‘Operation Artemis’: The efficiency of EU peacekeeping in The Congo

This essays attempts to critically assess the efficiency of ‘Operation Artemis’, a peacekeeping mission of the European Union in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). This mission, which was executed just a few months after the beginning of the Iraq war in 2003, was the response of the European Union to the Civil war in the DRC, which could not be controlled by international peacekeepers. ‘Operation Artemis’ was the very first EU-led peacekeeping force in combat and attempted to restore order and peace in the Ituri province for a mandate of three months.  In the first part, I will focus on the mission itself. Firstly, the background of the concerned area and the mission will be explained, including the challenges that led the United Nations Security Council to delegate this mandate to ‘Operation Artemis’. This essay will also investigate why the European Union accepted the responsibility of this mandate. The tasks of this mandate will be described thereafter. This is followed by the diplomatic and military preparations of the mission.  Finally, the actual development of the mission will be described and what results it gathered. In the second part, the mission will be evaluated according to its individual strengths and weaknesses, including the overall assessment.  Achievements of the mission will be complemented with recommendations for future missions. In evaluating this mission, especially in the context of the Iraq War, it will also assess in a broader context, if the European Union is able to be an effective international actor. This essay concludes that Operation Artemis illustrates that the EU has the capabilities to successfully execute mandates, if the EU member states are willing and agree upon foreign policy actions. It also underlines that the point of liberalism that democratic states can cooperate effectively with each other institutionally, which is increasingly important in times of globalization which forces states increasingly to cooperate due to several factors, which in turn will be explained at the very end of this essay.

Background and Preparations of ARTEMIS

The 1994 Genocide of Tutsis in Rwanda led to a civil war which resulted in Hutu refugees, fearing revenge of Tutsis, crossing into Zaire. The counterattack of Hutu forces into Rwanda from Zaire in turn resulted in the Rwandan invasion of Zaire, where Zairean opposition leader Kabila, who was supported by Uganda and Rwanda militarily, replaced Mobutu as head of Zaire in 1997 in the First Congo War. After having renamed Zaire in “Democratic Republic of Congo” (DRC), the Second Congo War broke out after Kabila refused his former allies Uganda and Rwanda the spoils of the First Congo War. Their invasion into the Eastern DRC prompted invasions of Angola, Namibia and Zimbabwe in 1998 on behalf of Kabila’s government. In the absence of national authority, mass killings, rape, torture, displacement, mutilation and cannibalism in Ituri were brought to the attention of the international community by the United Nations and non-governmental organizations.

In 1999, the UN Security Council authorized 90 peacekeepers to assist in promoting the Lusaka peace agreement that was reached among most of the involved six countries and made provision for an interim authority to be established in Ituri (Hendrickson et al, 2007). Yet violence continued and the peace agreement widely disregarded, while fighting and massacres continued. Following the six-day war between Rwanda and Uganda, in 2000 the UNSC Resolution 1291 approved deployment, under Chapter VII of the UN Chart, sending 5,537 peacekeepers from the United Nations into Congo, called MONUC to monitor implementations of ceasefire (UNBPU, 2004).

When MONUC deployed its first contingent in a very limited manner with one senior political advisor, one political officer, one civil affairs officer and one humanitarian officer to the rebel-held East in 2001, finally an accord was signed between Presidents Kabila and Kagame of Rwanda in 2002 to agree the withdrawal of troops from the DRC after the former addressed Rwanda’s security concerns, which was followed by the withdrawal of Angolan, Namibian and Zimbabwean troops in October 2002, allied to DRC government. The European Union had previously called for a resolution to end the violence in Ituri in December 2002. The Security Council demanded firmly the withdrawal of Ugandan forces from Ituri. Uganda agreed in 2003, but withdrew in a chaotic fashion in May 2003. This vacuum was not filled and was followed by militia from the Lendu and Hema tribes fighting each other in Ituri’s regional capital, Bunia, over control of land and resources, which resulted in a humanitarian disaster. United Nations investigators reported massacres from February 2003, while some 500 000 to 600 000 people were displaced throughout the region (UNDPK, 2004). The humanitarian conditions deteriorated rapidly, and the violence resulted in the creation of approximately 7000 refugees (Hendrickson et al, 2007). The streets beyond the UN compounds fell under the control of rival militias, whose violent attacks on each other’s civilians made any kind of humanitarian and other assistance to the population in need impossible. Bunia was plagued by rival militiamen openly carrying small arms. UNBPU (2004) criticizes that this was made worse by the fact that a number of military, political and logistical difficulties were amplified by the inadequate resources such as low troop ceilings. For instance, at the time of the 2003 Ituri crisis, MONUC’s troop strength was under half of its authorized levels. The 700 UN peacekeepers, mostly from Uruguay, who were deployed on April 23rd near Bunia, did not have the military skills necessary to prevent the violence. It could only protect UN personnel and lacked the capacity to do much more. Bunia was overrun by violence, while MONUC headquarters and personnel were directly attacked (UNBPU, 2004). UNBPU (2004) maintains that” in an attempt to escape the ensuing violence, thousands of civilians either abandoned the town or collected around MONUC sector 2 Headquarters and the airport where the Uruguayan battalion had established its base”.

