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Published by Enhelion, 2019-11-24 05:21:44

Module_4 (Pubic International Law)

Module_4 (Pubic International Law)




As per the Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms, (US Department of Defense 2005) the
term “peacekeeping” is defined as-
“Military operations undertaken with the consent of all major parties to a dispute, designed to m
onitor and facilitateimplementation of an agreement (ceasefire, truce, or other such agreement)
and support diplomatic efforts to reach a political settlement.”

In the other sense, peace is political conditions that guarantee social justice and stability through
institutions, procedures and the formal and non-formal norms (Miller, 2005). In the etymological
meaning, peace can be described as any of the following:
• State which is prevailing in the absence of a war,
• Treaty after the war,
• State of harmony and balance (Free Collins Dictionaries),
• The silence and calmness state1

The United Nations is one of the main international organization which was formed to maintain
peace and security among the countries. It was founded in the wake of World War II with the
expectation of saving future generations from the scourge of war, and maintaining peace and
security in conformity with the principles of justice and international law.
As per the United Nations, the term “peace-keeping” is defined as:

1 (Soltani, R., & Moradi, M. (2017). The Evolution of the Concept of International Peace and Security in light of
UN Security Council Practice (End of the Cold War-Until Now). Open Journal of Political Science, 7, 133-144.

"A peacekeeping operation has come to be defined as an operation involving military personnel,
but without enforcement powers, undertaken by the United Nations to help maintain or restore
international peace and security in areas of conflict. These operations are voluntary and are
based on consent and co-operation.”


The United Nations was established in 1945 to save succeeding generations from the scourge of
war and one of its main purposes is to maintain international peace and security.
The Charter of the United Nations gives the Security Council which is primary responsibility for
the maintenance of international peace and security. In fulfilling this responsibility, the Security
Council may adopt a range of measures, including the establishment of United
Nations peacekeeping operations, whenever there is a threat to the peace in a region. The
Council may also decide on sanctions, such as trade embargoes, to enforce its decisions. The
Council expresses its will in resolutions.

4.2.1. Basic Charter Provisions2

The basic provisions of the charter provide the functions of the Security Council and the General
Assembly are given below:

i) Relative Powers Of The Security Council And The General Assembly.

Under Article 24 of the charter, the Security Council has "primary responsibility" in
questions of peace and security. It is invested with special powers enabling it to decide, on
behalf of the entire UN membership, to take collective action when peace is threatened
(Articles 39–42) and is empowered to negotiate agreements with individual members of the
UN for the provision of armed forces necessary to maintain international security and to

2 "International Peace and Security." Worldmark Encyclopedia of Nations. . Retrieved June 27, 2019 from

determine how many members shall participate in any collective action undertaken (Articles

The General Assembly, on the other hand, is empowered only to consider and make
recommendations, either to the Security Council or to particular states, on matters pertaining
to peace and security. Moreover, under Articles 11 and 12, it may discuss but may not make
actual recommendations on any special dispute between nations that is currently under
consideration by the Security Council. However, though the Assembly is not expressly
empowered to take action, neither is it expressly prohibited from doing so. In the only charter
provision touching on the subject, paragraph 2 of Article 11—which is the focus of
conflicting interpretation in the long-standing constitutional controversy on the financing of
certain General Assembly-sponsored peacekeeping operations—the actual wording is as
follows: "Any such question [of international peace and security] on which action is
necessary shall be referred to the Security Council by the General Assembly either before or
after discussion."

ii) Bringing A Dispute Or Serious Situation Before The UN.

A dispute may be brought before the UN in a variety of ways specified in the charter without
order of preference. One or more of the disputing parties may bring the matter before the
Security Council voluntarily, or the council itself may choose to exercise its constitutional
right to investigate a dispute at its own discretion; or any UN member, whether or not it is
involved in the dispute, may propose the matter for discussion by the General Assembly; or a
non-UN member that is a party to the dispute may under certain conditions bring it to the
attention of the General Assembly; or the Security Council may ask the General Assembly to
discuss the matter.

