Edited by Jonathan Wilkenfeld, Kyle Beardsley and David Quinn
Chapter 15: Mediator identity in intrastate African crises
This chapter focuses on the mediation of violent, ethnicity-based intrastate crises in Africa for the period 1990–2005. Mediators are classified into three categories: Western, regional, and domestic. Mediators are assessed on their relative impact in terms of four mechanisms through which mediators can influence the outcomes of crises: (1) leverage, (2) decision-making processes, (3) proximity to the disputing parties, and (4) interest/stake in the crisis. The impact of mediation is assessed in terms of short-term crisis management and long-term conflict resolution. Finally, the chapter examines the relative impact of three styles of mediation: manipulation, formulation, and facilitation. Mediation is found to be effective in achieving short-term conflict management, particularly when Western mediators are involved and they employ manipulative techniques. Mediation was found to be generally ineffective in achieving long-term conflict resolution, although the inclusion of domestic mediators alongside other mediators shows some promise. The United Nations was found to be particularly ineffective, appearing to actually have a negative effect on both crisis management and conflict resolution.
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