Since the deployment of better equipped MONUC force would not be possible before the end of July 2003, leaving “a dangerous interim gap in this highly volatile area” (UNBPU, 2004), the Secretary-General addresses on the 15th May 2003 a letter to the President of the Security Council, in which the Secretary-General called for “the rapid deployment to Bunia of a highly trained and well-equipped multinational force, under the lead of a Member State, to provide security at the airport as well as to other vital installations in the town and to protect the civilian population” (UNBPU, 2004).  UN General Secretary Kofi Annan specifically appealed to Javier Solana to build support among EU defence ministers, who as former NATO General Secretary, then Spanish Foreign minister and president of the European Council of Ministers, to promote collective values and shared norms regarding African strategic interests for the EU.  At a meeting of the EU defence ministers in May 2003, Solana presented Annan’s request on May 19th to the meeting of EU defence ministers and drafted a reaction to Annan from the EU, while he sent his assistant, Aldo Ajello, to initiate diplomatic overtures with Uganda, Rwanda, and the DRC to withdraw, while briefing the UN Security Council (Hendrickson et al, 2007). Following a call to President Jacques Chirac by the Secretary-General, France indicated its readiness to deploy a force to Bunia. On 30 May 2003, the Security Council authorized the deployment.

Ozveri (2011) argues that the assassination of two UN military observers on 30th May 2003 made the situation in Bunia spiral out of control and the plight of the civilians who sought refuge around the MONUC compound and the airport eventually led to the deployment of the IEMF (Interim Emergency Multinational Force) under the leadership of France. The UN SC Resolution 1484 authorized on the 30th May 2003 a mandate for an emergency international force for the deployment until 1 September 2003 of an Interim Emergency Multinational Force in Bunia to contribute to the stabilisation of the security conditions” (Goris et al, 2004) and the improvement of the humanitarian situation in Bunia, by ensuring the protection of the airport and internally displaced refugees in the camps in Bunia,  and if required, of the civilian population, United Nations personnel and of humanitarian agencies in the town (UNDPK, 2004).


France declared it willingness and readiness to deploy a French-led Interim Emergency Multinational Force, known as “Operation Artemis”, until MONUC reinforcements could take over in September 2003. France set up operation “Mamba” and on 5 June the EU adopted a “joint-action on the European Union military operation in the Democratic Republic of Congo” (Goris et al, 2004). The European Union was already heavily involved in the region through its ECHO (European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid Office) humanitarian aid programme and was therefore well placed to carry out such a peacekeeping operation (UNDPK, 2004). France had already issued a joint declaration to African leaders with the UK at La Tourquet in February for more human rights, democracy, conflict prevention and peace in Africa. France, historically the most aggressive advocate for a separate EU military  capability, wanted to show only two months after Operation Iraqi Freedom that the EU could also act without NATO independently with military capabilities and cooperation and act as a balancer to the US (Hendrickson et al, 2007). France attempted to gain additional military and diplomatic support from other states. Artemis, as the first autonomous EU-led operation, outside Europe, should also emphasize the EU’s ambitions for a stronger voice in security affairs remains (Hendrickson et al., 2007). Goris et al (2004) maintain that “the current explosive situation in many African states provides a breeding ground for terrorism and extremism. Without good governance and adequate security forces or intelligence, extremist groups and factions are free to create and expand their networks and develop into terrorist cells. One such example is the al-Qa’ida attack in Mombasa, Kenya, in November 2002, which claimed 13 lives, whilst there is concern that numerous al-Qa’ida cells may be developing or operating in “troubled” African states” “, and therefore provide threats to the future of European security.

