gisaboo consented to the occupation under the
condition that the maintenance of his
government and his successors be ensured. In
addition, the Tutsi minority gained the status of
privileged elite, with exclusive access to
education, participation in the armed forces, and
in colonial administrative posts. German
domination over Burundian territory did not last for long, a direct result of German
defeat in the First World War, which led to Germany’s loss of all its African
colonies. Thus, in 1924, the region, known at the time as Rwanda-Urundi, was
transferred to Belgium through a mandate from the League of Nations. One year
posterior to its creation (in 1946), the United Nations officially recognized Rwanda-
Urundi as a Belgian possession and granted it tutelage over the region, on the
condition that it lead the region to independence.
Having Rwanda-Urundi under its control, Belgium exploited the
socioeconomic disparities existent between the territory’s ethnic groups to grow
in strength as a metropolis. In this context, the Belgian administration selected the
Tutsis to serve as a political foundation, as since the formation of Burundi they had
composed the elitist and predominantly influential ethnic group within the
government; thus, the Belgians used them as a bridge of communication and
domination over the Hutus, obtaining advantages as a result. As such, European
colonization of the region has, through the granting of privileges to the dominant
ethnic group, led to dramatic increases in both already-existing social inequalities
and tensions between the major ethnic groups, disparities that remain until today
and reflect in the current conflict situation in Burundi.
As a result of the 1929 Great Depression and World War II, African colonies
were largely neglected by their metropolis. Within this context, they began to

obtain a certain degree of autonomy, which ultimately led to the growing number
of moves for African independence and, later, to the start of the process of
withdrawal of the colonizing powers from the African continent through
negotiations or struggles for national liberation, often leading to the return of local
power to African leaders. In accordance with the overall context of the region,
after years of neglect of Rwanda-Urundi, Belgium initiates the process of
preparing its colony for independence, enabling the creation of local bodies,
organizing indirect elections for the legislature, among other measures.
Rwanda and Burundi, in spite of similar origins, achieved their
independence in significantly different manners. In Rwanda, the Belgians replaced
local governments with those loyal to the metropolis and modified the form of
government, whereas in Urundi, government leaders were not questioned. For
this reason, in combination with multiple other peculiar characteristics, the Belgian
colonies displayed such contrasting
independences. In 1961, Rwanda led a
more revolutionary independence process
compared to Urundi, culminating in a
popular coup, in its separation from Urundi,
and its self-declaration as Republic.
Burundi, on the other hand, had its independence process controlled by the
metropolis and organized by the UN. Anyhow, even though a more peaceful
independence process overall, a growing popular uneasiness could be perceived,
a result, in most part, of the maintenance of the constitutional monarchy under
Tutsi political dominance. The intensification of tensions in countries such as
Rwanda and Burundi, with strong inequalities among local ethnic groups decades
after their consolidation as independent states, thus culminated in civil conflict, a
direct consequence of the region’s complex colonization process.


The period leading up to the civil war in Burundi (1993-2005) was marked
by extreme political instability, with several coups d'état in a short periods of time.
Due to popular revolts and cases of disproportionate human rights violations
between the two ethnic groups, no ruler was able to consolidate themselves in
power. Posterior to the official political independence from Belgium and the
assassination of the Tutsi prime minister, Rwagasore, mwami Mwambutsa sought
to balance ethnic proportions within the government so that the Hutus felt more

represented. In addition, the king reinforced his intention to reduce ethnic
disparities in politics by appointing a Hutu prime minister in 1965, who was
assassinated three days after his inauguration by a Tutsi refugee. This action led to
major uprising in the Burundian Hutu population, forcing the mwami to postpone
the elections in an attempt to reduce tensions within the country, which ultimately
led to the opposite popular reaction.
The 1965 elections were held, and a majority of Hutu candidates were
elected to parliamentary office. In the same year, Mwambutsa had chosen a Tutsi
prime minister, increasing tensions in both the legislature and the streets.
Consequently, intervention by the Armed Forces—under the rule of Captain
Micombero—became necessary to carry out the repression of revolts organized by
Hutus. With the internal situation deteriorating, mwami Mwambutsa found himself
unable to rule, fleeing to Zaire. However, seeking to ensure that the constitutional
monarchy be maintained in Burundi, Mwambutsa sends his son Charles Ndizeye
to take his place.
A complicated period ensued soon after, with the rapid transition of power
between multiple rulers. In 1966, after Ndizeye revoked the Constitution,
overthrew his father from power and declared himself king of Burundi, Captain
Micombero, who at the time had been appointed as prime minister, organized a
coup through which he managed to implement a Republic in the country, calling
himself president, prime minister, minister of defense and leader of UPRONA
(Union pour Le Progrès National).
In 1972, Ndizeye was assassinated, and, in 1976, although maintaining
democracy as a political system, a military
coup overthrew Micombero and brought
Colonel Jean-Baptista Bagaza to power.
Bagaza ran for the 1982 elections as the
only candidate, with more liberal proposals
for Burundi, and is elected with a
percentage close to 100% of the vote. His
government is marked by violations of human rights and failure to honor his
campaign promises.
Government violence against the Hutus led to another coup in 1987 by
Major Buyoya, causing power to be transferred to the hands of a more pro-Hutu
leader. However, under the influence of Western nations such as Belgium and
France, the President found himself forced to enact new laws that benefited Tutsis
in the 1993 elections. Still, a Hutu candidate, a militant of a more radical social

movement known as Parti pour The Libération du Peuple Hutu (PALIPEHUTU), was
elected to the post of president, being the first Hutu representative in the history
of Burundi. His name was Melchior Ndadaye of the Front pour la Démocratie au
Burundi party (FRODEBU), and his government program was committed to
reducing ethnic-social differences in the country. In that year, the Hutus also
managed to elect a majority in the Burundian Congress. However, in 1993, the
new Hutu President and other members of the FRODEBU party were assassinated
by Tutsi-led Armed Forces officers at the presidential palace in Bujumbura, the
capital of the country.
A vacuum in power was left in the country, and ethnic conflicts deteriorated
over time, until, in 1994, the coalition government was formed, with Cyprien
Ntaryamina of FRODEBU nominated for the post of president, and a name from
UPRONA to the position of Prime Minister, as a way of maintaining the democratic
regime and ensuring peace. Because of the ethnic groups’ efforts to obtain arms,
attempts to do so were futile, further destabilizing the already weakened state. In
the face renewed instability in the country, Major Buyoya managed to return to
power by means of a new coup d'etat, titling himself as president of a transitional
government in July 1996. Such an act was
condemned by the Organization of African
Unity (OAU), which adopted sanctions against
the Burundian state—the first time such a
measure had been adopted—and by the
United Nations. Both international
organizations reprimanded the use of force in
the process. On the other hand, Buyoya received US support in the form of
financial aid from the United States Agency for International Development, which
aided in the non-contestation of the coup in the majority international system.
In the following year (1996), a meeting was held in Arusha between leaders
of neighboring countries to discuss and search for a regional solution to the ethnic
conflict that continued to unfold in the region. The goal of the conference was to
allow for dialogue between the parties to the conflict and, thus, initiate a process
of pacification. The agreement was finally signed in 2000 between parties in the
Burundian government, UPRONA and FRODEBU, containing as basic
requirements: (1) "ethnic balance", both in political organization, covering the
three branches of government and in the military; (2) establishment as the
maximum limit of two consecutive presidential orders; and (3) the division of

power in the government between Buyoya, who served as president until the first
half of 2003, and Domitien Ndayyizeye from 2003 to the elections in 2005.
Months before the elections, a popular plebiscite was held for the
instauration of representative presidentialism as a form of government and a
model Constitution to be adopted after years of civil war and repeated coups in
Burundi. With this decision, in June 2005, the Legislature was elected through
popular vote, while the Executive branch of government was selected through
indirect elections. From these, Pierre Nkurunziza was elected as president,
concluding the process of formation of a definitive Burundian government with a
Hutu majority. The new president was able to continue the process of pacification
in Burundian territory, finalized in 2008 through ceasefire agreements with the
remaining rebel groups. Even after the official end of the conflict in 2005, cases of
violence between Tutsi and Hutu remained a reality. In 1993, with Burundi no
longer in civil war, the first direct election was held in the country. In these
elections, Pierre Nkurunziza was reelected by popular vote. The situation in the
region remained relatively stable over the subsequent years despite possible
conflicts sporadically emerging between the two ethnic groups. The context,
however, deteriorated once again after the 2015 elections, with many wondering
about the legitimacy of Nkurunziza's re-election.


On April 25, 2015, President Pierre Nkurunziza announced that he would
seek a third presidential term. The announcement was followed by the eruption of
protests in the capital Bujumbura, which occurred most expressively in the regions
of Nyakabiga, Musaga, Mutakura, Cybitoke, Jane, and Ngagara. The government
responded to these movements with violent police repression, which
coincidentally or not, were most incisively carried
out in neighborhoods where the majority of the
population is of Tutsi ethnicity.
The controversy over Nkurunziza's third
candidacy revolves around a dispute over the
legality of the act. Burundi’s constitution states
that the presidential term is five years and can be
renewed only once. The announcement of President Nkurunziza's candidacy also
breaks with the Arusha peace agreement signed in the year 2000, which stipulates
no more than two consecutive terms. In this way, the opposition and part of civil

society defend the interpretation that the president, after his second term, cannot
be re-elected. Government supporters, in turn, argued that, since Nkurunziza was
indirectly elected for his first term (2005), he would have the right to stand for re-
election in this case.
Since the president's candidacy, the situation in the country has steadily
deteriorated over the course of 2015. With the favorable opinion of the
Constitutional Court on the third term, thousands of demonstrators took to the
streets. Reports of intimidation and threats from Court judges, as well as the
escape of the Vice-President to Rwanda prior to the
decision, only further inflamed the opposition. On
May 13, Army General Godefroid Niyombare, taking
advantage of the president's absence at the East
African Community Summit in Tanzania, shakes
Bujumbura with an attempted coup. This attempt
was repressed the following evening, when the
president reestablished control over the
government. In spite of this, the popular mobilization against Nkurunziza's
candidacy did not diminish, only intensifying the confrontation between the
government and the so-called "Halte au troi sième mandat" (Stop the third term).
The coup attempt was also countered by waves of government repression.
The assassination, on 23 May, of Zedi Feruzi, leader of the Union for Peace and
Development (UPD - Zigamibanga party) opposition, highlights this new phase of
repression. Death meant not only an unwillingness of the government to promote
dialogue with the opposition, but also the suspension of the dialogue that had
been established by the UN shortly before. In addition, it resulted in the boycott of
the elections scheduled for May 26, of which the opposition announced it would
no longer participate. With the escalation of events and with the realization that
conditions in May were not suitable for elections, the international community
advocated for the postponement of the process, with major countries threatening
to withdraw financial support from Burundi.
Concerns have also emerged with regard to censorship since the start of
the conflict. According to Amnesty International, independent media were
decimated between May and April of 2016. Independent national radio stations
broadcasting news have also been extinguished, and since this is the main means
through which Burundians obtain information, the majority of the population
remains deprived of information. Only the radio station REMA, a pro-government
station, is authorized to operate, while broadcasters such as the African Public

