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Argentina: Military peace-keeping exercise

01-04-1998 News Release 98/13

From 16 to 18 March the ICRC regional delegate took part in a military peace-keeping exercise entitled Blue Condor , organized jointly by the Argentine Ministry of Foreign Relations and the British and Argentine armed forces. The exercise was held at the Campo  de Mayo centre, on the outskirts of Buenos Aires. It was attended by some 60 participants from the armed forces, the police and the ministries of foreign affairs of numerous countries in the Americas, two European countries (France and Spain), and representatives of various United Nations departments, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and the Organization of American States. The ICRC was the only non-governmental organization invited.

Four exercises simulated various aspects of the planning and implementation stages of a peace-keeping operation. The scenario was designed in such a way as to combine all the obstacles encountered by UN peace-keeping missions in various theatres of operation during the 1990s. The participants first had to draw up a plan to restore peace among different factions in a fictitious country; this plan having failed, they were then asked to draft the general outline of a Security Council resolution authorizing the dispatch of a peace-keeping mission. Lastly, they had to establish a plan of action and deal with the initial difficulties facing the mission. Each exercise was commented on by experts, under the leadership of General van Kappen, of the UN Department of Peace-keeping Operations.