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The New Diplomacy

by on May 17, 2013

Diplomacy is a subject of a constant evolution. An evolution gradually transformed from the previous ‘traditional’ to the so called present ‘new’ diplomacy. One of the most significant dimensions of the new diplomacy is world globalisation and the occurrence of new actors in the international system.  In the multilateral context alone, the number of UN-accredited NGOs had risen from 40 in 1945 to 3,536 by the end of 2011. The Top 100 NGOs ranking will inform policy-makers, business, academics and non-profit leaders [1], so the increase in number has been followed by an increase in power as well as influence.

The developing globalisation and the increase of NGOs influence leads also towards the enhancement of communication on an international level. International organisations have a voice and a say on the international agenda. Governments tend to keep NGOs on their side in order to avoid problems and also demonstrate to the public a will of cooperation and development. Depending on how determined and effective an organisation is in terms of public support and campaigning, a certain issue may become highlighted enough for the government to not have other choice but to raise the issue.

An on-going problem is the Syrian crisis which has been seen by many as an international problem and a threat. Though there has not yet been a resolution found, the issue has been addressed uncountable times by different NGOs such as Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch  and International Committee of the Red Cross. On 16th May 2013 in a press conference, President Barack Obama has said “all options; diplomatic and military are being considered to resolve the situation in Syria.” [2] However he also added that “Syria was an international problem and that unilateral action from the US would not bring about a better outcome in the country”[3], which arguably encourages the rest of the world player to also take an action.  

Diplomacy has been evolving and will certainly continue to in future. Although not the ideal scenario, the growing and improving cooperation amongst NGOs and Governments has the potential to bring change, development and a better future internationally.  

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