Intermediaries In International Conflict Essay


Discuss about the International Conflict.


The term international conflict means the conflict between different states, organization, or different peoples of different regions. However, the term applies to inter-group conflicts i.e, when groups with different objectives fight within a country to gain socio-economic-political power. International conflicts can be grouped into private-sector international conflict and public-sector international conflict. A conflict is said to have arise between two or more countries or conflict between national governments. Private conflicts can be or similar to private domestic interpersonal and business conflicts. The international business conflicts are generally resolved through arbitration in any of the international arbitration organizations. The other group of conflicts is the public international conflicts are difficult and complicated to resolve. The public international conflict is restricted and limited to nations or states. In last few decades, we have noticed innumerable international conflicts, which were actually inter group or communal conflicts within a particular state or nation. The main issue of such dispute is related to political, socio, and economic groups. For instance, a conflict between a US compute company and the Japanese software company is a private international conflict. There was a contract between the Japanese company and the US computer company to supply ten thousand motherboards to the US computer company, but the Japanese company failed to supply the full amount of motherboards as per the contract and it triggers to arise international conflict. This type of conflicts are easy to handle and can be easily resolved by way of negotiation or other means of resolving process. Public international conflict can be easily understood by the example of US and Taliban in Afghanistan or conflict between India and Pakistan related to international boundaries. However, conflicts are considered international when there is an involvement of any international government or organization. Public conflicts are generally handled and resolved by the international organizations Such as ICJ or United Nations Organization.

There are various process of resolving these international disputes through negotiation, facilitation, alternative dispute resolution, arbitration, mediation and many more. However, negotiation is the best form of dispute resolution process in the international conflict and should be used as the first step to resolve international conflict.

Negotiation is the process of negotiating and come to a mutual compromise by way of discussions. Everyone has to go through the process of negotiation in our life starting from discussions with parents to communications with other people for the remainder of our life. Negotiation is the process of obtaining and finds a way to overcome a difficulty (Snyder and Diesing 2015). We all think that negotiation is a part of resolving disputes and overcoming the difficulties but it is more that that as it includes the tool to achieve a goal through interaction and communication. Negotiation is a part of Alternative Dispute Redressal system, which has a common goal to achieve and resolve disputes. Negotiation is the best way of resolving and settlement of dispute and should always be used as the first step in dispute resolution process where two or more persons communicate with each other to come to a mutual settlement (Goldberg et al, 2014).

Negotiation as a process of dispute settlement can be setup at any time, at any place, and among any number of parties to arrive at the end of discussion and argument. The conditions of negotiation should be kept in mind to conduct the best negotiation process and settle any dispute that arises between two or more parties. The negotiator must identify the parties to the dispute to start a negotiation process. The parties to the negotiation should have a mutual interest in resolving the dispute, until and unless the parties have a mutual interest or a common objective or goal to settle the dispute, it has no reason to negotiate. The parties to the negotiation should be willing to negotiate and arrive at mutual position where both the parties to the dispute will be satisfied. When there arises a deadlock situation and no parties to the negotiation can arrive or s not willing to arrive and resolve the dispute, the parties must apply the process of BATNA (Best Alternative To a Negotiated Agreement). The negotiators will succeed in the process of negotiation when they have the authority to arrive at an agreement with the parties and bind the parties to the negotiation (Merrills 2017).

Negotiation is the process, which is based on situations and circumstances, and it goes through different set of phases. Negotiation does not have a structure but it cannot be said that no negotiation have a structure. Negotiations go through the phases of discovery of facts and parties position in settlement of dispute. The phases of negotiation include pre-negotiation, conceptualization, bargaining, and settlement. In the very first stage the parties must identify the shared interest in the settlement of dispute and select the medium of successful interaction. The parties must conceptualize, identify, and communicate each party’s position and understanding of the subject. The third stage of negotiation should bargain with the other party, establishes each other’s interest, and recommend for a solution. Finally, the parties reach at an mutual position by way of discussion, compromise and arrangement and reach to an agreement (Wang 2014).