Radio and Bonesha FM were banned, claiming they were under investigation for
their connection to the May 13 coup. Journalists who refuse to align themselves
with forces loyal to the president have faced not only censorship, but also
intimidation and physical violence. Furthermore, human rights communities have
faced orders to suspend operations and have had members be victims to physical
violence and threats, forcing most of the activists have had to flee the country.
On June 10, after months of protests, and despite the African Union's call
for a longer term, the Electoral Commission announced the postponement of the
presidential elections until July 15. Meanwhile,
the repressive response of the police to the
popular demonstrations suppressed the dissent
of protests, attempting to assert that the crisis had
been borught to an end. Nevertheless, Vice-
President Gervais Rufyikiri’s escape from the
country demonstrated how instability clearly remained present.
Although the situation did not improve, the presidential elections took
place in July and President Nkurunziza defeated Zedi Feruzi, the opposition
leader, with 70% of the votes. However, in spite of the victory in this controversial
election, the government continued with its hard-line strategy toward human
rights activists, from the opposition and the press, to eliminate any divergent
voices in the country. Because of all the harassment and intimidation by the
government, Great Britain, the United States, and the African Union condemned
the electoral process and deemed it not credible, further diminishing the
legitimacy of Nkurunziza's third term. Since the elections, the crisis has only
become more acute, with hundreds of oppositionists currently in exile in Rwanda,
Kenya or even Belgium, in addition to the 240,000 now living as refugees in
neighboring countries.
On August 20, 2015, Pierre Nkurunziza took office six days ahead of
schedule. The move came after the leaders of the CNARED (National Council for
the Arusha Agreement) opposition group gave him until August 26 to step down,
sending the message that the government had no intension in continuing to
discuss its legitimacy. In addition, during his inaugural speech, Nkurunziza
announced changes to article 129 of the Constitution, which sought to lower the
threshold of 5% of votes required for a party to be included in the government,
which would allow the National Unity Government to be more inclusive. However,
this same article establishes ethnic and gender quotas and this change could
allow the government to make changes in this respect.

The message conveyed was that there was nothing else the opposition
could do. As a result, opponents have been trying to unite politically on the one
hand and the armed struggle on the other, in addition to causing strikes at the top
tiers of the Burundian regime. In the words of Thierry Vircoulon of the International
Crisis Group, "the re-election of Nkurunziza put Burundi on the road to war." The
change in the pattern of violence that went from street demonstrations to murders
signaled what was yet to come. In this sense, the withdrawal of foreign investment
has increasingly challenged the provision of basic services to citizens, which could
lead to even greater criticism and discontent.
At the beginning of December, a new attack was registered in Bujumbura,
but this time the target was military bases, a new element in the civil conflict that
had now established itself in the country. The episode proved to be the most
violent since the start of the insurgency movements against the Nkurunziza
government and demonstrates a change of tactics by the opposition groups. At
least 87 people were killed in the December 11 attacks.
The escalation of violence in the country has drawn attention from the
international community as a whole. On the day of the attack, the US State
Department spokesman demanded neighboring countries to focus their efforts in
promoting negotiations with insurgent groups in Burundi. The United Nations
Children's Fund (UNICEF) has also made
statements about the situation in the country,
warning about the high levels of migratory
movements of refugees to other countries—an
estimated 220,000 people have fled. There is
widespread fear that the current situation will
bring Burundi back into a scenario of political,
social, and economic instability. Statements by the African Union are extremely
similar, stressing that the prevailing situation in Burundi would have the potential
to seriously undermine the gains made through the Arusha Agreement, with
devastating consequences for the country and for the region as a whole.
On that note, in January 2016, the head of the UN Human Rights office
spoke about the new trends in violent acts that have become commonplace in the
Burundian conflict, including rape, kidnappings, and torture. This new modus
operandi began to be recorded by agents of the UN High Commissioner for
Human Rights since the December attacks. Thirteen cases of sexual violence
against women were documented in search and seizure operations in opposition-
majority neighborhoods that occurred after the December attacks. According to

information gathered from residents' reports from various neighborhoods, some
of these victims of rape and torture were targeted because they were Tutsi. Thus,
there is a growing concern about the incorporation of the ethnic element in the
ongoing conflict in the country.
Likewise, in a report published in April, Amnesty International sought to
express its concern with not only the direct repression of insurgent groups, but
also with the fact human rights
organizations in the country have been
closed or their bank accounts frozen by the
government, ceasing their activities within
the country.
Meanwhile, at the end of April
another wave of protests broke out in the
capital and spread to other regions of the country. The government reacted by
violently reprehending those involved, many times through the use of lethal force.
In response, the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) announced
on April 25 that a preliminary investigation had been opened to substantiate the
need for a full investigation. In addition to the use of violence, Burundi has also
been experiencing an economic crisis due to the state of paralysis the Burundian
State has been in since the beginning of the conflict. With Nkurunziza's decision to
run for a third term and the entire situation that followed, Burundi's growth rates
fell by 7.5% in 2015 and with that, the country reached the position of the third
poorest in the world, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Moreover, the escalation of tensions between the insurgent groups and the
government and the lack of perspective for a solution have led the European
Union to suspend its financial aid to the country for the duration of the conflict,
further contributing to the deterioration of the country’s economic situation. In
2014 alone, the European Union had sent approximately 61 million euros to
Burundi to support development projects in the territory, out of which 15.5 million
were sent directly to the Burundian government. According to the report adopted
at a meeting of the European Council, the government's efforts to curb the wave
of violence that has plagued the country have proved insufficient for European
In sum, as stated in the UNSC’s February 2017 monthly forecast for Burundi:
The security and political situation in Burundi, which deteriorated sharply
after April 2015 when Burundian President Pierre Nkurunziza announced
that he would run for a controversial third term, remains dire. While the

number of casualties has declined and the security situation has improved,
serious human rights abuses continue to be committed daily with impunity,
mainly by the government and the Imbonerakure, the youth group of the
Nkurunziza’s party. The overall level of oppression and state control over
Burundian society has increased, manifested by arbitrary deprivations of
life, enforced disappearances, cases of torture and arbitrary detention on a
massive scale. Furthermore, these actions are taking place in an
environment where freedoms of expression, association and assembly are
virtually non-existent. An estimated 325,000 people have fled the country
since the beginning of the crisis.

Past UN Actions

To date, the UN has adopted relatively few resolutions in response to
Burundi’s crisis, but two documents bear mention insofar as they reflect the level
of response from the UN thus far.

United Nations Security Council Resolution 2248 (November, 2015)

This resolution recognizes and condemns the increase in human rights
abuses in Burundi, including torture, extrajudicial killings, and harassment of
independent observers, urges the Burundian government to end such abuses and
prosecute those members of the police and intelligence services responsible for
them, and calls for continued dialogue, but makes no move to intervene in the
crisis or supplement the humanitarian resources of Burundi’s neighbors in
response to the growing refugee crisis.

United Nations Security Council Resolution 2279 (April 2016)

This resolution acknowledges the continued deterioration of the Burundian
crisis, thanks Human Rights Watch and other groups for their continued
monitoring of the situation, issues the same calls for cessation of human rights
abuses, and requests that the UN Secretary General authorize the deployment of a
UN police contribution to assist with monitoring the situation on the ground [to
date, this contribution has not been deployed].

As the above resolutions indicate, despite the ongoing political violence in
Burundi, the UN Security Council and General Assembly have maintained a
passive role, confining their resolutions to calling for an end to human rights
abuses and political reconciliation. This has been, in part, due to Chinese and
Russian opposition to concrete action or statements that explicitly call for
President Nkurunziza to end his pursuit of a third term. In fact, the most concrete
efforts to seek a resolution to the conflict have been led by the East African
Community, which, with the support of the African Union, has initiated a mediation
effort led by Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni to attempt to broker a
negotiated end to President Nkurunziza’s crackdown.

Positions of Major Nations and Blocs


Has endorsed efforts by the EAC to negotiate an end to the human rights
abuses and constitutional crisis in Burundi. Like the EAC and UN, the AU
condemns the use of torture and extrajudicial arrests and killings as means of
obtaining political objectives, but is hesitant to intervene in the affairs of sovereign


Wishes to see a peaceful resolution to the current crisis, and has
commissioned Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni to convene mediation efforts
to reconcile the ongoing conflict between President Nkurunziza and his
opponents. The EAC condemns the human rights abuses by the Nkurunziza
administration, but is attempting to remain neutral on the constitutional challenge
presented by his attempt to seek a third term in order to better act as an impartial
mediating party.


Most of the Balkan states recognize Kosovo’s independence from Serbia,
with the exception of Greece and Romania, with Bosnia and Herzegovina having

presented a mixed reaction although being generally in favor (with the exception
of the Serbs in its government).
Greece, in spite of not having recognized Kosovo’s independence, has
supported Kosovo’s integration into various international and intergovernmental
organizations, while Romania partook in NATO’s peacekeeping missions in


As the principle source of funding for stability and economic development
in the country, the European Union and its 28 member countries are highly
concerned with the situation there. The EU makes its financial support conditional
on commitment to the reform process, and stresses targeted action to deal with
the most disruptive and dangerous leaders, but it also is limited by its parallel
commitment to humanitarian assistance to the people of the country.


