Preventive Diplomacy Essay

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Evolution The concept and practice of violence prevention have evolved from being focused almost exclusively on the short-term interventions of preventive diplomacy, to a new, more comprehensive approach that can be defined as structural prevention and includes long-term initiatives targeting the root causes[->0] of conflict. Violence prevention re-emerged in the theoretical literature in the early 1990s, initially without significant practical application. It was presented as an official policy of the United Nations by then-Secretary General Boutros Boutros-Ghali, in his 1992 Agenda for Peace[->1]. The focus was on short-term preventive interventions. At about that time, the end of the Cold War had suggested that the international community could intervene flexibly and effectively to prevent the explosion of conflicts, an impression that was reinforced by subsequent failures to prevent violence in Yugoslavia and Rwanda. It was commonly believed that different behavior by neighboring countries, in the case of Yugoslavia, and a limited but robust military intervention in Rwanda, could have saved hundreds of thousands of lives. A subsequent successful U.N. deployment in Macedonia[->2] confirmed this idea. Since then, the concept of violence prevention has developed further and moved its focus from preventive diplomacy, including a limited set of diplomatic or military initiatives, to more structural interventions. Academics and practitioners have stretched the concept to include, in addition to diplomacy[->3] and military operations[->4], institution building, economic development, and grassroots community building. In the 2001 Report of the U.N. Secretary General on Prevention of Armed Conflict[->5] an "effective preventive strategy" is said to require "a comprehensive approach that encompasses both short-term and long-term political, diplomatic, humanitarian,
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