12 - New Arrangements for Peace Negotiation  pp. 227-246

New Arrangements for Peace Negotiation

By Teresa Whitfield

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In the fifteen years following the end of the Cold War, the landscape in which peace negotiations are conducted was transformed quite comprehensively as a result of a number of different factors. These include a change in the conflicts in which settlement was attempted through mediation – notably a move away from the Cold War conflicts whose proxy nature left open the possibility of leverage on contending parties by their former patrons – but also a change in the nature of mediators. Thus developments in the global security environment, including the launch by the United States of the “war on terrorism” in the aftermath of the attacks of September 11, 2001, were in many instances accompanied by a shift away from great power or United Nations (UN)-led negotiations to much more complex scenarios in which a variety of peacemakers, or would-be peacemakers, pressed for involvement.

From the mid-1990s a profusion of peacemakers saw multilateral and great power mediators working alongside or in partnership with small and middle powers, or “helpful fixer” peacemakers as well as regional and subregional organizations, and an increasing array of nongovernmental or private actors. This reflected a global context – widely analyzed elsewhere in this volume – in which the culture, distribution, and use of power were both dominated by the assertion of the might of the United States and diffused by the roles assumed by new actors and forces in international peace and security.

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