Speaker Events - Friday, March 18, 2011
Løj: Elections "Test Case" for Liberia
Ellen Margrethe Løj, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for the UN Mission in Liberia, said at an IPI event on March 18th that the fall elections in Liberia "would be a test case for the Liberians’ willingness to continue on the road to sustainable peace and development."
"These elections have to be run 100 percent by the Liberians themselves, and in accordance with the Liberian constitution," she said, though "not without support from the international community."
She warned that the elections—and Liberia's stability—could be compromised by the fraught situation in Côte d'Ivoire. The crisis there has also created a refugee emergency in Liberia.
"Ivorians are fleeing to Liberia, and we have now over 90,000 refugees in a very limited area bordering Côte d'Ivoire," she said. “We are now getting reports about tension building between the host communities and the refugees."
In addition, she said, "there are a lot of weapons around in Côte d'Ivoire," and many of them are ending up in Liberia.
According to the UN High Commission for Refugees, the UN mission has stepped up its military and police presence along the 700-kilometer-long border. Agence France-Presse reported that hundreds of mercenaries from Liberia have crossed the border into Côte d’Ivoire and are committing atrocities there.
"We need all the focus we can have on finding a political solution in Côte d'Ivoire, she said. "We need that for the people of Côte d’Ivoire, but we need it for the whole West African region."
Ms. Løj noted that historically crises in West Africa quickly spill over into neighboring countries. "We should do everything in our power to avoid that happening again," she said.
The Global Observatory
The Search for Federal Solutions
The continuing spread of conflicts across the Middle East and Africa demonstrates the inadequacy of the centralized-state system and the growing appeal of federal solutions.
Key Global Events to Watch in August
A list of key upcoming meetings and events with implications for global affairs.
2014 Top 10 Issues to Watch in Peace & Security: The Global Arena
A list of ten key issues to watch that are likely to impact international peace and security in 2014, compiled by IPI's Francesco Mancini.
The Global Observatory, produced by IPI, provides timely analysis on peace and security issues, interviews with leading policymakers, interactive maps, and more.
July 17, 2014
EU and UN Seek Ways to Improve Cooperation in Peacekeeping
The European Union is among the strongest supporters of UN peacekeeping missions around the globe, but the growing challenges faced by UN-led operations have raised the need for better EU-UN cooperation, both on the ground and at the planning level.
July 07, 2014
IPI Hosts African Junior Fellows
The sixth annual African Junior Professionals Fellowship Program at IPI brought ten African scholars to New York for a month-long familiarization with the United Nations and the related think tank community, from July 7-31 2014.
July 01, 2014
SRSG Johnson: South Sudan Crisis Changed UNMISS “Mindset”
Hilde Johnson, the outgoing Head of the UN Mission in the Republic of South Sudan (UNMISS), gave an overflow IPI audience a dramatic account of the challenging situation that has faced the United Nations in the country since the eruption of mass violence at the end of last year.