Article 33 enjoins UN members "first of all" to seek a solution to their differences on their
own initiative (though if they fail to take this initiative, the Security Council is empowered to
call upon them to do so). Only after their efforts to achieve a peaceful settlement have proved
fruitless are the disputing parties obliged by the charter to refer the matter to the Security

Also, Article 52 states that nothing in the charter "precludes the existence of regional
arrangements or agencies for dealing with such matters relating to the maintenance of
international peace and security as are appropriate for regional action" and that members
participating in such regional arrangements or agencies "shall make every effort to achieve
pacific settlement of local disputes through such regional arrangements or by such regional
agencies before referring them to the Security Council."

4.2.2. Political Background To The UN's Peacekeeping Action3

The UN's efforts to preserve international peace and security are the most contentious aspect of
its entire work, because of the inherently political nature of its role and the fact that both the
Security Council and the General Assembly are essentially political bodies, not courts of law that
apportion blame and impartially hand down judgments drawn from a set of established legal
codes. Their task in disputes brought before them is to find a compromise solution that is at once
satisfactory to all parties, based on the political realities of the world situation and consistent
with the principles of the charter. In this way, each local dispute brought before the UN
automatically becomes a dispute involving the entire membership, as nations express differing
views on the appropriate action to be taken by consensus of the membership.

The involvement of the general membership in all disputes is precisely what the founders of the
UN intended—as a means of ensuring collective international responsibility for political
solutions that are both just and realistic. However, in order to provide a counterweight to the
unavoidable taking of sides, they established the principle of unanimity among the great powers
by bestowing the right of veto on the permanent members of the Security Council.

The workability of this principle in practice presupposed a basic measure of cooperation among
the great powers. As events turned out, however, unanimity among the great powers proved to be
a chimera. Within a year of the signing of the charter, the world was in the throes of the cold
war, and the United States and USSR were engaged in a power struggle. The effects of this

3 "International Peace and Security." Worldmark Encyclopedia of Nations. . Retrieved June 27, 2019 from

unexpected political development on the UN's work in maintaining international peace and
security were immediate and devastating. Each dispute between the smaller nations that came
before the UN was subsumed under the developing power struggle between the giants. As a
result, between 1945 and 1990, the Security Council was deadlocked again and again by 279
vetoes. Furthermore, the charter requirements for agreement on the provision of armed forces for
the UN could not be met.

Whereas the USSR looked to the Security Council and the veto as its power instrument in the
UN, the United States looked to the support of the majority vote in the General Assembly. In
order to circumvent the Soviet veto in the Security Council, and being at that time confident of
majority support for most of its substantive policy objectives, the United States spearheaded a
drive to turn the General Assembly into a body for action in periods of international crisis. This
drive culminated in the adoption in 1950 of the Uniting for Peace Resolution, which empowered
the General Assembly to undertake collective measures for maintaining or restoring peace when
the Security Council found itself unable to act in times of emergency (for the terms of the
resolution, see the chapter on the General Assembly). It was the United States, represented
by Secretary of State Dean Acheson that originated the proposal for the resolution. Although
some of the small nations expressed reservations about certain clauses, most of them were eager
to participate more fully in the UN's peace and security responsibilities.
Only India and Argentina abstained in the vote, and only the Soviet bloc voted against the
resolution, branding it as illegal and contrary to the charter.

At the end of the 1980s, the demise of the Soviet Union and the cold war dramatically changed
this state of affairs. Within a few short years the entire Soviet bloc was dissolved and a new era
of cooperation between the United States and the Russian Federation raised hopes that the
Security Council would begin to fulfill the function foreseen for it by the organization's founders.
However, the political vacuum created by the collapse of the East-West stalemate was followed
by an eruption of intransigent, deadly regional conflicts and civil wars, particularly in Africa
and Eastern Europe.

