In the non-permissive environments where they are often deployed, UN peace operations need to be increasingly creative to implement their mandate to protect civilians. They face particularly acute challenges in contexts marked by violent extremism, such as Mali, where attacks by terrorist groups have greatly constrained the capacity of peacekeepers to protect local populations.
This paper explores the operational challenges that the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) faces in implementing its protection mandate. It analyzes protection threats related to violent extremism in Mali and explores the protection strategy, tools, and activities developed by the UN mission to address those threats. It highlights some of the practical constraints of operating in a hostile environment and added complications related to the mission’s proximity to non-UN counterterrorism forces.
To read the report, Protecting Civilians in the Context of Violent Extremism: The Dilemmas of UN Peacekeeping in Mali, please follow the link.