Duke (2008) maintains the fact that France was willing to assume the bulk of the burdens in an operation involving a modest number of personnel or resources limited time frame, helped other EU states to join. Codenamed Artemis was then organized under French command and composed of 1850 troops from 9 countries, mainly France (CEU, 2007). French General Jean-Paul Thonier was named Artemis force commander in Bunia, where nine troops were deployed on 20th May 2003 in Bunia to assess the ground conditions and to initiate preparations to secure the airport of Bunia, while the operational commander was French General Bruno Neveux, who led from his headquarters in Paris. France, which provided 1000 of these troops with main air strike capabilities, and Sweden (approx. 80) were the only participants who provided combat troops in Bunia. The UK (90 personnel in Bunia), Belgium (48 personnel in Uganda) and Germany (350 personnel in Uganda) provided mainly engineers, medics and staff officers for logistical and medical support (Hendrickson et al, 2007). The other European states like Austria, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, The Netherlands, Portugal, and Spain provided few personnel for assistance at the Headquarters in Paris (Hendrickson et al., 2007). At its peak, Operation Artemis involved the deployment of a total of 2060 personnel from 18 countries, 12 of them EU member states (Goris et al., 2004). UNDPK (2004) added that three non-European nations, South Africa, Canada and Brazil, have joined forces with the EU in providing troops for this operation.

On 5th June 2003 the Council Joint Action 2003/423/CFSP was planned and on 12th June 2003 the Council Decision 2003/432/CFSP launched the military operation of the European Union in the Democratic Republic of Congo according to the Peacekeeping Best Practices Unit (2004), which maintains that the EU has been involved in the efforts towards a peaceful settlement of the conflict in the DRC since 1996.

Mandate

The mandate was to stabilise Bunia to protect civilians under imminent threat of physical violence, restore the security to the town and the airport, establishing a weapons-free zone inside the town and increase humanitarian conditions until September 2003, when the reinforcement of the UN peacekeeping Mission, known as MONUC, was supposed to arrive (UNDPK, 2004). Just under half of the forces were at the force headquarters in Entebbe, Uganda around 300 km away. The French air force supported the mission with reconnaissance, air support and surveillance in Ndjamena and Entebbe with including Mirage fighters. MONUC was operating two or three regular flights a day out of the airport, when the first IEMF plane landed. According to the UNBPU (2004), on 6th June 2003, the first troops of the IEMF were deployed to Bunia, followed shortly by engineers to help maintain the very poor airfield for the numerous strategic and tactical airlifts of personnel and equipment with each IEMF company having a doctor and a field level unit hospital with surgical capacity in Bunia. According to UNDPK (2004) “the only real access to Ituri’s main town was a small, rough and ready airstrip, accessible only by C130 Hercules or C160 Transall tactical transport aircraft, where European effort has been concentrated on the transport by air to Entebbe and forces on Bunia.”

CEU (2007) argued that ECHO initiated a clear and informal communication mechanism between “Operation Artemis” and the humanitarian community along the Guidelines on Military, Civil and Defence Assets (MCDA) to respect the mandate and the role of humanitarian and military operators and to divide the roles regarding execution of activities of military and humanitarian aid.  Establishing new partnerships in the district periphery, emergency stocks and regular ECHO Flight services were part of this agreement.

On 6 June 2003, IEMF forces took up position and secured Bunia airfield without any problems. From the start, the operation commander took a firm stance against the militia that were terrorising the local civilian population. General Thonier advised his men to “hit back hard, the first chance you get” (Goris et al, 2004). The UNBPU (2004) argues that “the IEMF used the threat or the use of force in a convincing manner, managing quickly to establish its presence and stabilize the area of its deployment”, by limiting itself initially to declaring the town and a 10km area around into a “weapons-invisible” zone, which meant that it confiscated weapons from people who openly carried weapons, but without disarming militia groups. UNBPU (2004) explained that “weapons disappeared from the streets but were not taken out of circulation. Beyond the town, the rival groups continued to fight and the IEMF was often caught in the middle.”