While 13 operations were established between 1948 and 1988, more than 40 new operations
have been authorized since 1988. At its peak in 1995, total deployment of UN military and

civilian personnel reached almost 70,000 from 77 countries. By the end of 1996, 16
peacekeeping operations were severely taxing the ability and political will of member states to
respond with personnel and financial contributions. And in 2006, the number of current
peacekeeping missions was holding steady at 15.

4.2.3. Functions Of UN For Keeping Peace And Security Among The Countries4
The different instruments of the UN's peace efforts come into play at different stages of conflict.
The boundaries however between conflict prevention, peacemaking, peacekeeping, peace
building and peace enforcement have become increasingly blurred. Peace operations are rarely
limited to one type of activity. Following are some different kind of functions which the UN

i) Conflict Prevention and Peacemaking
The United Nations uses the political tools of preventive diplomacy and mediation to help
nations prevent and resolve conflicts peacefully. United Nations envoys are dispatched to
areas of tension around the world to assist in defusing crises and brokering negotiated
settlements to conflicts.
The UN Secretary-General may exercise his or her "good offices" to facilitate the resolution
of the conflict -- steps taken publicly and in private, drawing upon his independence,
impartiality and integrity, to prevent international disputes from arising, escalating or
Civilian-led political missions are deployed to the field with mandates to encourage dialogue
and cooperation within and between nations, or to promote reconciliation and democratic
governance in societies rebuilding after civil wars.
The work of the United Nations to foster credible elections around the world also contributes
directly to its efforts to promote peace and prevent conflict. Underpinning the activities is the
conviction that political issues lie at the root of many conflicts, and thus political solutions
are required to resolve them.
ii) Peacekeeping

4 United Nations Information Service,
(Retrieved from:

UN peacekeeping operations used to be deployed to support the implementation of inter-state
ceasefires or peace agreements, such as the first peacekeeping mission, the United Nations
Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO), set up in 1945 to monitor an Armistice
Agreement between Israel and its Arab neighbors, or the UN mission on the Golan
Heights UNDOF). Today, they are often also required to play an active role in intra-state
peacemaking efforts and get involved in peace building activities (complex multidimensional
peacekeeping including military, police and civilian components, e.g. the UN mission in
South Sudan UNMISS). These changes in the role of UN peacekeeping have been reflected
in the policy reform documents of the Department of Peacekeeping Operations (Brahimi
Report, Capstone Doctrine, New Horizons)
Today's multidimensional peacekeeping operations facilitate the political process, protect
civilians, assist in the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of former combatants;
support the organization of elections, protect and promote human rights and assist in
restoring the rule of law.
UN Peacekeeping is guided by three basic principles:
• Consent of the parties;
• Impartiality;
• Non-use of force except in self-defense and defense of the mandate.
UN peacekeeping operations may use force to defend themselves, their mandate, and
civilians, particularly in situations where the state is unable to provide security and maintain
public order.
iii) Peace building
The experience of the past has also led the United Nations to focus as never before on peace
building - efforts to reduce a country's risk of lapsing or relapsing into conflict by
strengthening national capacities for conflict management, and to lay the foundations for
sustainable peace and development.
Building lasting peace in war-torn societies is among the most daunting of challenges for
global peace and security. The United Nations established the Peace building Commission in
2005 to better anticipate and respond to the challenges of peace building.
iv) Disarmament

