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Rita Santos

Rita Santos is a researcher at the Centre for Social Studies and a PhD candidate in international politics and conflict resolution (University of Coimbra). She was a research fellow at the Centre for Studies on Security and Citizenship (Candido Mendes University).
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Teresa Almeida Cravo

Teresa Almeida Cravo is a researcher at the Centre for Social Studies and a lecturer in international relations at the University of Coimbra, Portugal. She holds a PhD in politics and international studies from the University of Cambridge and a master’s in peace studies from the University of Bra...
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Brazil’s rising profile in United Nations peacekeeping operations since the end of the cold war

Rita Santos, Teresa Almeida Cravo, 31 March 2014

Brazil’s engagement in United Nations (UN)-mandated peacekeeping operations dates from 1956. Since then the country has participated in 46 of 65 UN peacekeeping operations, deploying 11,669 personnel in total. Yet until 2004-05, with the UN’s peacekeeping mission in Haiti, Brazilian contributions to such operations were mainly symbolic, military based and concentrated in Portuguese-speaking countries. Recent changes in the size, type and geographical distribution of Brazil’s participation in peace operations echo the reorientation of the country’s foreign policy in its search for a more globalised political influence, especially under Lula da Silva’s presidency. In particular, peacekeeping under UN aegis has enabled Brazil to showcase its perceived added value in terms of its expertise on stabilisation, track record on development and conflict mediation, and advocacy for the Global South. Aspiring to become a world power, Brazil has assumed a role in peace and security that is more consistent with enhanced international responsibility. Yet, as this report highlights, this transformation has been characterised by dilemmas that are a product of the country’s simultaneous legitimation and contestation of the international power structures in which it operates.

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