While China did not oppose the UNSC resolutions condemning the
extrajudicial actions of President Nkurunziza’s administration, Beijing is reluctant to
be seen as criticizing what it perceives as domestic conflicts within sovereign
states. It opposes intervention in domestic political disputes as a matter of
principle, and regards international peacekeeping and human rights monitoring
with suspicion. For these reasons, it has opposed further UN action and, with
Russia, has voted against letters of condemnation drafted by France’s delegation
to the UNSC.


Like China, Russia opposes most instances of UN intervention in matters
that it considers to be domestic political disputes, even in the case of human rights
abuses by the sitting administration. When asked why Russia opposed an explicit
condemnation of President Nkurunziza’s use of force against Burundian civilians,
Russia’s ambassador to the UN, Vitaly Chukin said, “it's not the business of the
Security Council and the U.N. Charter to get involved in constitutional matters of
sovereign states.”


American responses to the crises have been mixed. It has attempted to take
a hard line against the Nkurunziza administration’s human rights abuses by
threatening to withhold aid to Burundi until the abuses cease and the President
abandons his pursuit of a third term, but has also asserted that the President must
be a part of any brokered end to violence and has supported the EAC efforts to
mediate an end to violence. It supported the French letter of condemnation that
Russia and China opposed, but has not sponsored resolutions calling for
interventions in the conflict. This may be due to Washington’s attentions being
focused elsewhere, or out of resignation to continued Russian and Chinese
opposition to more intrusive measures by the UN.

Timeline of Events
pre-1300s - Hutu people settle in the region.

1400s - Tutsi settlers arrive.

1500s - Distinct Burundian kingdom emerges.

1858 - British explorers Richard Burton and John Speke visit Burundi.

1890 - The kingdoms of Urundi and neighbouring Ruanda (Rwanda) incorporated into
German East Africa.

1916 - Belgian army occupies the area.

1923 - Belgium receives League of Nations mandate to administer Ruanda-Urundi.

1959 - Influx of Tutsi refugees from Rwanda following ethnic violence there.

1959-1961 - Independence drive led by cross-communal UPRONA party of Prince Louis
Rwagasore, which wins 1961 legislative elections. Prince Louis becomes prime minister
but is assassinated shortly afterwards.


1962 - Urundi is separated from Ruanda-Urundi and becomes independent kingdom of
Burundi under King Mwambutsa IV.

1963 - Thousands of Hutus flee to Rwanda following ethnic violence.

1965 - King Mwambutsa refuses to appoint a Hutu prime minister after Hutus win a
majority in parliamentary elections; attempted coup put down by army chief Michel

1966 July - Mwambutsa deposed by his son, Ntare V.

1966 November - Michel Micombero ousts king, declares himself president.


1972 - About 120,000 Hutus are massacred by government forces and their supporters in
the wake of a Hutu-led uprising in the south.

1976 - President Micombero is deposed in a military coup by Jean-Baptiste Bagaza.

1981 - A new constitution makes Burundi a one-party state under UPRONA.

1987 - President Bagaza is deposed in a coup led by Pierre Buyoya.

1988 - Thousands of Hutus are massacred by Tutsis and thousands more flee to Rwanda.


1992 - New constitution providing for a multiparty system is adopted in a referendum.

1993 June - Melchior Ndadaye's Frodebu wins multi-party polls, ending military rule and
leading to the installation of a pro-Hutu government.

1993 October - Tutsi soldiers assassinate President Ndadaye. In revenge, some Frodebu
members massacre Tutsis and the army begins reprisals. Burundi is plunged into an
ethnic conflict which claims some 300,000 lives.

1994 January - Parliament appoints Cyprien Ntaryamira - a Hutu - as president.

1994 April - Plane carrying Ntaryamira and his Rwandan counterpart is shot down over
the Rwandan capital Kigali, killing both and triggering genocide in Rwanda in which
800,000 are killed.

1994 October - Parliament speaker Sylvestre Ntibantunganya appointed president.

1995 - Massacre of Hutu refugees leads to renewed ethnic violence in the capital,


1996 - Ex-president Buyoya seizes power.

1998 - Buyoya and parliament agree on a transitional constitution under which Buyoya is
formally sworn in as president.

2000 - Government and three Tutsi groups sign a ceasefire accord, but two main Hutu
groups refuse to join in.


2001 October - Talks brokered by South African President Nelson Mandela lead to
installation of transitional government, but main Hutu rebel groups refuse to sign and
fighting intensifies.

2002 January - Jean Minani, leader of main Hutu party Frodebu, elected president of
transitional national assembly set up to bridge ethnic divide.

2003 April - Domitien Ndayizeye - a Hutu - succeeds Pierre Buyoya as president, under
terms of three-year, power-sharing transitional government inaugurated in 2001.

2003 July - Major rebel assault on Bujumbura. Some 300 rebels and 15 government
soldiers are killed. Thousands flee their homes.

2003 November - President Ndayizeye and Hutu rebel group Forces for Defense of
Democracy (FDD) leader Pierre Nkurunziza sign agreement to end civil war at summit of
African leaders in Tanzania. Smaller Hutu rebel group, Forces for National Liberation
(FNL), remains active.

2004 - UN force takes over peacekeeping duties from African Union troops.

2005 January - President signs law to set up new national army, incorporating
government forces and all but one Hutu rebel group, the FNL.

2005 March - Voters back power-sharing constitution.


2005 August - Pierre Nkurunziza, from the Hutu FDD group, is elected as president by the
two houses of parliament. The FDD won parliamentary elections in June.

2006 April - A curfew, imposed during the violence of 1972, is lifted.

2006 September - The last major rebel group, the Forces for National Liberation (FNL),
and the government sign a ceasefire at talks in Tanzania.

2007 February - UN shuts down its peacekeeping mission and refocuses its operations on
helping with reconstruction.

2007 April – DR Congo, Rwanda and Burundi relaunch the regional economic bloc - Great
Lakes Countries Economic Community - known under its French acronym CEPGL.

2007 September - Rival FNL factions clash in Bujumbura, killing 20 fighters and sending
residents fleeing. Rebel raids are also reported in the north-west of the country.

2007 December - Burundian soldiers join African Union peacekeepers in Somalia.

2008 April - Former head of governing party, Hussein Radjabu, is sentenced to 13 years
in prison for undermining state security. Radjabu was accused of plotting armed rebellion
and insulting President Nkurunziza.

2008 April-May - Renewed fighting between government forces and FNL rebels leaves at
least 100 people dead.


2008 May - Government and FNL rebels sign ceasefire. FNL leader Agathon Rwasa
returns home from exile in Tanzania.

2009 March - The Paris Club of creditor nations cancels all of the $134.3m debt Burundi
owed to its members.

2009 April - Ex-rebel Godefroid Niyombare becomes first ever Hutu chief of general staff
of the army.

FNL lays down arms and officially becomes a political party in a ceremony supervised by
the African Union.


2010 June - Presidential election. Nkurunziza re-elected in uncontested poll after main
opposition parties boycott the vote and parliamentary polls. They say earlier district
elections were rigged, and form a new civil opposition Alliance of Democrats for Change
(ADC-Ikibiri). FNL leader Agathon Rwasa goes into hiding.

2011 November - Rights group says more than 300 people killed in past five months,
including opposition party members or members of former rebel FNL; accuse the
government of restricting media and political freedom.

2013 June - President Nkurunziza approves new media law which critics condemn as an
attack on press freedom. Law forbids reporting on matters that could undermine national
security, public order or the economy.

2013 August - The leader of the former rebel FML, Agathon Rwasa, resurfaces after three
years in hiding and says he will stand in the 2015 presidential election.

2014 January - Burundi deploys a battalion of troops to Central African Republic, as part
of an international effort to prevent a descent into civil war there.

2014 March - Parliament blocks a government attempt to introduce changes to the
constitution seen as threatening the balance of power between the country's main ethnic

2014 April - Burundi orders a senior UN official to leave the country after a UN report
warns that the government is arming its young supporters ahead of next year's elections,
a claim which the government denies.

2014 October - Burundian opposition leader Leonce Ngendakumana is sentenced to a
year in prison for slander, in what he describes as a political trial ahead of next year's
presidential election.


2015 May - Constitutional Court rules in favor of President Nkurunziza's decision to stand
for a third term, amid reports of judges being intimidated. Protestors take to the streets
and tens of thousands flee the violence. An army officer's coup attempt fails.

2015 June - Electoral commission announces presidential elections will be postponed
until July and and parliamentary polls until the end of June, following month of protests.
Vice-President Gervais Rufyikiri leaves country after opposing President Nkurunziza's
plans for a third term.

2015 July - President Nkurunziza wins a third term in the presidential election with 70% of
the vote. Opposition leader Agathon Rwasa describes the polls as a "joke".

2016 January - President Nkurunziza threatens to counter the deployment of external
peacekeepers after the African Union announces plans to send in 5,000 troops to protect
civilians from escalating violence between government and rebel forces.

2016 March - With the political situation showing little sign of improvement, the EU
announces that it is suspending direct financial aid to the Burundian government.

2016 May - UN report accuses neighboring Rwanda of supporting Burundian rebels.
Rwandan President Paul Kagame denies the allegations.

According to the UN, more than 400 people have been killed and 260,000 have fled the
country in the year since the violence broke out over Mr. Nkurunziza's plan to run for a
third term.

2016 October - President Nkurunziza signs into law a bill which will see the country
withdraw from the International Criminal Court.

2016 August - Burundi rejects deployment of UN police to end more than a year of
political violence, saying the plan violated its sovereignty.

*The timeline above contains extracts from

Definition of Key Terms

While many informal attempts to end the conflict were carried out both
inside and outside of Burundi, it was not until 28 August 2000 that the major
parties to the conflict signed the Arusha Peace and Reconciliation Agreement for
Burundi. Subsequent ceasefire agreements were reached, following the Arusha
Peace Agreement, which saw an end to the initial violence in 2005. The Arusha
Peace Agreement contains five important protocols addressing the root causes of
the conflict and ways to implement sustainable peace through democratic
elections and political institutions. The agreement includes a power-sharing
element which stipulates a five-year term of office for the president and a two-term
limit for reelection.