In 2010, world military expenditures exceeded some 1.5 trillion US dollars. The need for a
culture of peace and for significant arms reduction worldwide has never been greater. This
applies to all classes of weapons from nuclear weapons to conventional firearms and
Since the birth of the United Nations, the goals of multilateral disarmament and arms
limitation have been deemed central to the maintenance of international peace and security.
These goals range from reducing and eventually eliminating nuclear weapons, destroying
chemical weapons and strengthening the prohibition against biological weapons, to halting
the proliferation of landmines, small arms and light weapons.
These efforts are supported by a number of key UN instruments. The Treaty on the Non-
Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), the most universal of all multilateral disarmament
treaties, came into force in 1970. The Chemical Weapons Convention entered into force in
1997, the Biological Weapons Convention in 1975. The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban
Treaty was adopted in 1996, however it has not yet entered into force. The 1997 Mine-Ban
Convention came into force in 1999.
v) Women, peace and security
While women remain a minority of combatants and perpetrators of war, they increasingly
suffer the greatest harm. The UN Security Council recognized that including women and
gender perspectives in decision-making can strengthen prospects for sustainable peace with
the unanimous adoption of resolution 1325 on women, peace and security. The landmark
resolution specifically addresses the situation of women in armed conflict and calls for their
participation at all levels of decision-making on conflict resolution and peace building.
vi) Counter Terrorism
Countering the scourge of terrorism is in the interest of all nations and the issue has been on
the agenda of the United Nations for decades. Almost no week goes by without an act of
terrorism taking place somewhere in the world, indiscriminately affecting innocent people
who just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Eighteen universal instruments (fourteen instruments and four amendments) against
international terrorism have been elaborated within the framework of the United Nations
system relating to specific terrorist activities.

A global strategy to counter terrorism was agreed in September 2006 which marks the first
time that all Member States of the United Nations have agreed to a common strategic and
operational framework to fight terrorism. The Strategy forms a basis for a concrete plan of
action: to address the conditions conducive to the spread of terrorism; to prevent and combat
terrorism; to take measures to build state capacity to fight terrorism; to strengthen the role of
the United Nations in combating terrorism; and to ensure the respect of human rights while
countering terrorism.
vii) Organized Crime
Transnational organized crime takes many forms from trafficking in drugs, firearms and even
people to money laundering and corruption. Today organized crime has diversified, gone
global and reached macro-economic proportions, so that it constitutes a threat to peace and
The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) is the guardian of the United
Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (Organized Crime Convention)
and the three supplementary Protocols -on Trafficking in Persons, Smuggling of Migrants
and Trafficking of Firearms.

4.2.4. The Cost of Waging Peace5

In Renewing the United Nations System (Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation, 1994), co-authors
Brian Urquhart and Erskine Childers (former senior adviser to the UN Director General for
Development and International Cooperation) cite the following figures: "By early 1993 the UN
was deploying four times the number of troops, 70 times more police and over 100 times the
number of civilian personnel as in 1987, at nearly 10 times the annual cost. As of 30 April 1994
the UN had contributions from 66 countries of 65,838 troops, 2,400 military observers, and
1,307 civilian and police personnel, with possible further deployments (and costs) evolving
almost weekly relative to situations like those in Haiti, Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia. The

5 "International Peace and Security." Worldmark Encyclopedia of Nations. . Retrieved June 27, 2019 from

projected costs of peace-keeping rose from some us$ 600 million in 1991 to an estimated us$ 2.3
billion for 1993."

In fact, in May 1994, the Secretary-General was unable to obtain 5,500 troops from African
nations to protect refugees and international aid workers caught in the bloody Rwandan civil
war. He attributed this to donor fatigue among the countries that frequently assign troops to UN

As of 28 February 2006, more than 1 million soldiers, police officers, and civilians had served
under the UN flag since the establishment of the first peacekeeping mission in 1948. As of 28
February 2006, 107 countries were contributing a total of some 72,800 uniformed personnel
(military and police). There were also about 5,300 international civilian personnel, 1,600 UN
volunteers and more than 10,000 local civilian staff.

As the world has increasingly turned to the UN to deal with conflicts, the cost of peacekeeping
has risen accordingly. The annual approved resources for all peacekeeping operations from 1
July 2005 to 30 June 2006 amounted to about us$ 5.03 billion. The estimated total cost of UN
peacekeeping operations from 1948 to 30 June 2006 was approximately $41.04 billion.
However, global military expenditures in the mid-2000s amounted to around us$ 1 trillion per
year. Of course, these monetary figures do not adequately take into account the tragic price paid
in human death and suffering during war.

