Ongoing UN Peacekeeping Missions in Africa

There are currently seven United Nations Peacekeeping Missions in Africa. 


The United Nations Mission in the Republic of South Sudan began July 2011 when the Republic of South Sudan officially became the newest country in Africa, having split from The Sudan. The split came after decades of war, and the peace remains fragile. In December 2013, renewed violence broke out, and the UNMISS team was accused of partisanship. A cessation of hostilities was reached 23 January 2014, and the UN authorized further troops for the Mission, which continues to supply humanitarian aid. As of June 2015 the Mission had 12,523 service personnel and more then 2,000 civilian staff members.


The United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei began June 2011. It was tasked with protecting civilians in the region of Abyei, along the border between The Sudan and what became the Republic of South Sudan. The Force is also tasked with helping The Sudan and the Republic of South Sudan with stabilizing their border near Abyei. In May 2013, the UN expanded the force.  As of June 2015, the Force was comprised of 4,366 service personnel and more than 200 civilian staff members and UN volunteers.


The United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo commenced 28 May 2010. It replaced the UN Organization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. While the Second Congo War officially ended in 2002, fighting continues, particularly in the eastern Kivu region of the DRC. The MONUSCO force is authorized to use force if need be to protect civilians and humanitarian personnel. It was due to be withdrawn in March 2015, but was extended into 2016. 


The United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) was created 19 September 2003 during the Second Liberian Civil War. It replaced the UN Peace-building Support Office in Liberia. The warring factions signed a peace agreement in August 2003, and general elections were held in 2005. The UNMIL's current mandate includes continuing to protect civilians from any violence and providing humanitarian aid. It is also tasked with assisting the Liberian government with strengthening national institutions for justice.


The African Union / United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur began 31 July 2007, and as of June 2015, it was the largest peacekeeping operation in the world. The African Union deployed peacekeeping forces to Darfur in 2006, following the signing of a peace accord between The Sudan government and rebel groups.  The peace agreement was not implemented, and in 2007, UNAMID replaced the AU operation. The UNAMID is tasked with facilitating the peace process, providing security, helping establish the rule of law, providing humanitarian aid, and protecting civilians.


The United Nations Operation in Côte d'Ivoire began in April 2004. It replaced the much smaller United Nations Mission in Côte d'Ivoire. Its original mandate was to facilitate the peace agreement that ended the Ivorian Civil War. It took six years, though, to hold elections, and after the 2010 elections, the incumbent, President Laurent Gbagbo, who had governed since 2000, did not step down. Five months of violence followed, but it ended with the arrest of Gbagbo in 2011. Since then, there has been progress, but the UNOCI remains in Côte d'Ivoire to protect civilians, ease the transition, and ensure disarmament.


The UN Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO) began 29 April 1991.  Its outcomes were to 

  1. Monitor the ceasefire and troop locations
  2. Oversee POW exchanges and repatriation
  3. Organize a referendum on  Western Sahara independence from Morocco

The mission has been ongoing for twenty-five years. During that time, MINURSO forces have assisted in maintaining the ceasefire and removing mines, but it has not yet been possible to organize a referendum on Western Saharan independence.


"Current Peacekeeping Operations," United Nations (Accessed 30 January 2016).

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Your Citation
Thompsell, Angela. "Ongoing UN Peacekeeping Missions in Africa." ThoughtCo, Jan. 28, 2020, Thompsell, Angela. (2020, January 28). Ongoing UN Peacekeeping Missions in Africa. Retrieved from Thompsell, Angela. "Ongoing UN Peacekeeping Missions in Africa." ThoughtCo. (accessed March 30, 2023).