Atrocity crimes are considered to be the most serious crimes against
humankind. Their status as international crimes is based on the belief that the acts
associated with them affect the core dignity of human beings, in particular the
persons that should be most protected by States, both in times of peace and in
times of war. The term “atrocity crimes” refers to three legally defined international
crimes: genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes, and ethnic cleansing,
which is a part of crimes against humanity and/or genocide.
Atrocity crimes tend to occur in countries with some level of instability or
crisis. Consequently, measures taken to prevent these crimes are likely to
contribute to national peace and stability. Prevention also serves the larger
agenda of regional and international peace and stability. Atrocity crimes and their
consequences can spill over into neighboring countries by, for example, creating
or reinforcing tensions between groups that are defined along religious or ethnic
lines rather than by national borders. The obligation to prevent and punish atrocity
crimes has become a norm of customary international law, which means that it is
mandatory for all states, regardless of whether they have ratified the conventions.
The principle of the Responsibility to Protect, which reaffirms the primary
responsibility of the State to protect its population from atrocity crimes, is founded
on all these legal obligations and interpretations.


Genocide, according to international law, is a crime committed against
members of a national, ethnical, racial or religious group. Even though the victims
of the crimes are individuals, they are targeted because of their membership, real
or perceived, in one of these groups. It is important to note that genocides can
happen in or outside of armed conflict.
Article II in the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime
of Genocide defines the term “genocide” as:

Acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical,
racial or religious group, including:

a. Killing members of the group;

b. Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;

c. Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to
bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;

d. Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;

e. Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.


Crimes against humanity encompass acts that are part of a widespread or
systematic attack directed against any civilian population. Even though non-
civilians might also become victims of the attack, the ultimate target must be the
civilian population for it to be considered a crime against humanity.
The Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court defines crimes against
humanity in Article 7 as follows:

For the purpose of this Statute, “crime against humanity” means any of the
following acts when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack
directed against any civilian population, with knowledge of the attack:

a. Murder;

b. Extermination;

c. Enslavement;

d. Deportation or forcible transfer of population;

e. Imprisonment or other severe deprivation of physical liberty in violation
of fundamental rules of international law;

f. Torture;

g. Rape, sexual slavery, enforced prostitution, forced pregnancy, enforced
sterilization, or any other form of sexual violence of comparable gravity;

h. Persecution against any identifiable group or collectivity on political,
racial, national, ethnic, cultural, religious, gender as defined in
paragraph 3, or other grounds that are universally recognized as
impermissible under international law, in connection with any act
referred to in this paragraph or any crime within the jurisdiction of the

i. Enforced disappearance of persons;

j. The crime of apartheid;

k. Other inhumane acts of a similar character intentionally causing great
suffering, or serious injury to body or to mental or physical health.


On 12 August 1949, the international community adopted four Geneva
Conventions. These and the two Additional Protocols, adopted in 1977, protect
individuals who are not involved in hostilities during times of armed conflict. The
Conventions and Additional Protocols articulate the standard of treatment for
these individuals under international humanitarian law and define a war crime as:
An act committed during an armed conflict that violates international
humanitarian or human rights law.
The range of violations that constitute war crimes is broad and includes,
inter alia, murder or ill-treatment of anyone who is not or no longer taking part in
hostilities, including civilians, prisoners of war, wounded or sick, medical and
religious personnel and staff of relief operations.


Ethnic cleansing is not officially recognized as a distinct crime under
international law, but entails a purposeful policy designed by one ethnic or
religious group to remove, by violent and terror-inspiring means, the civilian
population of another ethnic or religious group from certain geographic areas.

Thus, ethnic cleansing is encompassed in crimes against humanity, and/or
genocide, which includes the forcible transfer or deportation of populations.


The Responsibility to Protect (RtoP) is a new norm, based on existing
international law, to prevent and stop genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and
crimes against humanity.
The Outcome Document on the Responsibility to Protect states that all
member states have a duty to prevent and halt genocide and mass atrocities. This
duty lies first and foremost with the state, but the international community has a
role that cannot be blocked by the invocation of sovereignty. Sovereignty no
longer exclusively protects States from foreign interference; it is a charge of
responsibility where States are accountable for the welfare of their people. This
principle is enshrined in Article 1 of the Genocide Convention and embodied in
the principle of “sovereignty as responsibility” and in the concept of the
Responsibility to Protect.


After the implementation of the Responsibility to Protect by the UN in
January 2009, the UN Secretary General released a report outlining the three
pillars of the principle:


Affirms that states bear the primary responsibility for the protection of populations
from genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing.


States the international community has a responsibility to assist and encourage
states in fulfilling their protection obligations.


Declares that if a state fails to protect its population from these crimes or in fact
perpetrates them, the international community must respond in a timely and
decisively manner, using appropriate diplomatic, economic, humanitarian and
other peaceful means to protect populations. If peaceful means are inadequate,

the international community must be prepared to take stronger action, including
collective enforcement measures under Chapter VII of the UN Charter

Guiding Questions
1. What are the root causes of the Burundian crisis? How has the relationship
between Hutus and Tutsis developed over time and reached its current

2. To what what is extent is the crisis in Burundi similar to that in Rwanda a few
years ago? How did the international community act in that situation? What
lessons can we learn from the way in which the international community dealt
with the Rwandan Genocide and how can they be applied to Burundi?

3. What actions have international organizations such as the UN and the AU
taken in order to attempt to solve the ensuing crisis? How effective have
these measures been?

4. What actions has the Burundian government proposed and utilized to
improve the situation and tackle the crisis?

5. To what extent and at what point should foreign actors intervene in the crisis
in order to prevent its escalation and avert casualties?

6. In what ways have neighboring countries and the region as a whole suffered
from the crisis in Burundi? In what ways can they help?

Further Research
• February 2017 UNSC Monthly Forecast for Burundi
• Chronology of Events

• UN Documents for Burundi

CRS Report on the Burundi electoral crisis (2015)

CFR overview of the political crisis in Burundi!/conflict/political-

The Guardian article on international negligence with respect to Burundi

Al Jazeera’s compilation of all their news articles on Burundi

The Telegraph’s compilation of all their news articles on Burundi

BBC country profile for Burundi

Interactive detailed timeline of the Burundi conflict and how it reached crisis point


Question of delineating the role of the UNSC in peacekeeping and state
building in post conflict regions

Topic Description

The end of WWII brought about a wave of change for global geopolitics. The
rise in nationalism, shifting values, and severe European losses meant that most
imperial nations no longer had the strength to maintain their empires. For that
reason, several colonized nations who yearned for self-determination soon declared
their independence. Nevertheless, this transition from colony to sovereign state was
seldom uncomplicated.
In subsequent years, the world saw an emergence of civil wars and protests,
especially in Africa and the Middle East, as previously tribal populations attempted
to adapt into artificial geographic delineations created by the West. This created a

fragile political framework where coups, dictators, and extremist groups
proliferated. Therefore, the creation of the United Nations was meant to aid in
settling disputes and maintaining peaceful relations amongst and within its member
states. However, as each conflict arose, the extremely fine line between
international intervention and invasion of national sovereignty remained a strong
topic for debate.
Since the UN’s inception, UN peace operations have had their scope
expanded from mere monitoring to peace enforcing and state-like functions, yet
many question their success over the years. There is little consensus regarding how
much and in what manner the UN should intervene to help these war-torn regions
maintain peace and reestablish a functioning society. Thus, it is time the Security
Council cease the establishment of new operations and reflect upon their multi-
faceted structures, their successes and failures, and their problems, finally providing
a response to the many long-standing pleas for reform.

Background Information
The precursor to the United Nations was the League of Nations, which was
formed after World War I, which killed 8 million soldiers and 9 million civilians,
completely changing international politics. It was
founded based on President Woodrow Wilson’s 14
points, as a manner by which to ensure peace after
such a deadly war. The problems of the league
were numerous, and many stemmed from the fact
that not only was the United Nations not able to
participate due to domestic politics, but the
countries which could found themselves in fragile
states after the war, and weren’t able to completely devote themselves to the
league as they had their own internal issues.
The league counted with the presence of a Mandates Systems, which was
supposed to be a way to help countries which weren’t capable of self-government
by providing them with an international “caretaker”. Instead, it was actually used as
a way to perpetuate colonialism and imperialism, continuing to give European
Nations a stronghold over weaker and more vulnerable post-colonial nations. This
made the actual league very different from the ideal body in Wilson’s conception,

being instead a way of maintain an imperialistic vision of international relations even
after World War I.
Differently, World War II brought about the creation of the United Nations in
1945, during the San Francisco conference. The United Nations charter was created,
and in it the Security Council was given the right to maintain and restore
international peace and security by land, air, or sea. Even though the council wasn’t
given an army, it does use UN peacekeeping forces and member state forces to
maintain peace in foreign nations.
During the Cold War, where the
world saw two very divided bodies, the
USA and Russia, both backed by the veto
power and engaged in secondary
worldwide conflict, the United Nations
could do little as its form impeded
resolutions from being passed. However, it
was able to monitor the conflicts quite well, and used that to its advantage, even
though it came to have little practical effect during those years.
In the 21st century, the United Nations has been faced with a variety of
conflicts, ranging from border disputes, to regime changes, to Civil Wars. These
have propagated with great strength throughout the world, and with the 2011 Arab
Spring bringing about unrest in the Middle East, the boundaries of the Security
Council are bound to be tested as it is tasked with the job of returning peace to
nations which not only have a lot of historical baggage of their own, but are also
heavily divided inside their own borders.
Therefore, the main aspects of peace operations to be reformed and looked
at carefully should be, firstly, a way of preventing conflicts before they occur.
Secondly, the solution to protect civilians on the ground, as they are constantly
caught in the crossfire between regional, international and terrorist forces. Lastly, in
what manners and when should force be used to intervene in international conflicts,
and to what extent should the UN rely on regional arrangements to make sure
peace and human rights are respected.
This could be done by further state-building in nations, which entails creating
a constitution, carrying out electoral processes, aiming for a national reconciliation
of old combatants who have been fighting regional wars for years, and finding a
legitimate rule of law the country should abide by.

