A CRITIQUE OF THE ROLE OF THE UNITED NATIONS SECURITY COUNCIL IN PROMOTING PEACE AND SECURITY UNDER INTERNATIONAL LAW
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The international community saw the need for unity, peace, cooperation, and a state of security. This task was given the UNSC. But due to its inability to handle the plethora of breach of peace situations the world is experiencing creates a lot of doubts as to the seriousness of this body to carry on the task assigned her. Some of the question this research intends to answer is to see how committed the Security Council members are in maintaining and promoting world peace and security. With their over looming interest will the world experience a better peace and security situation than before? The objectives of this research is to examine the effectiveness of the UNSC in its principal role of maintaining peace and security given the high level of breach of peace situations the world is experiencing. The methodology used in this work is the doctrinal method. Some of the findings arrived at in this research is the lack of means sufficient enough to carry out its functions. The veto power of the permanent five members of the Security Council is a hindrance to this body`s function. To proffer some solutions, rebel and terrorist group`s funds should not only be frozen after they are discovered. They should be sent to the coffers of the UN to help resolve security issues in the areas that are unstable or that they breached the peace. The General Assembly‘s most important attempt so far to prevent the paralysis of the United Nations in measures of collective security was the Uniting for Peace Resolution of 3rd November, 1950. This resolution attempted to counter the hindrance of the Security Council caused by the excessive use of the veto and the negligence of previous recommendations by the General Assembly.
CHAPTER ONE GENERAL INTRODUCTION 1.1 Introduction The International community continues to experience human suffering on a scale unparalleled in human history despite all efforts made at international, regional and sub-regional levels. This stems primarily from some complex and often prolonged conflicts which initiatives to address the peace, security and stability challenges by the United Nations (UN), the international community and a range of regional and sub-regional organizations have failed to prove the efficacy of these organizations, which nonetheless, continue the battle to find a lasting solution. The plight of every society nowadays is to attain a reasonable level of economic growth, better standard of living and peace at all cost. No society can achieve these objectives without a reasonable level of peace and security. Peace and Security are virtues that are desired by individuals, families, countries, continents and the world as a whole. A peaceful and secured environment is a safe haven for investors which will definitely trigger economic growth and development. No investor will like to invest his hard earned savings in an unsecured environment. That is why so many countries spend huge resources both financial and human in order to ensure that there is peace and security so as to attract investors.
The cost of maintaining peace and security is far less expensive than halting war or breaches of peace. It is estimated that the United Nations spent about 200 billion dollars on several military interventions in 1990 in Bosnia Herzegovina, Somalia, Rwanda, Haiti, Persia Gulf, Cambodia and El Salvador of which a preventive approach would have cost her just the sum of 130 billion dollars.1
This is to reiterate the fact that peace and security is gold. These virtues are neededat every level if mankind must sit and ponder of the future. Governments have never stopped at any level to put all their efforts together to ensure that there is peace and security in their countries. That is why there is the police force, the soldiers and private security providers trained in different specialties and fields; all with the aim of providing peace at its highest level. Governments have not stopped at anything to give their security agents proper training, to organize refresher programs for them and to send them to foreign countries for better security skills.
Despite the efforts made at the national levels to maintain and promote peace and security, the international community has not relented in its efforts to ensure that peace and security is at its maximum level at every corners of this earth. That is why the creation of the League of Nations2 (LON) was so important to foster world peace and security. It failed in the mission for which it was created witnessed by two world wars that led to untold human and material loss. The LON lost credibility in the eyes of the international community. The United Nations Organisation3 (UNO) was then created to replace the LON with the principal objectives being to maintain international peace and security4. The United Nations(UN) through the Security Council5 (SC) has been doing a lot in its bid to maintain and promote peace and security worldwide. Regional organizations too, do help in the maintenance of international peace and security. This was recognized, encouraged and authorized by the founders of the United Nations and the drafters of its charter (UN) and is articulated in Chapter VIII6. Some of these regional bodies are the Organization of Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS),the Southern African Development Community (SADC), North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) made up of an alliance of 26 countries from North America and Europe, African Union (AU), The Organisation of American States (OAS) etc.
The SC has been taking various measures to arrive at its objectives of maintaining peace and security which is its principal task since it was created7. Weapons monitoring and checks have been greatly embarked upon8, sanctions applied in certain circumstances and military interventions in other circumstances, no fly zone, arms embargo etc. In some instances the SC has intervened in a country‘s territorial jurisdiction with tangible reasons to maintain and promote peace and Securitywhile in others, there has been no tangible and objective reason for intervention or interventions to protect the interest of a member (Libya, Iraq). At some instances, the SC has had a very tough time in getting a general agreement from its permanent members in intervening9. The various interventions by the SC or any of the regional or sub regional bodies have been bedeviled by huge financial, material and human loss both at the level of the intervening body and the fighting groups.Mankind‘s efforts to achieve this have been plagued by terrorism, attack of smaller state (weaker) by bigger and more powerful states.