• Making a Difference? European Union’s Response to Conflict and Mass Atrocities in the Democratic Republic of Congo (1994-2009)

      Pankhurst, Donna T.; Bizimana Kayinamura, Ladislas (University of BradfordDepartment of Peace Studies, 2013)
      This dissertation scrutinises two related claims that were particularly heightened in 2009 as the European Union (EU) was celebrating the first tenth anniversary of its European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP), the implementing arm of its Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP). First, the two policy frameworks allegedly embodied sufficient added value for bettering EU intervention for human protection purposes in third places. Second, the ESDP supposedly enabled the EU to make a difference in its response to two bloody wars that broke out in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo) successively in 1996 and 1998. This thesis argues that the alleged added value and difference have been overstated at best. While various studies have taken a similar position, they have important shortcomings for at least four reasons: lack of a comprehensive account of the CFSP motives, capacities, and response; exclusive focus on civil and military operations; focus on the post-Second Congo War period; and a lack of conceptual clarity regarding two key terms – ‘conflict resolution’ and ‘peacebuilding’. This thesis goes beyond generalisation and undertakes a forensic examination of the CFSP statements, decisions, and actions precisely through the lens of Conflict Resolution (CR): a specific subject area of study with its own normative, theoretical, and practical advantages and shortcomings; and with a more comprehensive and indeed seminal conceptualisation of peacebuilding. The outcome is a far more nuanced assessment of failure and success of the EU’s peace endeavours in this context than can be obtained through a broad-brush approach to analysis