Past UN Resolutions

RESOLUTION 1327 (2000)

In 2000, Resolution 1327 praised the developments presented in the
Brahimi Report. Responding to the report, the resolution was wide-ranging and
provided peacekeeping operations with clear, credible, and achievable mandates,
considering the importance such operations have as reliable deterrents. It also
requested the Secretariat to provide the Council with regular briefings on key
military factors of peace operations, as well as on the humanitarian situation of
countries in which operations are ongoing. Additionally, the UNSC emphasized
the necessity of promoting a system of consultations among troop-contributing
countries in order to give a better understanding on the missions’ mandates.

RESOLUTION 1366 (2001)

The role that peace operations exert on conflict prevention has been
endorsed in many of the Council’s post-Brahimi resolutions. In Resolution 1366
(2001), the UNSC expressed the commitment to employ all appropriate means at
its disposal to prevent armed conflict. This would include the deployment of
missions to areas of potential conflict in order to support the building of national
capacity in the field, especially through the inclusion of a DDR component in the

RESOLUTION 2171 (2014)

In 2014, Resolution 2171 recalled the commitment established in
Resolution 1366 and noted that peacekeeping operations, Special Political
Missions, the Peacebuilding Commission and the regional and sub-regional
arrangements play a vital role in the prevention of the outbreak, escalation,
continuation and recurrence of conflict.


RESOLUTION 2100 (2013)

In regard to the use of force, the UNSC has, as aforementioned, increased
its disposal to use military force in order to tackle the menaces and spoilers that
imposed challenges to UN-led peace processes. The recent developments in the

DR Congo (MONUSCO), South Sudan (UNMISS), Mali (MINUSMA) and Central
African Republic (MINUSCA) confirm the intensification of UN intrusion as a
response to the increasingly hostile environments. The heightened instability in
the eastern DRC due to the activities of armed groups prompted Resolution 2098,
which authorizes MONUSCO to “carry out targeted offensive operations through
the Intervention Brigade” in a “robust manner” in order “to prevent the expansion
of all armed groups,” neutralize and disarm them. In Mali, UN peacekeepers have
been entangled in acts of terrorist groups. Resolution 2100 then authorized
MINUSMA “to stabilize the key population centers” and “to deter threats and take
active steps to prevent the return of armed elements.”


RESOLUTION 1645 (2005)

The efforts to consolidate cohesive and effective peacebuilding architecture
in the UN system amounted in 2005 to the adoption of Resolution 1645, which
puts into force the creation of the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC).

RESOLUTION 2086 (2013)

Resolution 2086 reiterated the Council’s “willingness to make use of the
advisory, advocacy and resource mobilization roles” of the PBC, as well as
endorsed the need for a multidimensional approach to peacekeeping—which must
focus on the host country’s security sector framework, on the promotion of rule of
law institutions, on peace consolidation and inclusive political processes, and on
the protection of civilians.

RESOLUTION 2151 (2014)

The issue of security sector reform (SSR) was given particular attention in
2014 in the first stand-alone document on the matter: Resolution 2151 recognizes
the importance of SSR as a condition for stabilization of countries recovering from
conflict. It stresses that an inclusive national vision on SSR must be taken into
account, once such reform must be a reflection of national ownership. Indeed, the
record is of a growing UN’s support for state institutions and capabilities. Since the
transitional administrations led by the organization in East Timor and Kosovo, its
disposal to extend state authority has increased. In Mali, for instance, the above-

mentioned Resolution 2100 granted MINUSMA a mandate “to extend and re-
establish state administration throughout the country.”

RESOLUTION 2217 (2015)

In the Central African Republic, in an environment deemed to be of
widespread ethnic violence and collapsing government, Resolution 2217 (2015)
authorized peacekeepers to take “urgent temporary measures” (UTMs) on an
exceptional basis in “areas where national security forces or judicial authorities are
not present or operational.”


RESOLUTION 1325 (2000)

In what concerns gender issues, the Council has been proactive in adopting
resolutions that stress the importance of gender equality in peace processes.
Resolution 1325 was a hallmark as it outlined the necessity of women’s full
engagement in all stages of peace consolidation, advocated attention to the
protection of women from gender-based violence, and called for the end of
impunity. Subsequent resolutions (1820, 1888, 1889, 1960, 2106, 2122 and 2242)
all reinforced such demands, with a view towards better integrating gendered
perspectives in the Council’s work.

RESOLUTION 2272 (2016)

In March 2016, through Resolution 2272, the UNSC expressed its concern
over the allegations of sexual exploitation or abuse perpetrated by UN
peacekeepers and called for the Secretary-General to replace all personnel from
any contributing country that had failed to hold perpetrators accountable.


RESOLUTION 1631 (2005)

As to regional arrangements, the Council recognized in Resolution 1631
(2005) the role of regional organizations in the maintenance of international peace
and security, as well as addressed for the first time the need of cooperation
between the UN and such organizations on the matter.

RESOLUTION 1809 (2008)

In 2008, Resolution 1809 advocated the need to render financing regional
organizations more predictable, sustainable and flexible when they undertake UN-
mandated peacekeeping.

RESOLUTION 2033 (2012)

In specific regard to the African Union, in Resolution 2033 (2012) the
Council called for a closer relationship with the African Union Peace and Security
Council in the areas of conflict prevention and resolution and electoral assistance.
The aforementioned Resolution 2171 (2014) ultimately fostered such relationship
and praised the establishment of a joint AU-UN panel to consider options for
better supporting the multiple stakeholders which take part in peace operations.


RESOLUTION 2282 (2016)

Finally, it is important to address the recently adopted Resolution 2282,
from April 2016, in the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the PBC. Welcoming
the 2015 Challenges to Sustainable Peace report, it provides a comprehensive
view on UN post-conflict peacebuilding. The UNSC stressed that transitional
justice and an accountable security sector are the foundations to prevent conflict
from relapse and to prepare countries for development, and called for
strengthening collaboration between the UN and the World Bank in the efforts in
conflict-affected areas. Following the recommendations set in the 2015 report, the
document suggests that peacebuilding should have its notion expanded, in a
broader understanding of “sustaining peace.” In addition, it highlights the
necessity of encompassing women’s leadership and the participation of young
people in the whole peacebuilding effort.

Positions of Major Nations and Blocs


The United States of America understands multilateral peace operations as a

way to share the risks and responsibilities of maintaining international peace and
security. Although the US is the leading budgetary contributor to UN peacekeeping,
the rise of its unilateral interventionism has decreased its troop contribution. With
the end of Obama’s administration, however, it calls for a more active role in
multilateral processes. Security rationales largely justify the American support for
UN-led operations, as they are believed to help to protect the borders and police
the territory of conflict-affected states—in the country’s post-9/11 perception, the
major threats to its national security and the security of its allies could emanate from
underdeveloped and remote areas. In this context, the US recognizes that the UN is
failing to protect civilians and to project force in the territories where it is present,
and advocates for a more interventionist attitude. It also identifies a clear link
between peacekeeping and peacebuilding efforts, seeing peacekeepers as early
peacebuilders. Such position was allegedly put into practice in recent
multidimensional missions, such as those in Mali and the Central African Republic,
mandated to strengthen security sector and rule of law. Finally, the country calls for
transparency from post-conflict governments in fund-spending, so that all resources
mobilized for peacebuilding are directed towards national peace and statebuilding
priorities. In this regard, the democratic institutional framework is the most
adequate to tackle corruption and to drive resources to education and


The United Kingdom has recently committed to more than doubling its
military contribution to UN peace operations, particularly in the current missions in
Somalia (UNSOS) and South Sudan (UNMISS). In the British view, the importance of
such operations lies in containing violence, stabilizing fragile post-conflict situations,
reducing the likelihood of conflict recurrence, and avoiding the need for direct and
unilateral military interventions. The UK is keen to ensure that UN missions support
political processes which will deliver long-term stability, and that they stay no longer
than necessary. The November 2015 Strategic Defense and Security Review
reinforces the country’s commitment to strengthen the rules-based international
order and its institutions, calling for a more joined-up approach to peacebuilding
and statebuilding in the UN system. It also advocates that the British military shall
better prepare to conduct UN-led operations to restore peace and stability, and
that the UK shall deploy more law-enforcing measures and civilian experts, as well
as continue training foreign peacekeepers.


France considers that bolstering fragile states is one of the priorities of its
foreign policy in the post-2015 agenda and commits to strengthening UN efforts in
peacebuilding. The country has played a major role in peace operations in the
African continent, notably in Mali, Central African Republic and Côte d’Ivoire, as it
understands that insecurity in Africa can potentially impact on French security. In the
French view, the implementation of mandates entails comprehensive action:
political management and prevention of crises, support for the restoration of state’s
authority and, when necessary, the use of force. France reiterates the necessity of
adapting peace operations to the protection of civilians. It calls for a better
articulation in the transition between peacekeeping and peacebuilding activities,
counting on the PBC to provide consistency for the international community in the
exit strategy.


The People’s Republic of China is currently the eighth largest troop
contributor to UN peace operations, most of those located in the African continent.
For China, the presence in UN missions is as a way to be globally present,
guaranteeing its national interests, namely stable government in the African
continent and military presence abroad. Concerning post-conflict reconstruction,
China does not relativize sovereignty and deems international agencies as partners
to local governments, but recalls that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to
peacebuilding and statebuilding. It stresses the necessity of supporting cooperation
between regional actors and organizations and the international community,
reiterating the need for economic and social development in order to address the
deep-rooted causes of conflict. The peaceful co-existence and the mutual
noninterference on internal affairs, two guiding principles of the Chinese foreign
policy, demonstrates how important it is for China to ensure multilateral answers to
international problems. Respecting peaceful co-existence, peace operations may
not be considered illegal interventions


Since the end of the Cold War, the Russian Federation has been substantially
present in peacekeeping activities in the Commonwealth of Independent States

(CIS), arguing that such presence constitutes a significant component of its national
security and stability. In the UN system, Russia has repeatedly participated in
prevention or elimination of internecine and inter-ethnic conflicts in other far-abroad
countries. The country believes that the compliance of the basic principles
governing peacekeeping—i.e. consent, impartiality, and nonuse of force—is vital for
effective operations. However, according to Russian authorities, this has not been
the case in recent times, as some countries have considered such principles as
hindrances to carrying out the missions’ mandates and, arguably, interventionary
endeavors. In special regard to the protection of civilians, Russia outlines that
counterterrorist operations must be performed with caution and dealt with only by
specially trained and equipped national security forces. It also recalls that post-
conflict peacebuilding and statebuilding should be nationally-owned processes,
which only national stakeholders can undertake. The UN and other international
organizations are supporters and facilitators. Their assistance should be provided to
states upon request and concentrated on capacity-building, bearing the national
sovereignty and independence of states

Definition of Key Terms


First organization in the world created to try and maintain world peace by
cooperation between nations. It was founded in 1918, after the First World War,
and lasted until the end of the Second World War, when it was replaced by the
Unite Nations.