By the time “Artemis” was properly launched on 12 June 2003 in the north-eastern Ituri province of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), there had been approximately 430 deaths (Goris et al, 2004). The mission’s European “strategic” HQ in Paris was fully operational from 16 June.  The Europeans retaliated after every provocation or attack by the militia and IEMF forces killed on the 16th June by IEMF several militiamen when returning fire (Goris et al, 2004). Some skirmishes started against Lendu forces and the UPC on June 14th, which killed another twenty militiamen. Having made it clear to the militias that IEMF forces would use force and by weakening the military capabilities of the militias through monitoring of airfields and cutting off military supplies from abroad, the militias retreated. The European troops gradually secured Bunia and brought an end to the violence and. On 21 June, it forced the 2 500-strong UCP rebels to cease control of the area to the Artemis, which extended their control to the immediate surroundings (Goris et al, 2004). On 8th July 2003, Bunia was declared “a weapon-free town”, while barring all accesses and with patrols. On 11 July, following provocations, 300 European troops moved into the Hema militia camp near Bunia. Heavy weaponry was seized, which made the UCP withdrew from the region (Goris et al, 2004).


Meanwhile, “on 28 July 2003, the Security Council resolution 1493 (UN SC, 2003) approved the significant expansion of MONUC to 10,800 personnel, including the deployment of a brigade to Ituri, composed of four battalions and support elements (4,800 military personnel) to take over from the IEMF and to expand its mandate from Bunia and its environment, as the situation permitted, to other parts of Ituri” (UNDPK, 2004). The UNBPU (2004) argues that in the first half of August, preparations for the withdrawal from Bunia were started, because the IEMF leadership was concerned that the expiration of the authorized mandate by the Security Council would on the day leave the forces without legal cover in the case if any incident would occur. This led the force to accelerate its withdrawal and seek an extension of the authorization by the Security Council until 15 September 2003 (UNBPU, 2004).

Due to the success of the IEMF to secure the area, political offices reopened and economic and social activities in Ituri resumed and the town population increased from only 40,000 inhabitants in Bunia before Artemis to 100,000 (UNBPU, 2004). The IEMF, which was initially sceptical that the period of deployment was not sufficient to secure the area, did not face significant difficulties.  Nevertheless, the IEMF asked the UN SC for an extension until September 7th 2003. From September 1st 2003, the IEMF gradually handed over all remaining tasks in Bunia in a well- planned and well–executed manner to the 5,000-strong MONUC-force from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal and Indonesia (Ozveri, 2011) and withdrew completely by 7 September 2003. On 25 September 2003 the support base in Entebe, Uganda ceased to function (UNBPU, 2004).

Evaluation

Operation Artemis was the first independent EU mission outside NATO, where its troops engaged in combat and through a successful military-civilian cooperation (Hendrickson et al, 2007).  EU diplomacy effectively obtained cooperation of neighbouring states prior to the deployment of the IEMF (CEU, 2007). The fact that Operation Artemis was also present in Uganda sent a positive message to Uganda as key actor to improve cooperation (UNBPU, 2004). CEU (2007) argues that the EU is thus acquiring greater credibility on the international stage and affirming its role as a political and military player in the settlement of international crises and conflicts, because the EU showed its ability to act toward a common foreign security policy to promote regional stability by helping to develop a safer world and carry out all the tasks set out in UN Security Council Resolution 1484 (Hendrickson et al., 2007). Solana himself referred to the “EU military progress” due to its ability to secure Bunia’s airport, to assist and protect the displaced persons located in the surrounding refugee camps (Hendrickson et al., 2007). It also allowed humanitarian assistance like the World Food Programme to get aid through to the local population and the refugees by restoring the security conditions necessary for NGOs and –through putting an end to the immediate crisis- ensured a return to normal working life, so that many people that had left moved back. Furthermore, it helped MONUC to build onto the safe foundations laid by Operation Artemis (UNBPU, 2004; UNDPK, 2004). Aldo Ajello, the EU special representative for Africa’s Great Lakes Region, called Operation Artemis a “big humanitarian, military and political success”, while the operation commander of Artemis, said the force “fulfilled its mission” by restoring security, helping people to return home and restart economic activity due to the determined attitude of the multinational force against aggressive armed groups in Bunia and its surrounding area (Hendrickson, 2007).

Success was partly due to the fact that the missions was narrowly defined (UNBPU; 2004) and due to the highly-skilled, flexible trained troops, which illustrates that missions require adequately trained, equipped and supported reserve forces, who are highly mobile and ready to be deployed rapidly in unpredictable environments. UNBPU (2004) proposes peacekeeping training that should consistently and clearly address the authority to use force in peacekeeping. Every deployment must be assessed in terms of capabilities and operations.

