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Broadening the mandate of the Security Council - HIV/AIDS as a threat to international peace and security

Karlsson, David (2003)
Department of Law
Abstract
The question of international peace and security today includes far more than merely weapons and balance of power. The cold war conception of state security with primary focus on external aggression failed to offer adequate protection against the everyday threats facing the people of the world - threats that often are more tangible than a looming threat of war. Entrusted with the responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security, the United Nations Security Council recognized this shortcoming in a series of actions in the early 1990's. Unleashed from the political constraints caused by the conditions of the cold war, the Security Council effectively broadened the concept of peace and security by determining situations... (More)
The question of international peace and security today includes far more than merely weapons and balance of power. The cold war conception of state security with primary focus on external aggression failed to offer adequate protection against the everyday threats facing the people of the world - threats that often are more tangible than a looming threat of war. Entrusted with the responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security, the United Nations Security Council recognized this shortcoming in a series of actions in the early 1990's. Unleashed from the political constraints caused by the conditions of the cold war, the Security Council effectively broadened the concept of peace and security by determining situations of internal conflict and grave violations of human rights as threats to international peace and security. The first step towards a more inclusive security concept was thus taken. With foundation in the classic concepts of freedom from fear and freedom from want, the United Nations is constructed around two pillars of security - state and human security. The issue of state security is since long fully incorporated in the work of the UN and the Security Council. However, to achieve the underlying vision of the UN, both pillar need to be incorporated into the work of the organization. Based on the understanding that nothing could be written into the United Nations charter that would enable the Security Council to make the world secure from war if men and women were not secure in their lives, homes and jobs, the concept of human security evolved. Human security relates to the second pillar of security and serves as an essential complement to state security. Human security means protecting those freedoms that are the essence of life and it is not limited to the mere absence of armed conflict. It is defined by human rights norms and includes a multitude of components such as good governance and the rule of law. An inclusive concept of human security could give the Security Council the tool to fulfill its responsibilities in achieving the vision of the charter. Furthermore, a broadened security concept would provide the council with the means to achieve the desirable objective of becoming a more prevention-oriented body. The HIV/AIDS epidemic serves as an alarming example of the need of a broadened security concept. Still in the early stages, the epidemic has been the cause of immense suffering and death, effectively destroying entire communities, wiping out decades of development gains and representing a grave threat to entire continents. The HIV/AIDS epidemic threatens the human rights of millions of people worldwide and poses as a threat to individual, economic, communal, national and international security in the worst affected countries. The destabilizing effects of the epidemic can result in grave consequences for the international community. Through a broadened security concept, the Security Council could engage in the battle against the epidemic, a battle that urgently needs to be fought on all levels. The intentions of the drafters of the UN charter were to create a living document, adaptable to the constantly changing conditions in our world. As new and diverse threats to international peace and security surfaces, this intention must be reflected in the mandate of the Security Council. The crosscutting characteristics of the HIV/AIDS epidemic call for a multisectoral approach embodying not only the traditional health perspective, but also human rights and security perspectives, in order to reverse the epidemic. Not until the security mandate of the Security Council is made more inclusive can pervasive threats as the HIV/AIDS epidemic be successfully countered. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Karlsson, David
supervisor
organization
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
Folkrätt
language
English
id
1559071
date added to LUP
2010-03-08 15:55:23
date last changed
2010-03-08 15:55:23
@misc{1559071,
  abstract     = {The question of international peace and security today includes far more than merely weapons and balance of power. The cold war conception of state security with primary focus on external aggression failed to offer adequate protection against the everyday threats facing the people of the world - threats that often are more tangible than a looming threat of war. Entrusted with the responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security, the United Nations Security Council recognized this shortcoming in a series of actions in the early 1990's. Unleashed from the political constraints caused by the conditions of the cold war, the Security Council effectively broadened the concept of peace and security by determining situations of internal conflict and grave violations of human rights as threats to international peace and security. The first step towards a more inclusive security concept was thus taken. With foundation in the classic concepts of freedom from fear and freedom from want, the United Nations is constructed around two pillars of security - state and human security. The issue of state security is since long fully incorporated in the work of the UN and the Security Council. However, to achieve the underlying vision of the UN, both pillar need to be incorporated into the work of the organization. Based on the understanding that nothing could be written into the United Nations charter that would enable the Security Council to make the world secure from war if men and women were not secure in their lives, homes and jobs, the concept of human security evolved. Human security relates to the second pillar of security and serves as an essential complement to state security. Human security means protecting those freedoms that are the essence of life and it is not limited to the mere absence of armed conflict. It is defined by human rights norms and includes a multitude of components such as good governance and the rule of law. An inclusive concept of human security could give the Security Council the tool to fulfill its responsibilities in achieving the vision of the charter. Furthermore, a broadened security concept would provide the council with the means to achieve the desirable objective of becoming a more prevention-oriented body. The HIV/AIDS epidemic serves as an alarming example of the need of a broadened security concept. Still in the early stages, the epidemic has been the cause of immense suffering and death, effectively destroying entire communities, wiping out decades of development gains and representing a grave threat to entire continents. The HIV/AIDS epidemic threatens the human rights of millions of people worldwide and poses as a threat to individual, economic, communal, national and international security in the worst affected countries. The destabilizing effects of the epidemic can result in grave consequences for the international community. Through a broadened security concept, the Security Council could engage in the battle against the epidemic, a battle that urgently needs to be fought on all levels. The intentions of the drafters of the UN charter were to create a living document, adaptable to the constantly changing conditions in our world. As new and diverse threats to international peace and security surfaces, this intention must be reflected in the mandate of the Security Council. The crosscutting characteristics of the HIV/AIDS epidemic call for a multisectoral approach embodying not only the traditional health perspective, but also human rights and security perspectives, in order to reverse the epidemic. Not until the security mandate of the Security Council is made more inclusive can pervasive threats as the HIV/AIDS epidemic be successfully countered.},
  author       = {Karlsson, David},
  keyword      = {Folkrätt},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Broadening the mandate of the Security Council - HIV/AIDS as a threat to international peace and security},
  year         = {2003},
}