3. One of the potential consequences of international conflict is the “spill-over” of violence between two or more parties in to the territory or issue fields of third parties. We can imagine that several thousand years ago, the distribution of human population was so sparse that violent conflict between two tribes, rural communities, or city-states had little impact on surrounding areas. Anthropological and historical evidence indicates however, that, even in primitive political system, mediation by third parties was often practiced as a means of preventing involvement of additional parties in the conflict. In ancient China, India, Greece and elsewhere, governments commonly recognized that they had an interest in limiting the violent excesses of warring communities. Some societies coped with the problem by formulating rules of neutrality; others such as the Geeks, developed procedures for mediation and arbitration, whereby an eminent citizen of a non-involved city-state would bring representatives of the warring communities together and bargain with them until some sort of settlement could be fashioned.
Efforts to institutionalise mechanism for interacting third parties into crises and conflicts have been in the European historical setting, sporadic. Prior to the development of the nation-state, when Europe was carried into a patchwork of archives, free cities, city states, aspiring monarchies and semi-independent provinces, mediation services were often available and occasionally involved the pope. By the end of the seventeenth century the state of the European international system had achieved some measure of independence and through the legal doctrines of sovereignty, recognized no higher authority over their internal affairs or external relations. The international law of the period regarded force as a legitimate instrument for achieving or defending state objectives and no sovereignty would admit that a third party had any right to intervene diplomatically in a crisis of war. The only protection against drawing more parties was the specific rights and duties ascribed in central states.
During the nineteenth century a number of states concluded treaties that called for arbitration of disputes and almost 300 unimportant international disputes were resolved through ad hoc arbitral proceedings. In the latter part of the century, owing party to the influence of the successful arbitration of a dispute verging on conflict between the United Nations and Great Britain (the Alabama claims case, 1871) a number of private groups began to agitate for creation of permanent international institutions for handling conflicts and disputes. They argued that establishment of a permanent international tribunal armed with enforcement powers and supported by limitations on armaments, would give rise to a new era of peace. These sentiments eventually influenced some governments, and in 1899 and 1907 they reluctantly convinced an international conference at the Hague to discuss plans for such institutions.
(a) Propose the title for this passage.
(b) Mention two ways that the passage is advocating for settling disputes.
(c) How did the 17th century European sovereign states achieved their foreign goals?
(d) From your experience mention two conflicts which are currently being mediated in Africa.
(e) Is there any international tribunal formed for settling disputes in Africa? Mention it.