Document Type


Publication Date



The analysis that follows aims to present dynamic new information about pressing law of the use of force and peacemaking developments in Africa. It is meant to be more descriptive than analytic. It will discuss, among other things, the evolution of the international law of the use of force by assessing state practice and treaty law developments in Africa since the end of the Cold War-developments that undoubtedly form an important part of the evolution of the corpus of general international law. Space constraints will not permit me to examine the legality of the various African interventions that have taken place since the end of the Cold War (the majority of which took place without UNSC authorization). These include the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) interventions in Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea-Bissau, and now Guinea; the Mission for the Implementation of the Bangui Agreement (MISAB) in the Central African Republic (CAR); and the Southern African Development Community (SADC) operation in Lesotho. I will nonetheless discuss the efficacy of the regional frameworks that gave them impetus.1 I will also refer to the intervention provisions in the new Constitutive Act of the African Union (AU), which in late 2002 will replace the Organization of African Unity as the premier continental organization in Africa. Not only is Africa the first region to advance comprehensive intervention regimes, but the ones it advances are leagues ahead of the other regions of the world. African state practice and treaty law developments since the end of the Cold War illustrate that, with some exceptions, African nations have been among the most committed to creating peace both within and outside of Africa.