Report ordered by Secretary General Kofi Anan the assess the shortcomings and
effectiveness of UN peacekeeping missions worldwide. It concluded that for the
UN to function to its full capacity there needed to be further funding, commitment
by member states and operate under more realistic mandates. PKO- peace
building operations, the process by which UN peacekeepers monitor and observe
peace processes that arise in post-conflict areas.


The name UN peacekeepers are sometimes called due to their blue headgear.
They may be used to maintain peace pending security council approval


Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration is a process followed by the
security to restore peace to war torn regions by helping combatants adjust to their
normal life after having been an active part of a conflicted region


Security Sector Reform is an essential process nations must go through in order to
reform their security sectors and make sure they abide by the international human


Policy Coordinator Branch, is a governing body, which works with policy, strategy,
finance, monitoring and evaluation. A PCB is used to look over UNAIDS, for


Urgent temporary measures are extreme measures taken by the international
community in extraordinary situations and which are supposed to last for a limited
period of time.

Guiding Questions

1. Have UN peace operations been significant in promoting the organization’s
utmost purpose: maintaining international peace and security?

2. Under which conditions is the UN entitled to use force? Should blue helmets
adopt more robust measures in hostile environments?

3. How can the protection of civilians and the implementation of human rights
apply to UN peace operations?

4. What is the importance of regional arrangements and how can their efforts
be combined with UN peace operations?

5. Is sovereignty a flexible concept in the context of UN-led peace processes?
To which extent may state authority be extended?

6. Is there a one-size-fits-all strategy of statebuilding? How can the UN foster
host countries’ national ownership? Which criteria should be prioritized in
planning for exit strategies?

Further Research
UN Peacekeeping
• What is peacekeeping?
• Current operations
• Past operations
• Forming a new operation
• Financing
• Issues
• Reports
• Statistics

Articles & Reports
• UN article “State Building in Crisis and Post-Conflict Countries” (2007)
• UNHCHR report “Rule-of-Law Tools for Post-Conflict States”
• UNSC report on “The future of United Nations peace operations”

• Article on the “Implications of Peacebuilding and Statebuilding in United
Nations Mandates”

UN Documents
• Peacekeeping
• Peacebuilding (including the PCB)
• Conflict Prevention and Mediation
• Post-Conflict Stabilization, including DDR and SSR
• Authorizations to Use Force


Question of reestablishing political stability as well as peace and security in the nation of Libya

Topic Description

The 2011 Arab Spring, an upheaval against the violent and absolutist
regimes in the Arab world, brought about a major reaction from the Libyan
population against their dictator, Muammar Gaddafi. The revolutionary protests
were received with a brutal reaction from the government, which then attempted to
suppress the demonstrators by way of physical violence, censorship, government
media campaigns, amongst other methods.
This captured the attention of the international community, and with the
approval of the UNSC resolution 1973, a NATO coalition led by the United States
alongside the National Liberation Army (the main rebel group) managed to
overthrow Gaddafi. Since his deposition and subsequent death, Libya has been the
stage of an ensuing battle for power.

The country’s instability stems from the absence of one central government.
Instead, distinct forces push for control, the main ones being the nationalists, the
Islamists, and the new Presidential Council, who each have their own legislature and
political bodies. Anyhow, the additional presence of a kaleidoscope of smaller
independent militias cannot be ignored. During Gaddafi’s brutal rule, any diverging
opinions were kept from being manifested, but as presently Libya lacks a strong
central power, that is no longer the case.
Also, with the looming threat of Daesh and other terrorist organizations that
have managed to infiltrate the country, the Security Council must rapidly decide
upon a solution to its disunity, as a nation cannot fight the war against terror when it
has not itself achieved peace.

Background Information


The country of Libya is located to the north of the African continent,
bordering Tunisia, Algeria, Niger, Chad, Sudan and Egypt. Its predominant climate
is a hot desert one, and, as a result, nearly 90% of its population is concentrated in
its coast, where there is access to the Mediterranean Sea. Furthermore, it is divided
into three provinces, Tripolitania, Fezzan and
Cyneraica; the former and latter being home to the
majority of Libya’s oil reserve, the largest one in the
African continent.
Throughout its history, the territory housing
modern-day Libya has been occupied by numerous
peoples and empires, these distinctly influenced
each of its three regions; Cyneraica has mostly a
Greek legacy, Tripolitania retained more influences
from the Roman Empire, and Fezzan remained a semi-nomadic region.
However, the 16th Century Ottoman occupation brought about a first
attempt at unification, which was met with hesitation from the population. During
that time, the Senussi movement, which was stimulated by the doctrine of Islam,
spread throughout Cyneraica (and later into parts of Tripolitania and Fezzan). The
Senussi firstly rebelled against the current Ottoman occupation, but with the

looming threat of the Italians, who in 1911 attempted to seize and annex the area to
their colonial possessions, the Senussi and Ottoman bond was strengthened. They
fought against Christian occupation, finding
common ground in their Islamic faith.
The resistance was maintained until 1931,
when the Italians were ultimately able to seize
control and, in 1934, declare the newly named
Libya a part of a “Greater Italy”. Their control was
maintained until the Second World War, which
brought with it an opportunity for the creation of a
resistance movement against the Axis powers, led
by Idris of Libya. The 1945 Allied victory meant Libya’s regions became mandates of
the United Kingdom and France; they were granted a fair amount of independence,
especially the British controlled Cyneraica. Soon after, with the approval of the
recently formed United Nations, Idris of Libya became the leader of the United
Kingdom of Libya.
Under his rule, which was sympathetic to the Allied powers, allowing for
military bases and trade, the country’s regions became even more autonomous;
each controlled their own parliament and budget. However, with the discovery of
large oil reserves, the king saw it necessary to unify the country, as to allow for
easier control of its resources.
The end of the Libyan monarchy came about in the1960’s, due to, firstly, the
nationalistic wave inspired by Egyptian leader Gamal Abdel Nasser, alongside
widespread corruption in government, inadequate distribution of income and the
population’s complete exclusion from political decisions. The military, led by
Muammar el-Gaddafi, saw an opportunity to seize control.


The end of the Libyan monarchy came about in
the1960’s, due to, firstly, the nationalistic wave inspired by
Egyptian leader Gamal Abdel Nasser, alongside
widespread corruption in government, inadequate
distribution of income and the population’s complete
exclusion from political decisions. The military, led by
Muammar el-Gaddafi, saw an opportunity to seize control,
which they did, in 1969.

Inspired by Nasser’s Pan Arabism, socialism and the Islamic doctrine, Gaddafi
completely revolutionized politics in Libya. His political philosophy was expressed in
his “Greek Book”, published in 1975. In it, Libya’s new leader rejected western
liberal democracy, favouring an alternate direct democracy, where the population
would have a more influential voice on legislation. However, in 1979, Gaddafi
observed the method was hindering Libya’s progress, as most citizens maintained
themselves alienated from politics. That led him to place the power into
Revolutionary Command Councils, which would oversee the police, army,
international policy, budget and oil market.
Furthermore, throughout the next two decades, Libya’s relationship with the
international community deteriorated rapidly. Having already closed both British
and American military bases in the country, Gaddafi also created training camps for
armed groups, which included wanted terrorists. Yet, conflict only came in 1986,
when American intelligence learnt the Libyan government was involved in the attack
on “La Belle discothèque” nightclub, in West Berlin. The United States responded
by bombing the Libyan cities of Tripoli and Benghazi. This was followed by the 1988
Lockerbie Bombing, in which a Pan Am aircraft was targeted, killing all 246
passengers and 16 crew members. Two Libyan citizens were appointed as the
bombers, nonetheless Gaddafi refused to hand them over th United States, or to
pay for reparations to the victims; this, and the country’s alleged manufacturing of
Chemical weapons, led to the UN approval of sanctions against Libya in 1992.
In 1999, suffering widespread pressure from the international community,
Libya began to rebuild its relationships, and improve its reputation, worldwide. That
same year, the two suspects of the Lockerbie bombing were released into the
custody of the United States. In 2001, Libya accepted responsibility for the actions
of its officials regarding the attack. Moreover, as UN sanctions were lifted, Libya
ceased its production of chemical weapons, resumed diplomatic relations with the
United Kingdom, and in 2003 received a visit from US Secretary of State
Condoleezza Rice.
This period of relative peace was merely true internationally, as nationally the
population was deeply unsatisfied with its authoritarian dictator’s political regime;
that explains why the 2011 Arab spring, and its wave of protests, also took place in
Libya. The government responded with brutal repression, and a battle between its
forces and the revolutionaries followed. As a result of this, the 1973 UN resolution
was approved, creating a no-fly zone over Libya, as to protect the civilians.
However, as NATO and allied Arab nations became directly involved, a military
intervention in favour of the rebels began, not only to protect them, but to also take

down Gaddafi. In 2011, a UN approved National Transitional Council was declared,
and in October of that same year, the man who commanded Libya with an Iron fist
for over 40 years, Muammar Gaddafi, was killed by rebels.