Most UN peacekeeping operations are not financed from the organization's regular budget, but
from special accounts established by the organization to fund each particular operation. Each
member is then assessed for a share of the mission's estimated cost. Special assessments for
peacekeeping are divided into three categories. The five permanent members of the Security
Council pay about 22 percent more than the regular scale of assessments because of their greater
influence over Security Council decisions (by virtue of holding the power of veto). Other
developed industrial states pay the same share for peacekeeping as they pay for the regular
budget. Wealthier developing countries pay one-fift h of their regular budget share for
peacekeeping. The poorest nations (least developed countries, or LDCs) pay one-tenth of their
regular share. There are certain inequities to this arrangement. For example, a number of
"developing" states with per capita GNPs of $5,000 or more still are assessed only one-fift h of

their regular budget assessment for peacekeeping (which have included the United Arab
Emirates, Kuwait, Qatar, Brunei, Singapore, Bahamas, Israel, Cyprus, Barbados, Bahrain, Saudi
Arabia, Malta, Greece, Libya, and Oman).

Since 1945, over 130 nations have contributed personnel at various times; 107 were providing
peacekeepers as of 28 February 2006. As of 31 December 2005, the top 10 contributors of
personnel to ongoing peacekeeping missions were Bangladesh, Pakistan, India, Jordan, Nepal,
Ethiopia, Ghana, Uruguay, Nigeria, and South Africa. The small island nation of Fiji has taken
part in virtually every UN peacekeeping operation, as has Canada.

For the above reasons, the Secretary-General suggested in his Agenda for Peace that
contributions to UN peacekeeping operations be financed from defense budgets, rather than from
foreign affairs budgets. Other innovative proposals in the agenda included obtaining standing
commitments from member states as to the numbers and kinds of skilled personnel they can offer
the United Nations as new operations arise; new arrangements for training peacekeeping
personnel, including indispensable civilian and police staff; stockpiling basic peacekeeping
equipment (vehicles, communications equipment, generators, etc.); and air and sea lift capacity
to be provided by member states either free of cost or at lower than commercial rates.


4.3.1. The Middle East: Establishment Of Israel.

In April 1947, the General Assembly, at a special session, established a Special Committee
on Palestine to make recommendations for the future status of the British mandate. The resulting
partition plan, which divided Palestine into an Arab and a Jewish state, with an international
regime for the city of Jerusalem, was adopted by the General Assembly in November of the same
year. A UN Palestine Commission was established to carry out the recommendations, and the
Security Council was requested to implement the plan. The date for termination of the British

6 "International Peace and Security." Worldmark Encyclopedia of Nations. . Retrieved July 01, 2019 from

mandate and withdrawal of British troops was 1 August 1948. However, violent fighting broke
out between the Arab nations and the Jewish community in Palestine. The Security Council
thereupon established a Truce Commission consisting of Belgium, France, and the United States,
while the General Assembly authorized a UN Mediator for Palestine to replace the Palestine

Through the UN mediator, Count Folke Bernadotte, the Security Council then established a UN
Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO) of military observers from different countries, with
headquarters in Jerusalem, and assigned it the task of patrolling the frontiers.

Fighting continued, however, and Count Bernadotte was assassinated in September 1948.
During its regular session in the fall of 1948, the General Assembly established a three-member
Conciliation Commission (France, Turkey, and the United States) to negotiate a settlement and
also established the UN Relief for Palestine Refugees (later replaced by UNRWA). Following
negotiations with the acting UN mediator, Ralph Bunche, in the first half of 1949, Israel, Egypt,
Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria signed armistice agreements. The agreements provided for mixed
armistice commissions to check on their implementation. UNTSO continued in operation to
observe the cease-fire and is still in existence, investigating complaints of armistice violations
and reporting to the Security Council. The Conciliation Commission also continues to function,
still trying to fulfill its mandate from the General Assembly to assist the parties concerned to
negotiate a final settlement of all issues.

