'Peacekeeper Babies': An Unintended Legacy of United Nations Peace Support Operations
In March 2008 the United Nations General assembly adopted Resolution 62/214, which promulgated the 'Comprehensive Strategy on Assistance and Support to Victims of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse by United Nations Staff and Related Personnel'. Although reports on widespread sexual exploitation and sexual abuse emerged in the early 1990s, until 2008 there was no strategy specifically developed to assist women sexually exploited or abused by, and children fathered by, UN peacekeepers. In this sense, the Comprehensive Strategy is groundbreaking. However, we argue that UN policy fails to distinguish adequately between sexually exploitative and consensual relationships, which can create confusion for personnel as to what sexual conduct is permitted and what is prohibited. This paper will provide a critical analysis of the Comprehensive Strategy, examining its potential and obstacles to its implementation, with specific regard to children born to peacekeeping personnel engaged in consensual relationships with local women. This examination will be conducted within the context of the case study of Marko 굚nja, born to a Bosnian peacekeeper father and East Timorese mother.
Law and Society