The 1994 Convention on the Safety of United Nations and Associated Personnel (Safety Convention) was the first multilateral convention to deal specifically with the protection of personnel engaged in peace operations. It should be viewed against the background of the increasingly volatile environments in which peace operation personnel were required to operate at the beginning of the 1990s.
Protection, for which a host government is responsible for securing for personnel in peace operations, may be categorised as a general and a special protection. The former includes, for example, human rights law and international humanitarian law. The latter comprises privileges and immunities accorded to agents of states or organisations.
The contribution of the Safety Convention is mainly one of interstate penal law co-operation. States parties are obligated to co-operate in order to effectively prosecute the perpetrators of stipulated crimes. The protection afforded by the Safety Convention may therefore be categorised as being part of an emerging legal regime against impunity. The Safety Convention’s scope of application, however, has been criticised and at the time of writing an additional protocol was being discussed within the framework of an Ad Hoc Committee. This committee has met annually since 2002.
Current peace operations often include a regional dimension. The multifunctional character of such operations requires a wide range of personnel, from military forces to civilian contractors. They are often based upon Chapter VII of the UN Charter and charged with enforcement capabilities.
An effective protection needs to address the specific challenges surrounding such operations. Some of these challenges, identified in this study, include the need to broaden the scope of application of the Safety Convention and the interplay between the rules of peace and war as well as responsibility and accountability of protected personnel. It is also contended that there is a need for an effective implementation of existing rules, and a careful development of so-called status-of-forces agreements applicable in peace operations.
Stockholm: Juridiska institutionen Stockholms universitet , 2005. , 395 p.