Security And Humanitarian Assistance


The UN and the EU are different political entities. Whilst they both that a common desire as that born of the destruction of the World War 1 and World War 2, to prevent the happening of such devastating conflicts, it is evident that they diverge differently and in a way that is far much beyond that point (Umbach, 2010). The UN was created when the leaders of the US and Europe attempted to establish an international organization, which could include all countries, and would also purpose to provide a forum that aided in resolving conflicts diplomatically between the member states. On the contrary, the EU was oriented solely towards various European nations. Similar to the UN, the EU purposed to be a culmination of a significant protracted effort, which aimed at establishing an international organization, which was dedicated towards enhancing peaceful conflict resolutions, and representing a bloc of like-minded nations (Thakur et al., 2007). The EU was formed, with the hope that the borders separating its members would ultimately cease existing. Notably this Europe vision not to be undivided by borders purposely stood in stark and this was contrasting the UN. This assignment purposes to compare the roles played by the EU and the UN in providing enhance governance on security, as well as humanitarian assistance.

The relationship between the UN and the EU

Significantly, the EU delegates to the UN, in coordination with 28 EU nations, in a bid to ensuring that they voice out the same language. In this regard, the said delegation ensured enhanced observer status, present in the UN and thus, allows the EU to present its common positions, make significant interventions, present various proposals, and also participants in the debate conducted by the UN every September of every year (Ginsberg & Penksa, 2012). Notably, the EU also purposes to work closely with the agencies of the UN, as well as its secretariat, fund and program, towards tackling global issues such as sustainable development, human rights, climate change, peacebuilding and conflict resolution, and humanitarian assistance. Notably, in togetherness, the EU and its member states often provide the UN with approximately 30 per cent of its regular budget, as well as 33 per cent of its peacekeeping budget. In this regard, it is evident that collectively, the EU is the UN’s largest contributor, in terms of finance (Mix, 2011).


It should also be noted that every summer, the EU looks into adopting the priorities that are set for the UN in its general assembly that provides a guideline on the delegation of work for the following year. For instance, during the 21st general assembly of the UN, various heads of states agreed upon the then new 2030 agenda, which was meant to enhance sustainable development, thus, seeking to eliminate poverty (Weiss, 2016). In this regard, the EU made an attempt to mobilize the significant resources, in order to help implement the 2030 agenda, and thus, put it into practice. Similarly, during the 72nd general assembly of the UN, the EU made its stand strong by aiming towards reinvigorating multilateralism through supporting towards the establishment of a strong UN, which is notably, a bedrock of rule-based in a global order. Evidently, multilateralism poses as a more core principle, as well as priority of the EU global strategy that enhanced foreign, as well as security policy (Umbach, 2010). Work during these periods focus on three significantly interlinked, and also mutually reinforced priority areas, including the enhancement of strong global governance, prevention of conflict and peace, and also the endurance agenda meant for transformation.


Based on the guideline for the EU global strategy on foreign, and security policy, it is notable that the EU strives for the enhancement of a strong UN, as it is its bedrock of an effective rules-based order. In simple terms, it is evident that the UN has is committed towards enhancing an effective multilateralism, having placed the UN at the center of its operations, and of importance is the fact that this is the central element of the external action of the EU (Umbach, 2010). This commitment was protected by the Lisbon treaty that noted that the union of the EU and the UN was to purposely promote various multilateral solutions that would aid in solving various common problems, based on the framework of the UN. Moreover, the said union was also to work on a high level of cooperation in all field that are concerned with international relations (Mix, 2011). This was to be, with an aim of preserving peace, preventing conflicts, as well as strengthening international security, according to the purposes, as well as the principles of the UN charter.

It is important to take in the fact that over the years, the EU and the UN have been enhancing their capacity to act as security providers, and this is noted in their strategy autonomy, as well as ability to cooperate with each other. They two bodies have goals, which are best served when they work together and based on an internationals system that is guided by rules, as well as multilateralism. Based on this context, it is evident that the UN and the UN came into agreement, with an aim of reinforcing cooperation between various missions, and operating in their field (Umbach, 2010). For instance, women, peace, as well as security have been noted to be the first eight new joint priorities that reinforce the strategic partnership of the EU-UN, towards enhancing peace operations, as well as crisis management for the years 2019 to 2021.