4.3.2. The Suez Crisis.

In July 1956, Egypt nationalized the Suez Canal. In September, after Egypt's rejection of
the London Conference plan for international control of the canal, France and the United
Kingdom informed the Security Council that Egypt's attitude was endangering the peace. Israel
invaded Egypt's Gaza Strip the following month, and a Security Council resolution calling for a
cease-fire and the withdrawal of Israeli troops was vetoed by France and the United Kingdom.
France and the United Kingdom began armed intervention in the area, and thereafter the situation
was handled exclusively by the General Assembly under the Uniting for Peace Resolution.

In November 1956, the General Assembly established the UN Emergency Force (UNEF) to
secure and supervise cessation of hostilities. Since Israel would not permit UNEF contingents on
territory under its control, the force was stationed on the Egyptian side of the demarcation line.
Withdrawal of British and French forces was completed by December 1956 and of Israeli forces
by March 1957. The canal was cleared by April of the same year, and Egypt declared it open to
international traffic (Israeli ships were barred, however).

4.3.3. The Lebanon.

On 15 March 1978, following a Palestinian commando raid in Israel, Israeli forces invaded
Southern Lebanon. On 19 March, the Security Council called on Israel to cease its military
action against Lebanese territory and decided to establish a UN Interim Force in Lebanon
(UNIFIL) to confirm the withdrawal of Israeli forces and assist the Lebanese government in
ensuring the return of its effective authority in the area.

The mandate of the 6,000-man UNIFIL has been extended by the Security Council since then.
Perhaps its greatest crisis occurred on the morning of 6 June 1982, when Israeli forces,
comprising two mechanized divisions with air and naval support, moved into Lebanese territory,
bypassing positions occupied by UNIFIL. The Israeli invasion was followed by a few days of
intensive exchanges of fire with PLO and Syrian forces and by Israeli air attacks on targets in the
Beirut area. In subsequent days and weeks, the Security Council met numerous times to demand
a cease-fire, withdrawal of Israeli forces, and respect for the rights of the civilian population.

UNIFIL's mandate was enlarged to extend protection and humanitarian assistance to the
population of the area; an international survey mission was established to assess the situation on
the spot; a UN observer group was deployed in and around Beirut to ensure that a cease-fire was
fully observed by all concerned; and, at Lebanon's request, a 4,000-man multinational force,
composed of contingents from France, Italy, and the United States (and later the United
Kingdom), was deployed in the Beirut area. The force was withdrawn in 1984.

4.3.4. The Question of Palestinian Rights.

Concurrently with its consideration of the situation in the Middle East and of the role of
peacekeeping forces in the region, the UN has been concerned with the question of Palestinian
rights. In 1968, the General Assembly established the Special Committee to Investigate Israeli
Practices Affecting the Human Rights of the Population of the Occupied Territories, which
reports annually to it, and in 1974, it reaffirmed "the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people"
to unhindered self-determination, national independence, and sovereignty. The General
Assembly recognized the Palestinian people as a principal party in the establishment of a just and
durable peace in the Middle East, and it invited the PLO to participate as an observer in its work
and in UN conferences.

In 1975, the General Assembly established the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable
Rights of the Palestinian People and asked it to recommend a program for the implementation of
those rights. The committee recommended that a timetable be established by the Security
Council for the complete withdrawal of Israeli forces from the areas occupied in 1967. The
evacuated areas, with all properties and services intact, would be taken over by the UN, which,
with the cooperation of the League of Arab States, would subsequently hand them over to the
PLO as the representative of the Palestinian people. The General Assembly has endorsed the
committee's recommendations at successive sessions since 1976, but the Security Council has
not acted on them.

An International Conference on the Question of Palestine, held in Geneva in the summer of
1983, adopted a declaration on Palestine and a program of action for the achievement of
Palestinian rights, which was later endorsed by the General Assembly. The conference also
called for the convening of an international conference on the Middle East, a proposal which the
General Assembly endorsed.

At its 1987 session, the General Assembly reaffirmed its conviction that "the question of
Palestine is the core of the conflict in the Middle East and that no comprehensive, just and lasting
peace in the region will be achieved without the full exercise by the Palestinian people of its
inalienable national rights and the immediate, unconditional and total withdrawal of Israel from
all the Palestinian and other Arab occupied territories."