The National Transitional Council held elections for Libya in 2012, and the
new congress, the General National Congress (GNC) was elected in 2012. The
Prime Minister, Ali Zeidan, was then appointed, but ousted in 2014 in favour of
Abdullah Al-Thani. Due to the militarized forces from the first civil war, there were
several disparate armed groups across
Libya, making the maintenance of a
united central government challenging.
In 2014, Libya’s National
Liberation Army (LNA), a secular Libyan
military agent under General Khalifa
Haftar, put it upon themselves to
eliminate Jihadists forces in the country,
who were mainly concentrated in
Benghazi. They also advanced in Tripoli, and overthrew the General National
Congress to call for the election of a new Libyan legislative body, as the GNC was
knowingly comprised of Jihadist leaders. This was known as Operation Dignity. The
House of Representatives was then elected, and was internationally recognized as
Libya’s rightful government.
As a response, Jihadist leaders of extremist groups such as Ansar Al-Sharia
launched the Fajr Libya, or Operation Dawn. Even though it was comprised of
groups with slightly different philosophies, most of them wanted the restoration of
the GNC in Libya. They then declared the New General Congressional Council in
Tripoli, with Omar al-Hasi as its leader. Meanwhile, the HoR, in Tobruk, was being
managed by Prime Minister Al-Thini.
These two governments then began fighting over not only territory,
but also, as a result, monetary power. They mainly focused on trying to gain control
of the country’s main oil refineries, however even though Fajr Libya did so, they
didn’t have the international stance the HoR had to negotiate, as they aren’t
recognized as a legitimate government by OPEC. (Organization of Oil Exporting
Countries). In addition to oil exportations, the country’s main actors depend upon
human trafficking and the militia black market to survive. The Libyan Central Bank

attempts to remain neutral throughout the conflict, but there are reports its reserves
are low and is going bankrupt.


The Libyan conflict has progressed greatly in the last few years, as the United
Nation brokered the Libyan Political Agreement (LPA) between the two rivalling
Tripoli and Tobruk governments. It delineated the creation of the Government of
National Accord, an interim government that is led by Prime Minister Fayez al-
Sarraj, with the Presidential Council acting as its head of state. The House of
Representatives is supposed to be cooperative towards it, being its legislative body,
however that has not always been the case. Even though that is the internationally
recognized Libyan government, some of the former General National Congress
members have not endorsed it, creating the Government of National Salvation
instead. They are led by Khalifa Ghwell and do not control any relevant institutions,
as most of the former GNC members chose to cooperate with the State Council, a
consultative governing body created under the LPA.

The Security Council most recently adopted resolution 2323 in regards to the
Libyan conflict, renewing UNSMIL’s mandate for 9 months and focusing on
continuous reinforcement of the Libyan Political Agreement (LPA), to empower the
Government of National Accord (GNA). The Council’s main recent concerns are the
difficulty of achieving progress with the political implementation of the LPA, the
polarization of forces in Libya and the generally positive media portrayal of the
conflict’s progress.

The LPA has not been able to achieve more widespread support in Libya
itself, even though there has been large international support for its existence
elsewhere. Also, politically, the Presidency Council’s attempts at governing become
strenuous as it suffers from member boycotts and the HoR refuses to endorse it.
This results on it having to rely upon militias to keep the country alive, hindering the
LPA objective of a unified government.
Another main concern is of course the proliferation of extremist groups and
ideals throughout Libya. Recently, the Libyan National Army and militia forces
aligned with the HoR have experienced military successes against Islamic State in
Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and its affiliates. An example is the takeover of Sirte, which
was being controlled by the terrorist group.
However, the LNA, led by Khalifa Haftar has been having friction with other
militias allied with the Presidency Council. This is because several militias attempted
to take over oil facilities that have been under the control of the LNA and managed
by the National Oil Corporation
since September 2016. This
brought dissatisfaction to the LNA,
which is one of the main forces
fighting against terrorist groups in
the region. As they have the
opportunity to combat ISIL on the
ground, Haftar is then attempting
to remove the arms embargoes placed upon him, even visiting Russian Admiral
Kuznetsov to ask for support lifting the arms embargo for the LNA.
Encouraging the continuous dialogue between these disparate political
forces seems to be the way Libya’s bordering countries believe to be the best
solution. During a joint statement in January 2017, they stressed the comprehensive
political dialogue between all Libyan parties as the only way out of the crisis,
rejecting a military solution to the conflict. Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shokry
even expressed his intention to convene direct talks between the leaders of the
Presidency Council, the House of Representatives and Haftar.

Positions of Major Nations and Blocs

The Western nations, especially those which are part of the North American
Trade Organization (NATO) have kept relative distance from the conflict in recent
years, as the deposing of Muammar Gaddafi brought about severe criticism due to
its effects on the Libyan nation. The USA has done so mildly; however, they are still
heavily involved in surveillance, utilizing technologies such as drones to monitor the
situation in Libya, especially in regards to terrorist organizations. The country has
positioned itself as being against both Egyptian and Emirati aerial attacks in the
region. The countries in Europe, such as the UK, France and Italy, are most
concerned with immigration in regards to the crisis, with the fear of ISIL proliferation
in Europe, right winged parties in the 3 countries have been taking tougher stances
on refugees coming into the country. Also, there is a concern about the oil market,
as the European Union is highly dependent on Libyan Oil reserves (75% in 2011).


Arab Nations have a more direct influence on the conflict in Libya due to
their geographical proximity, and similar concern regarding the fast propagation of
the Islamic State within their borders. Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi
Arabia have shown themselves to be heavily invested on the conflict. There is the
fear of the delicate political situation driving more people towards the Muslim
Brotherhood. These countries lend their forces to Libya, and have in many
occasions taking direct military action in regards to the conflict. However, these
interventions do not seem to be very successful, as they seem to incite further
anger. Differently, both Turkey and Qatar have taken similar stances of creating
distance from the conflict, and isolating themselves politically. There is the suspicion
they are supporting jihadist militias within Libyan borders, Turkey for example has
removed their diplomatic offices from the Libyan city of Benghazi. Egypt seems to
also support General Haftar and the Libyan National Army in their efforts, the
country justifies this by citing concerns for its western border security.

Timeline of Events

7th century BC - Phoenicians settle in Tripolitania in western Libya, which was hitherto
populated by Berbers.
6th century BC - Carthage conquers Tripolitania.

4th century BC - Greeks colonise Cyrenaica in the east of the country, which they call Libya.

74 BC - Romans conquer Libya.

AD 643 - Arabs under Amr Ibn al-As conquer Libya and spread Islam.

16th century - Libya becomes part of the Ottoman Empire, which joins the three provinces of
Tripolitania, Cyrenaica and Fezzan into one regency in Tripoli.
1911-12 - Italy seizes Libya from the Ottomans. Omar al-Mukhtar begins 20-year insurgency
against Italian rule.
1920s - Libyan resistance grows as Senussi dynasty joins in alongside the Mukhtar campaign.

1931 - Italy breaks resistance through combination of major armed operations and
concentration camps for rebel population. Al-Mukhtar is captured and executed.
1934 - Italy unites the provinces as the colony of Libya and steps up Italian migration as part of
an eventual plan for the incorporation of Libya into a Greater Italy.
1942 - Allies oust Italians from Libya, which is then divided between the French, who administer
Fezzan, and the British, who control Cyrenaica and Tripolitania.
1951 - Libya becomes independent under King Idris al-Sanusi.

1956 - Libya grants two American oil companies a concession of some 14 million acres.

1961 - King Idris opens a 104-mile pipeline, which links important oil fields in the interior to the
Mediterranean Sea and makes it possible to export Libyan oil for the first time.
1969 - King Idris deposed in military coup led by Col Muammar Gaddafi, who pursues a pan-
Arab agenda by attempting to form mergers with several Arab countries, and introduces state
socialism by nationalising most economic activity, including the oil industry.
1969: Bloodless coup in Libya
Colonel Gaddafi's Libya
1970 - Libya orders the closure of a British airbase in Tobruk and the giant US Wheelus air force
base in Tripoli; property belonging to Italian settlers nationalised.
1971 - National referendum approves proposed Federation of Arab Republics (FAR) comprising
Libya, Egypt and Syria. However, the FAR never takes off.
1973 - Col Gaddafi declares a "cultural revolution", which includes the formation of "people's
committees" in schools, hospitals, universities, workplaces and administrative districts; Libyan
forces occupy Aozou Strip in northern Chad.
1977 - Col Gaddafi declares a "people's revolution", changing the country's official name from
the Libyan Arab Republic to the Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriyah and setting up

"revolutionary committees" - heralding the start of institutionalised chaos, economic decline
and general arbitrariness.
1980 - Libyan troops intervene in civil war in northern Chad.

1981 - US shoots down two Libyan aircraft which challenged its warplanes over the Gulf of Sirte,
claimed by Libya as its territorial water.
1988: Jumbo jet crashes onto Lockerbie
In Depth: Lockerbie appeal
1984 - UK breaks off diplomatic relations with Libya after a British policewoman is shot dead
outside the Libyan embassy in London while anti-Gaddafi protests were taking place.
1986 - US bombs Libyan military facilities, residential areas of Tripoli and Benghazi, killing 101
people, and Gaddafi's house, killing his adopted daughter. US says raids were in response to
alleged Libyan involvement in bombing of Berlin disco frequented by US military personnel.
1988 December - Lockerbie bombing - an airliner is blown up over the Scottish town of
Lockerbie, allegely by Libyan agents.
1989 - Libya, Algeria, Morocco, Mauritania and Tunisia form the Arab Maghreb Union.

1992 - UN imposes sanctions on Libya in an effort to force it to hand over for trial two of its
citizens suspected of involvement in the blowing up of a PanAm airliner over the Scottish town
of Lockerbie in December 1988.
1994 - Libya returns the Aozou Strip to Chad.

1995 - Gaddafi expels some 30,000 Palestinians in protest at the Oslo accords between the
Palestine Liberation Organisation and Israel.
1999 - Lockerbie suspects handed over for trial in the Netherlands under Scottish law; UN
sanctions suspended; diplomatic relations with UK restored.
2000 September - Dozens of African immigrants are killed by Libyan mobs in the west of Libya
who were said to be angry at the large number of African labourers coming into the country.
2001 31 January- Special Scottish court in the Netherlands finds one of the two Libyans accused
of the Lockerbie bombing, Abdelbaset Ali Mohamed al-Megrahi, guilty and sentences him to
life imprisonment. Megrahi's co-accused, Al-Amin Khalifa Fahimah, is found not guilty and
2001 May - Libyan troops help to quell a coup attempt against President Ange-Felix Patasse of
the Central African Republic.
2002 January - Libya and the US say they have held talks to mend relations after years of
hostility over what the Americans termed Libya's sponsorship of terrorism.
2002 14 March - The Libyan man found guilty of the Lockerbie bombing, Abdelbaset Ali
Mohmed al-Megrahi, loses his appeal against the conviction and begins a life sentence of at
least 20 years.
2003 January - Libya is elected chairman of the UN Human Rights Commission despite
opposition from the US and human rights groups.