Based on a Common Security and Defense Policy (CSDP), it is significant to not that the EU often operates civilian, as well as military missions across the globe. Notably, these missions entail a variety of tasks that range from managing the borders of the member states and training various local police. Significant to note, the EU’s Naval Force Operation, referred to as “Atlanta” that is off the coast for instance purposes to tackle piracy and also protects various humanitarian shipments of the globe’s food program (Thakur et al., 2007). Moreover, in the Mediterranean, it should also be noted that the EU makes an effort in disrupting the model used in business in the S. Central Mediterranean, in preventing further loss of life. In addition, since the establishment of Europe, there have been security, as well as defense concerns that have been of great primary concerns, and also highly controversial. The EU had made early attempts in setting up a significant defense union, which was largely unsuccessful. However, with the emergence of new security threats, especially at the cease of the cold war, a renewed interest emerged, that relate to issues to do with security, as well as defense (Ginsberg & Penksa, 2012). The three significant determinants that purpose to shape the role, as well as influence of the EU, acting towards enhancing peace as well as security in EU member states are as presented as follows: the first is the capacity to undertake various mission. The second is the willingness to devote significant resources, towards the purposes of security and defense, majorly driven by the priority of the member states, and finally, acceptance of the EU to be a leader in the enhancement of peace and security (Thakur et al., 2007).

Based on the three determinants, and first to start with capacity, it is evident that the capacity of the EU to undertake various missions is significantly influenced by resources, as well as the sophistication level of its various command structures. The EU institutional security, as well as defense framework has undergone various reforms. For instance, the Treat of Maastricht to come up with the Common Foreign, and Security policy (CFSP), in order to coordinate the EU members with a common foreign policy. Moreover, the European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP) was developed to be part of the CFSP (Mix, 2011). Overall, it should be noted that these development purposely strengthened the EU institutional framework, thus endowing it with significant capabilities in controlling politics, and also commanding strategies. Notably, the CSDP operations benefit the EU, based on comprehensive contingency planning, as well as capability that is invested in three vital tasks namely knowledge and anticipation, deterrence, as well as prevention. The third, which is the EU defense budget, poses great significance, and its financial contributions towards enhancing the UN peace mission are often controllable (Thakur et al., 2007). The second determinant, which is willingness relates to the significant power, which member states give to the EU. Evidently, common security, and defense policies do fall under the intergovernmental pillar of the EU, thus, implying that member states are responsible actors for effective decision-making, as well as policy output. The third determinant, which is acceptance, relates the EU’s actions, as its potentiality to play a significant role in enhancing global security, as well as peace. The support provided by the European citizens is regarded as of utmost significant, as it enables the EU to leverage in terms of enhancing authority at a global level, and also influencing the willingness of the member states to use their resources in the EU enterprises (Mix, 2011). Owing to the complexity of the EU context, as well as its frameworks for significant external action, it is important to note that the EU makes institutional reforms, in order to make it coherently capable, willing, and also an accepted player in a global context.

On the other hand, the UN has made efforts in helping to end various conflicts, especially through enforcing the effective actions, protected by the Security Council, which is a UN organ that has its primary responsibility, guided by the UN charter for maintaining international peace, as well as security (Weiss, 2016). It is significant to note that whenever a threat to a members state’s peace is brought before the security council, the first action that the council engages is to recommend to the parties involved to reach out to peaceful means. In some instances, the council undertakes investigations, as well as mediation. As such, it may purpose to appoint a special representative, or make a special request to the Secretary General to enforce such an action of use his effective offices, and this may bring forth principles that may enhance a peaceful maintenance (Thakur, 2016). However, in an instance where a conflict results into fighting, the first concern of the council would be to cease it as soon as possible. Notably and on many occasions, the Security Council has purposed to issue ceasefire directives, and this has been instrumental towards preventing wider hostilities. In addition, the UN employs the UN peacekeeping operations, in aiding to reduce the tensions brought forth by various troubled areas, and keeping multiple opposing forced apart, in order to establish conditions that are essential in enhancing sustainable peace, in an instance where settlements have been achieved (Puchala et al., 2015). Often the Security Council may decide to involve enforcement measures, collective military action, or even economic sanctions.

In accordance with the UN charter, it is evident that the general assemble makes recommendations, based on general cooperation principles that aid in maintaining international security, as well as peace, and this includes disarmament, and settlement of peace that has been reported to entail an impairment of a friendly relation amongst the member states. Additionally, the general assembly also discusses questions related to international security, as well as peace and also makes recommendations, in an instance where an issue is not discussed effectively by the security council (Biscop, 2016). Based on the pursuant of the resolution with the notion, “uniting for peace,” that took place in November 1950, the general assemble may as well purpose to take action in an instance where the security council fails to act effectively. This is based on a permanent member’s negative vote, and also in an instance where it appears to be a breach of peace, an aggressive act, or a threat (Eriksson, 2016). In this regard, the assembly can be in a position to consider the matter, in an immediate effect, with the aim of making recommendations to state member for the enhancement of collective measures that aid in maintaining, and restoring security, as well as international peace.

