For over a decade the international community has focused extensively on the protection of peacekeepers. Undoubtedly in many circumstances, and especially in non-international armed conflicts, attacks on peacekeepers constitute an unlawful method of warfare. Parties to a conflict use such illicit conduct to achieve a military or political advantage. In Sierra Leone the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) attacked peacekeepers in order to show their opposition to the Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration (DDR) programs; in Sudan the rebels attacked the African Union Mission in Sudan (AMIS) camp because they thought it provided the government with some intelligence; in the former Yugoslavia peace keepers were taken hostage in response to the NATO bombing campaign. These situations represent only a few examples of the many instances resulting in attacks on peacekeepers. The UN suffers image and communication problems and such problems are shared by the peacekeepers.
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