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European Crisis Management Missions and Human Rights

Julia Schmidt

The European Union is increasingly undertaking civilian and military crisis missions all over the world in its attempt to become a global security actor. Its ambitions to strengthen its influence on the international scene through comprehensive crisis management missions are closely linked to the promotion of human rights. One of the EU's policy goals and biggest challenges ahead is to mainstream human rights into all phases and aspects of crisis management, including the planning as well as the implementation phase of an operationThe paper will show that the European Union is legally bound by human rights not only from a European perspective but also from the perspective of international law when it is engaged in crisis management operations. In order to visualise the importance for the respect for human rights the paper will also examine the possible responsibility of the European Union for human rights violations committed by EU-led forces by analysing the Behrami and Saramati decisions of the European Court of Human Rights. Lastly, the paper will look at the progress that has been done by the European Union and its various actors in the mainstreaming of human rights in crisis management missions so far.

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