The UN peacekeeping operations act as vital instruments employed by the member states, to enhance and also advance in security, as well as peace. The first UN mission of peacekeeping was established in the year 1948, when there was the deployment of the UN Truce Supervision Organization by the Security Council, in order to monitor the agreement of the Israel and Arabs on the armistice agreement (Eriksson, 2016). Since that time, there more than 70 United Nations peacekeeping operations have been enforced around the globe. Moreover, over 70 years, it is evident that the UN peacekeeping strategies have evolved, to be able to meet various demands of different nations conflicts, thus, aiming towards changing the political landscape. Having been born at the time when the cold war often paralyzed the Security Council, it is evident that the UN goals have since then been primarily aimed at maintaining ceasefires, and also stabilizing conflict situations by use of peaceful means (Biscop, 2016).

Humanitarian Assistance

Humanitarian assistance refers to material, as well as logistic assistance provided to people that are in need. Normally, it is short-term, up to the time that the government or other institutions replace it (Furness & Gänzle, 2017). Amongst the people that are in need and may need humanitarian assistance are the homeless, victims that has been befallen by natural disasters, famines, and even famines, and even refugees. Notably, humanitarian assistance is provided for the significant humanitarian purposes, in response to relief efforts that include natural disasters, as well as man-made disaster. The UN has the obligation of coordinating various strategies in facilitating humanitarian assistance. In this regard, it has four major entities, whose primarily roles aid in enhancing humanitarian assistance (Van Elsuwege et al., 2016). The four entities include United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the World Food Programme (WFP), the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR), as well as the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR). On the other hand, it is also evident that humanitarian assistance is also an area of the EU, in enhancing an external action, which responds to various needs, in an instance where there is manmade or even natural disasters. The EU has an entity referred to as the Directorate-General for European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO) that aids in generating funds for relief operations, as well as coordinates the policies, as well as the activities of the member states (Orbie, 2016). Moreover, it should be noted that the parliaments, as well as the EU council also purposes to act as co-legislators towards shaping the humanitarian assistance aid policy, and also take part in conducting global debate, when there is need to make its humanitarian action more effective (Irrera, 2018).

The EU has regulations on humanitarian assistance and this includes financial instruments, as laid out in the Council Regulations (EC). The EU’s policy framework also aids in enhancing humanitarian assistance, as laid out in the European Consensus on Humanitarian Aid (Irrera, 2018). This consensus purposes to define the common vision, principles, objectives, as well as the policy of the EU on various topics, which include civil protection, military relations, as well as civil relations. In addition, it purposes to re-confirm the basic significant humanitarian principles of the EU, which include humanity, impartiality, independence, as well as neutrality. In this regard, it provides a coordinated, and also a coherent approach that facilitates humanitarian assistance delivery, and also linking development aid and humanitarian aid, in order to allow the EU to respond in a more quick way to various growing needs (Orbie, 2016). Of importance to note is the fact that ECHO works towards improving its responses to various emergencies, and also provides non-EU countries with significant assistance in strengthening their capacities towards responding to crises and contributing to significant long-term development.

On the other hand, the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs of the UN secretariat is obligated to coordinated various responses to emergencies and this aids in providing emergency relief that is ultimately essential in the provision of assistance quickly, and also efficiently to the individuals in need (Satana, 2016). Moreover, the UN’s Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) that is managed by the OCHA aids in providing fastest and effective ways of supporting humanitarian responses for those affected by armed conflict, or natural disasters. The CERF often received voluntary contributions yearly, in providing immediate funding, for significant life-saving action of humanitarian aid action around the world. The UN’ UNHCR led and coordinated international action that consequently protects refugees, and resolves various problems worldwide (Abushaikha & Schumann-Bölsche, 2016). The United Nation’s General Assembly also holds various high-level meetings, with the intention of addressing large movements of migrants, as well as refugees, thus, aiming towards bringing national together behind coordinated, as well as humane approaches. In addition, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) also strives to reach many children, at low-costs solutions, and aiding in countering big threats to enhance their survival. This body consistently urges governments, to act more towards protecting children (Belliveau, 2016). The World Food Programme (WFP) also provides relief to millions of individuals that are victims of disasters. It is obligated to mobilize food, as well as funds to aid in the transport of refugee-feeding operations that are managed by the UNHRC. Finally, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) also assists famers in establishing their production, following floods, outbreak of diseases, and such of similar emergencies (Rossignoli et al., 2017).

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Based on the provisions presented above, it is evident that both the UN and EU have a common desire as that born of the destruction of the World War 1 and World War 2, to prevent the happening of such devastating conflicts. The UN and the EU purposed to be a culmination of a significant protracted effort, which aimed at establishing an international organization, which was dedicated towards enhancing peaceful conflict resolutions, and representing a bloc of like-minded nations. Both bodies are working towards enhancing peace and security and also aiding in enhancing humanitarian action globally and with combined effort, it is evident that they would make the world a better place.


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