Why is participation in UN peace-keeping and humanitarian operations such a sensitive issue for Japanese policymakers? Although Japan is among the United Nations’ most enthusiastic supporters, it has only recently begun to send its Self-Defense Forces to assist UN peace operations.
In this book, three experts unravel the political and legal complexities that bedevil Japanese officials in their attempts to cooperate with these missions. A comprehensive historical overview of Japan’s peace-keeping policy provides readers with background to understand this contentious issue. The following two sections offer a detailed look at Japanese participation in recent UN peace operations and at the complex decisionmaking process that preceded this. The longest section is devoted to in-depth analysis of the legal aspects of Japan’s peace-keeping policy, particularly the constraints under which policymakers operate. The final section details Japanese and civilian participation in UN peace operations.