2003 August - Libya signs a deal worth $2.7bn to compensate families of the Lockerbie
bombing victims. Libya takes responsibility for the bombing in a letter to the UN Security
2003 September - UN Security Council votes to lift sanctions.

2003 December - Libya says will abandon programmes to develop weapons of mass
2004 January - Libya agrees to compensate families of victims of 1989 bombing of French
passenger aircraft over Sahara.
2004 March - British Prime Minister Tony Blair visits, the first such visit since 1943.

2004 May - Five Bulgarian nurses and a Palestinian doctor are sentenced to death having been
accused of deliberately infecting some 400 children with HIV. They are eventually freed under a
deal with the European union.
2004 August - Libya agrees to pay $35m to compensate victims of the bombing of a Berlin
nightclub in 1986.
2005 January - Libya's first auction of oil and gas exploration licences heralds the return of US
energy companies for the first time in more than 20 years.
2006 February - At least 10 people are killed in clashes with police in Benghazi, part of a wave
of international protests by Muslims who are angered by a Danish newspaper's cartoon
depictions of the Prophet Muhammad.
2006 May - The US says it is restoring full diplomatic ties with Libya.

2007 January - Prime minister announces plan to make redundant 400,000 government workers
- more than a third of the total workforce - to stimulate the private sector and ease public
2008 January - Libya takes over one-month rotating presidency of the UN Security Council in a
step back to respectability after decades as a pariah of the West.
2008 August - Libya and US sign agreement committing each side to compensate all victims of
bombing attacks on the other's citizens. Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi apologises to
Libya for damage inflicted by Italy during the colonial era and signs a five billion dollar
investment deal by way of compensation.
2008 September - US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice makes historic visit - the highest-level
US visit to Libya since 1953. Ms Rice says relations between the US and Libya have entered a
"new phase".
2009 February - Gaddafi elected chairman of the African Union by leaders meeting in Ethiopia.
Sets out ambition of "United States of Africa" even embracing the Caribbean.
2009 June - Gaddafi pays first state visit to Italy, Libya's former colonial ruler and now its main
trading partner.
2009 August - Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi is freed from gaol in Scotland on
compassionate grounds and returned to Libya. His release and return to a hero's welcome
causes a storm of controversy.
2009 December- Diplomatic row with Switzerland and European Union after one of Gaddafi's
sons is held in Switzerland on charges of mistreating domestic workers.

2010 January - Russia agrees to sell Libya weapons in a deal worth $1.8bn. The deal is thought
to include fighter jets, tanks and air defence systems.
2010 June - UN refugee agency UNHCR expelled.

2010 July - US senators push for inquiry into claims that oil giant BP lobbied for Lockerbie
bomber's release.
2010 October - European Union and Libya sign agreement designed to slow illegal migration.

2010 December - US diplomatic cables published by WikiLeaks indicate that Gaddafi
threatened to cut trade with Britain if Lockerbie bomber died in prison.
2011 February - Inspired by revolts in other Arab countries, especially neighbouring Egypt and
Tunisia, violent protests break out in Benghazi, spread to other cities, leading to escalating
clashes between security forces and anti-Gaddafi rebels.
2011 March - UN Security Council authorises a no-fly zone over Libya and air strikes to protect
civilians, over which NATO assumes command. Libyan rebels initially capture territory but are
then forced back by better-armed pro-Gaddafi forces.
2011 July - The International Contact Group on Libya formally recognises the main opposition
group, the National Transitional Council (NTC), as the legitimate government of Libya.
2011 August - Col Gaddafi goes into hiding after rebel’s swarm into his fortress compound in
Tripoli. His wife and three of his children flee to neighbouring Algeria.
2011 August-September - African Union joins 60 countries which have recognised the NTC as
the new Libyan authority.
2011 20 October - Col Gaddafi is captured and killed as rebel fighters take his hometown Sirte.
Three days later, the NTC declares Libya to be officially "liberated" and announces plans to
hold elections within eight months.
2011 November - Saif al-Islam, the fugitive son of former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, is
captured, becoming the last key Gaddafi family member to be seized or killed.
2012 January - Clashes erupt between former rebel forces in Benghazi in sign of discontent with
the pace and nature of change under the governing NTC. The deputy head of the NTC, Abdel
Hafiz Ghoga, resigns.
2012 March - NTC officials in the oil-rich east, centred on Benghazi, launch a campaign to re-
establish autonomy for the region, further increasing tension with the central NTC in Tripoli.
2012 May - Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi dies in Tripoli. A private funeral is
2012 June - Government struggles to control local militias, especially in Zintan in the West. The
Al-Awfea Brigade briefly takes over Tripoli International Airport, and a pro-autonomy mob
ransacks the election commission building in Benghazi.
2012 August - Transitional government hands power to the General National Congress, which
was elected in July. The Congress elects Mohammed Magarief of the liberal National Front
Party as its chairman, thereby making him interim head of state.
2012 September - US ambassador and three other Americans are killed when Islamist militants,
including Ansar al-Sharia, storm the consulate in Benghazi. General National Congress head

Mohammed al-Magarief vows to disband all illegal militias after crowds in Benghazi drive out
the Ansar al-Sharia and other militias from the city and nearby Derna.
2012 October - National Congress elects Ali Zeidan, a liberal and leading opposition envoy
during the civil war, to the post of prime minister.
2012 December - Former Prime Minister al-Baghdadi al-Mahmoudi goes on trial in Tripoli on
charges of "acts that led to the unjust killing of Libyans" and of funnelling about $25m of public
money through Tunisia to help forces loyal to Col Gaddafi.
2013 May - Chairman of General National Congress (GNC), Muhammad al-Magarief, announces
his resignation in compliance with a new law that bans Gaddafi-era officials from holding public
2013 June - The General National Congress elects independent MP Nuri Abu Sahmein as
chairman. He is a member of the Berber minority that suffered discrimination under Col
2013 August - Petroleum Facilities Guard militia begins blockade of oil export terminals.

2014 February - Protests erupt in response to the General National Congress refusal to disband
after mandate expires.
2014 March - GNC sacks Prime Minister Ali Zeidan after a tanker laden with oil from a rebel-held
port breaks through a Libyan navy blockade, elects businessman Ahmed Maiteg prime minister
in heated scenes.
2014 April - Petroleum Facilities Guard militia lifts closure of two oil terminals.

2014 May - "Libyan National Army" renegade general Khalifa Haftar launches military assault
including airstrikes against militant Islamist groups in Benghazi; tries to seize parliament
building, accusing Prime Minister Maiteg of being in thrall to Islamist groups.
2014 June - Prime Minister Maiteg resigns after supreme court rules his appointment illegal.
New parliament chosen in elections marred by a low turn-out attributed to security fears and
boycotts; Islamists suffer heavy defeat. Fighting breaks out between forces loyal to outgoing
GNC and new parliament.
2014 July - UN staff pull out, embassies shut, foreigners evacuated as security situation
deteriorates. Tripoli international airport is largely destroyed by fighting. Ansar al-Sharia seizes
control of most of Benghazi.
2014 October - UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon visits to continue UN-brokered talks
between the new parliament and government based in Tobruk and Islamist Libya Dawn militias
holding Tripoli. UN says 100,000s displaced by clashes. Islamic State extremist militia seizes
control of port of Derna in eastern Libya.
2015 January - Libyan army and Tripoli-based militia alliance declare partial ceasefire after UN-
sponsored talks in Geneva.
2015 February - Egyptian jets bomb Islamic State targets in Derna, a day after the group there
released a video showing the beheading of 21 Egyptian Christians. Libyan Army offensive to
retake Derna in March fails to dislodge the group. IS establishes control over port-city of Sirte,
halfway along coast between Tripoli and Benghazi.
2015 July - A Tripoli court sentences Gaddafi's sons Saif al-Islam and eight other former officials
to death for crimes committed during the 2011 uprising against his father.

2016 January - UN announces new, Tunisia-based interim government, but neither Tobruk nor
Tripoli parliaments agree to recognise its authority. Islamic State group attacks Ras Lanuf oil
terminal, threatens to move on to Brega and Tobruk.
2016 March - New "unity" government arrives in Tripoli by boat after opposing forces block
2016 April - UN staff return to Tripoli after absence of nearly two years.

2016 September - Libyan National Army (LNA) of General Khalifa Haftar seizes key oil export
terminals in the east.
2016 December - Pro-government forces oust Islamic State militants from coastal town of Sirte,
which they had seized 18 months previously.

*This timeline was taken from

Definition of Key Terms

The temporary government set up after the end of the first Libyan Civil War, which
held elections for the new GNC.


A legislative body in charge of the country of Libya, which was appointed after
taking the place of the National Transitional Council. It was not able to fulfil its
promise of drafting a constitution for the country in 18 months


Formed under the Libyan Political Agreement, the PC is a body of nine members
that act as the heads of state of Libya.


An army group created during the First Libyan Civil War, helped directly with the
fall of Muammar Gaddafi. It is commanded by General Khalifa Haftar


This is the legislative body for Libya as defined by the LPA, it took power from the
GNC in 2014. The Libyan Supreme Court ruled these elections were constitutional

and deemed the government not legitimate, even though it is recognized


Created in 1960, the organization consists of Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and
Venezuela. It controls 42% of Global production.


Agreement brokered by the United Nations in December of 2015 between the
political forces in Libya to go from a dual form of government, to one strong
central one. It has been difficult to reinforce in the country


Government formed under the LPA, making it the solely internationally recognized
form of Libyan government. It is formed by 17 ministers and presided over by the
Presidential Council.

Guiding Questions
1. How can the Libyan Political Agreement be reinforced in Libya? Should it be?

2. In what ways can the Security Council reduce the presence of dangerous
militias in Libya?

3. The arrival of ISIL in Libyan borders has complicated the already delicate
political situation, how can this be managed?

4. How much autonomy should the given to the Libyan National Army? Should
the arms ban placed on them be maintained?

5. Should the international community continue to involve themselves in the
conflict, using air raids and ground forces for example?

Further Research
Explaining the current main actors in the crisis

Detailed chronology of events

Explanation using graphics

UN documents for Libya