Also communication is vital. Operation Artemis demonstrated skill in fully integrating various European and non-European contingents including Canadians, South African and Brazilians within an operational framework through wide representation and shared responsibilities. During the mission, standardisation of communication and conducting joint training exercises improved communication even further (UNBPU, 2004). The UNDPK (2004) acknowledged that the “multi-nationalisation” at headquarters at times proved rather “chaotic”, despite being mainly from France. The French assessment team also did not visit Bunia after having visited before MONUC’s headquarter in Kinshasa. MONUC in Kinshasa was also not briefed by them and no direct communication between the operational headquarters of the IEMF and MONUC during the pre-deployment period was sustained. For instance, UNBPU (2004) admitted that MONUC was not warned of the landing of the first IEMF troops, because the IEMF leadership did not sufficiently trust the security information of MONUC due to lack of information of MONUC regarding movements of guerrilla fighters near the landing site. Also the UN was not present with a liaison officer at the operational headquarters of the IEMF with knowledge of the UN mission and area of deployment, particularly on the capacities and capabilities of potentially hostile forces.

Hence, the UNBPU (2004) suggests “an exchange of liaison officers at the headquarters/strategic level and at the operational level.” The UNBPU (2004) also suggests that all incoming contingents and commanders should be fully briefed by the leadership of the mission, especially during the transition from one international peacekeeping organization to another, so that the mission does not lose credibility, which was successful in the transition from IEMF and MONUC.  They also maintain that the EU could deploy strategic reserve forces for the UN. While pre-deployment liaison with MONUC could certainly have been better, the co-operation and working relationships between the IEMF, MONUC and the UN mission in Bunia, Kinshasa and Entebbe was excellent after the IEMF was on the ground. The UNBPU (2004) maintains that URUBATT (the Uruguayan peacekeepers) reported good cooperation with the IEMF, including the mutual exchange of information and coordination of operations, because radio networks were exchanged and cooperation in the use of airport was very efficient. Additionally, the fact that the IEMF forces were able to communicate with the local population facilitated improved cooperation and better intelligence, which was further enhanced by sophisticated communication technology such as the ability to intercept cellular telephone calls, excellent night-vision capabilities and effective use of satellite imagery to track movement of forces (UNBPU, 2004).

However, there were also shortcomings of the Union’s real capabilities and areas in which these were lacking. The highly multi-nationalised tactical and strategic air lift operated flawlessly, but the overreliance on the Franco-German built C160-Transall carrier aircraft for long distances illustrated European armies’ shortcomings in terms of strategic lift capability due to its limitations in terms of mass and lift capacity, which makes the number of round trips required high. This explains why a more rapid build-up of Artemis forces on the ground was not possible (UNDPK, 2004).  However, the new Airbus A400M military transport aircraft should undoubtedly bring about a vast improvement in the situation (UNBPU, 2004).

Indeed, UNBPU (2004) argued that “the tightly constrained life-span of the IEMF could have led to failure if circumstances had not permitted the rapid deployment of the Ituri Brigade.” Indeed, the strict limitation in terms of time and area of operations “merely pushed the problem of violent aggression against civilians beyond the environs of the town, where atrocities continued” (UNBPU, 2004).  In this regard, the IEMF acted intelligently, because it understood that its own security depended on securing the surrounding area.

However, it has to be acknowledged that Operations Artemis was just the beginning of ESDP involvement in the DRC (Duke, 2008) and limited in time (three months), resources (1,850 troops) and destination (Bunia) (UNDPK, 2004). Nevertheless, Hendrickson et al (2007) warns that enthusiasm is premature, because since Operation Artemis “no EU peacekeeping operations have been deployed to Africa since Artemis”, which “demonstrates the EU’s irregular interests in African security, despite the ongoing instability in the DRC, Chad, Sudan, and elsewhere.”  Hendrickson et al (2007) attribute this to “the interests of the most powerful states within the European Union.”  This finding is confirmed by the reason why France in particular was eager to lead this mission: to illustrate the independence and capability of the EU as international actor and balancer to the US shortly after the Iraq War. The fact that the US did not enter another controversial war since the Iraq war, may have contributed to the continuing absence of another EU-led peacekeeping operation, at least until another similar circumstance occurs.

