As a global actor, the EU promotes integration as a means to support peace and prosperity and to overcome conflicts around the world.
To this end peace building and conflict prevention are at the heart of the action of the EEAS. The EU aims to ‘promote peace, its values and the well-being of its peoples’ (TEU Art 3(1) as amended by the Lisbon Treaty) and to ‘preserve peace, prevent conflicts and strengthen international security’ (Article 21(2)).
The EU plays an important role in promoting and establishing peace as it is the world's largest trading partner and aid donor, a key contributor to international organisations, a significant provider of security in its own right and in cooperation with key strategic partners.
The EU is employing its wide array of external assistance instruments in support of conflict prevention and peace building efforts. Annual commitments make the EU one of the major donors in this area.
Some important elements of the EU external action for the prevention of conflicts are:
In this context, the EU promotes the systematic use of conflict analysis, notably with respect to fragile and conflict-prone countries.
Mediation is part of the EU preventive diplomacy on the ground and is seen as a component of the EU’s comprehensive toolbox in the area of conflict prevention and peace-building in conflict countries.
Based on the Concept on Strengthening EU Mediation and Dialogue Capacities adopted in November 2009 [156 KB] , the EU has developed its own mediation support capacity.
Actors such as EU Special Representatives, EU Delegations and CSDP missions are frequently engaged in mediation efforts, ranging from high political level to political facilitation and confidence building. The EU is also active with dialogue processes with civil society organisations at grassroots levels, in particular through the Instrument for Stability (IfS).
A specifically dedicated "Conflict prevention, Peace building and Mediation Instruments Division” within the EEAS supports geographic services, EU Delegations, EU Special Representatives and EEAS senior management in taking decisions in the pursuit of peace, peace mediation and prevention of conflict.
The aim of the Mediation Support Team [154 KB] is to promote the use of mediation and dialogue as a tool of first response to emerging and ongoing crisis.
Factsheets on Mediation and Dialogue: