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A third party is an actor that attempts to assist the primary and secondary parties in a conflict to find a mutually satisfactory solution. Other terms are mediator, arbitrator, and go-between. The resort to third parties has become particularly common since the end of the cold war in 1991. There is some evidence that negotiated endings to armed conflicts are more likely to lead to an open society and more lasting security.

Third Parties in International Affairs

Article 33 of the United Nations (UN) Charter specifically mentions mediation as a way for peaceful settlements of disputes, in addition to fact-finding missions, arbitration and judicial settlement, and other means. Legal procedures, such as arbitration, differ from mediation in that they involve a prior commitment by the parties to ...

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