Operation Artemis also underlines the argument of liberals that international actors can cooperate in the framework of international law, while it disproves the standpoint of realists that states either just compete with each other over influence or for their own security, because of the cooperation as such, but also because the UN Security Council approved the EU’s independent action. Although the realists may have a point in arguing that security (breeding ground for terrorism) was here a main issue for the involvement of mainly European countries, the participating nations understood that they need to support each other in a framework of a “division of labour” concerning costs- and task-sharing. This may have also been the reason other UN Security Council members supported the task-sharing, especially the US, which was rather desperately seeking for allies already in the Iraq War in 2003 to share burdens. Even within NATO, the US has asked repeatedly fellow members to contribute more financial resources. Financial crisis; indebtedness of states and taxpayers; and offshoring taxes of rich citizens through sophisticated technology in financial transactions have impacted negatively on national budgets and made defence budgets smaller (e.g. as in the US, the UK and France). At the same time, the increased interconnectedness of national economies into a global market forced states to cut spending and into dependence on each other, e.g. China on western markets, which increasingly forced states to cooperate with each other and reduce spending per GDP in comparison with the Cold War period by either avoiding costly wars or at least to share burdens of tasks and costs within international institutions, if a war occurs. This factor is also strengthened by the increased emphasis on individual’s rights; less willingness of citizens to bear burdens of death and taxation (including in non-western countries); more media coverage, especially in the West, which forces national governments to be more responsive to these demand for less burdens. The increased privatization of warfare through the increase in terrorism and the end of the Cold War made mass armies through conscription redundant, because professionalization is seen as more efficient to these challenges, as seen in the US and UK who already abolished mass conscription in the Cold War period. Recently this example was followed by several other countries (e.g. Germany in 2011), while the Chief of the Russian Armed Forces, Makarov, called for the end of conscription and more professionalization, especially in face of demographic problems (RIA Novosti, 2011). Circumstances of population decline, professionalization of armies and declining budget deficits make also individual soldiers and post-fordist technology, which is more advanced and hence more expensive due to less mass production and more specialized production, more valuable and less dispensable. This development makes realists not redundant, because security is still a major issue but has led to a decline of their importance due to increased interdependence of the postmodern world; and more forced responsiveness to the global economy through economic competitiveness and therefore accelerated cost-cutting (recent UK budgets under George Osbourne). All these factors force nations to increasingly tackle security-related issues through cooperation within international missions.

Conclusion

The Genocide of Tutsis in Rwanda resulted in an involvement of Rwandan and Ugandan troops in Congo in two Congo wars.  Despite peace agreement of the involved actors, violence continued until diplomatic intervention by the United Nations led to an agreement for withdrawal of Ugandan and Rwandan troops from Congo. This, however, caused a political vacuum in the Ituri region and its capital Bunia. The United Nations peacekeepers MONUC (United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo= United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo) were too under-resourced in Ituri to deal with the ensuing violence and inability of humanitarian organizations to provide their services after the withdrawal of Ugandan troops.  In order to stop the violence between ethnic gangs, the United Nations Security Council authorized in Resolution 1484 the mandate for the multinational Operation Artemis under the leadership of France, which included primarily EU countries, to protect civilians and UN staff and re-enable humanitarian assistance in Bunia through securing both the city and the airport of Bunia. On June 12th, the first EU troops landed in Bunia to take control and extended more and more its zone of influence, because it served the security of its forces itself. By implementing ‘weapon-free’ zones in and around Bunia and hitting-back hard against any attacks, IEMF forces were able to successfully re-establish normal activities and a return of civilians in Bunia and surroundings, while causing the retreat of ethnic gangs. Hence, at the end of the Mandate, the IEMF had successfully completed its task and handed over effective control of Bunia partially from September 1st until September 7th to the now authorized enlarged MONUC forces.  This success was contributed by the uncompromising attitude, well-coordinated and well-equipped IEMF forces. It was argued that the EU and France in particular were very keen on illustrating the independence and ability of the EU as international actor in international security matters, especially in the wake of the illegitimate Iraq war by an US-led coalition. However, it was also argued that pre-deployment liaisons with other agencies, including the United Nations, a more generous time and space frame (limited to Bunia and surroundings) and more continuity of EU policy in Africa (no EU intervention since 2003 despite continuing conflicts and genocides) would be more advantageous. Nevertheless, Operation Artemis illustrates that the EU has the capabilities to successfully execute mandates, if the EU member states are willing and agree upon foreign policy actions.  This mission has shown the increasing importance of liberalism and its arguments that international cooperation has risen due to political, military, demographic and socio-economic necessities which actually connects to the main point or realism, security, because security increasingly has been and to be tackled by efficient international cooperation.

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Written by: Michael Koenig
Written at: University of Stirling
Written for: Dr Graham Timmins
Date written: 12/2011

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