Negotiation should be the first step in resolving the dispute between parties. Moreover, the benefits of choosing negotiation as the process of dispute resolution are that everyone is familiar with the process of negotiation. Even the parties to the dispute can settle the dispute with no other interference and has full control and autonomy over the decisions made by them. The process is flexible as the parties to the dispute can settle at any time and at any place and can be taken to any other forum if the dispute is not settled through negotiation. In case of negotiation takes place in a court the losing party has to pay an amount of conveyance to get the enforcement of a court order while in settlement through negotiation it is cost effective and need no enforcement of order the mutual agreement is not required to be enforced separately. Negotiation can take place at any time , it can take place during an arbitration proceeding or even after an decision is passed and the enforcement becomes costly (Fisher 2016). Negotiation is possible at any time and it is an alternative system of resolving dispute, which is currently in trend. The parties to the dispute should have willingness to conduct the negotiation as well as the desire to settle the dispute through negotiation and then only the negotiation will be successful. Thus, negotiation should be a problem solving approach and is mutually acceptable by the parties but it needs much openness and trust (Menkel and Schneider 2014).

Negotiation has its advantages on cost effectiveness. Negotiation is cost free and is familiar with general processes of life. Negotiation is the quickest form of the dispute resolution as the negotiator or the parties are familiar with the subject. Moreover, they have the ability to recognize and react quickly to the areas of dispute and can be resolved at its earliest. The parties to the negotiation meet face to face to discuss and communicate regarding the dispute and come to an agreement (Zwier 2013). This carries an advantage in aiding communication; familiarity with the subject enables quick decision-making and increases the chances of settlement. The process is flexible and the parties to the dispute do not have to depend on a third party for the discussion. Negotiations a can be conducted over telephone, video call which is time saving as well as cost effective. (Princen 2014).

We know that nothing is perfect and nothing remains perfect in this world. Negotiation is not an exception to the rule. The flexibility and cost effectiveness is the main weakness of negotiations (Lall 2014). Speed is always a positive approach for resolving dispute. However, if the parties could not judge the outcome of the discussion or settlement then the dispute can arise again. In the same way speed can also become an disadvantage to any of the parties to the settlement of dispute as the power in resolving the dispute ends with an unbalanced settlement. The party who hold the power in hand can influence the settlement, so it is necessary to have a regulation, which will guide the settlement of dispute and provide a fair solution. Moreover, the implementation of the solution or the enforcement of it is difficult as the settlement is not guided by a proper regulation. Negotiation can end at any time; parties to the negotiation can leave the process at any time. Personal and cultural differences may not successful in case of negotiation (Blake, Browne and Sime 2016).

Therefore, negotiation should be the first step towards resolution of the dispute. Disputes are settled quickly with cost effective means and having a flexible approach. However, the communication can be difficult if the parties do not understand the realistic position. Personal enmity or bad feelings from the past can restrict the smooth process of communication and compromise for the dispute settlement


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Merrills, J., 2017. International dispute settlement. Cambridge university press.

Wang, M., 2014. Are alternative dispute resolution methods superior to litigation in resolving disputes in international commerce?. Arbitration International, 16(2), pp.189-212.

Menkel-Meadow, C.J. and Schneider, A.K., 2014. Negotiation: Processes for Problem Solving. Wolters Kluwer Law & Business.

Princen, T., 2014. Intermediaries in international conflict. Princeton University Press.

Blake, S., Browne, J. and Sime, S., 2016. A practical approach to alternative dispute resolution. Oxford University Press.

Snyder, G.H. and Diesing, P., 2015. Conflict among nations: Bargaining, decision making, and system structure in international crises. Princeton University Press.

Fisher, R.J., 2016. Third party consultation: A method for the study and resolution of conflict. In Ronald J. Fisher: A North American Pioneer in Interactive Conflict Resolution (pp. 37-71). Springer International Publishing.

Lall, A.S. ed., 2014. Multilateral negotiation and mediation: instruments and methods. Elsevier.

Zwier, P.J., 2013. Principled negotiation and mediation in the international arena: talking with evil. Cambridge U

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