Learning to Use Force on the Hoof in Peacekeeping: Reflections on the Experience of MONUC's Eastern Division

"The aim of this paper is to focus on the role of UN peacekeepers in robust Chapter VII operations; the appropriate level of military response; challenges commanders face in the field; and the need to improve their performance. The change from traditional peacekeeping under a Chapter VI mandate to a complex, robust peacekeeping operation under a Chapter VII mandate has a number of important implications MONUCS experience in the DRC is used to provide a number of suggestions on how and when UN peacekeeper's decisions in the field to use force should be made. The security situation in the DRC is outlined and the 2004 Bukavu crisis that led to the formation and deployment of the Eastern Division is addressed. It also includes lessons learnt on risk management for the troops, challenges facing UN military commanders in multidimensional peace operations and the adjustments made to make the operations of MONUC's military component more effective. It concludes with some suggestions on the way forward."