4.3.5. The Kashmir

Kashmir (officially, Jammu and Kashmir) was originally one of the princely states of British
India. Under the partition plan and the Indian Independence Act of 1947, it became free to
accede to either India or Pakistan, on both of which it borders. On 1 January 1948, India reported
to the Security Council that tribesmen were invading Kashmir with the active assistance of
Pakistan. After the invasion had begun, the Maharajah of Kashmir had requested accession to
India and India had accepted on the understanding that, once normal conditions were restored,
the question of accession would be settled by a plebiscite. Pakistan declared that Kashmir's
accession to India was illegal.

The Security Council, after asking the parties to mediate, called for withdrawal of Pakistani
nationals, reduction of Indian forces, and arrangement of a plebiscite on Kashmir's accession to
India. A UN Commission for India and Pakistan (UNCIP) was sent to mediate in July 1948. By
1949, UNCIP had affected a cease-fire and was able to state that principles on a plebiscite had
been accepted by both governments. In July 1949, agreement was reached on a cease-fire line,
and UNCIP appointed a group of military observers to watch for violations. However, it was
unable to reach agreement on terms for the demilitarization of Kashmir prior to a plebiscite.

In March 1951, after several attempts at further negotiation had failed, the Security Council
decided to continue the observer group—now called the UN Military Observer Group in India
and Pakistan (UNMOGIP)—to supervise the cease-fire within Kashmir itself. Despite continued
mediation, the differences between the parties remained. The Security Council repeatedly
considered the matter without achieving appreciable progress.

In August 1965 there was a sudden outbreak of serious hostilities. UNMOGIP reported clashes
between the regular armed forces of both India and Pakistan, and fighting continued into
September, although the Security Council had twice called for a cease-fire. Following a report
that fighting had spread to the international border between India and West Pakistan, the council,
on September 20, requested that both sides issue orders for a cease-fire within two days and
withdraw their forces to their previously held positions. The cease-fire was accepted by both
states, but continuous complaints of violations were made by each side. Accordingly, the Council

requested Secretary-General U Thant to increase the size of UNMOGIP and to establish the UN
India-Pakistan Observation Mission (UNIPOM) on the India-West Pakistan border.

In 1971, another conflict between the two countries broke out, this time in connection with the
civil strife in East Pakistan, which later became the independent state of Bangladesh. As nearly
10 million refugees streamed into neighboring India, tension increased in the subcontinent.

U Thant conveyed his serious concern to the president of Pakistan and the prime minister of
India and, with the consent of the host governments, set up two large-scale humanitarian
programs. One of these, with the UN high commissioner for refugees as the focal point, was for
the relief of the refugees in India. The other was for assistance to the distressed population in
East Pakistan. U Thant's actions were subsequently unanimously approved by the General

On 20 July 1971, the Secretary-General drew the attention of the president of the Security
Council to the steady deterioration of the situation in the region, which he described as a
potential threat to peace and security. He noted that humanitarian, economic, and political
problems were involved, and he indicated that the UN should play a more forthright role to avert
further deterioration. In October of that year, he offered his good offices to the governments of
India and Pakistan, but India declined. Clashes broke out between the two countries, and on 3
December, U Thant notified the Security Council under Article 99 of the charter that the
situation in the region constituted a threat to international peace and security.

After a cease-fire had put an end to the fighting on 17 December 1971, the Security Council
adopted a resolution demanding the strict observance of the cease-fire until withdrawal of all
armed forces to their previous positions should take place. The council also called for
international assistance to relieve the suffering and for the appointment of a special UN
representative to lend his good offices for the solution of humanitarian problems. During 1972,
the refugees, with UN assistance, returned to their homeland. The UN relief operation helped
pave the way for the rehabilitation of the shattered economy of Bangladesh, which became a
member of the UN in 1974.

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