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Diplomacy, a word derived from the Greek word “diploma” which is an official document emanating from princes; a diploma is understood to be a document by which a privilege is conferred. Some scholars have argued that the origin of diplomacy is hard to trace. According to them, the major subject of concern in the field of diplomacy has been its practice, rather than its origins (Der Deriam, 1987:2). Diplomacy as predicating the art of representation and representation is as old as human society itself. Nicolson (1969:6) argues that even in pre-history there must have come moments when one group of savages wished to negotiate with another group of savages, if only for the purpose of indicating, that they had had enough of the day‟s battle and would like a pause in which to collect their wounded, and to bury their dead. The fact that these savages did not spend all their time fighting, in Nicolson‟s view, is diplomacy. The nature and the nearness to one another of the numerous Greek city/states encouraged the development of inter-state relations. The political and commercial relations among the states gave rise to the cause of the states they represented in the popular assemblies of the other city-states. These intermediaries or „pourpaleurs‟ as they were called had to be orators and they enjoyed certain privileges and immunities such as the inviolability of their person.

Diplomacy in the era of the Greeks was far from perfect. Ambassadors were appointed on an ad-hoc basis and for specific purpose. This led to the appointment of many ambassadors from a state to another at the same time. The contributions of the Romans, to the development of diplomacy were more in theory, in the realm of international law, than in practice. Their determination to impose “Pax Romana” on the world meant the ascendancy of force over diplomacy. In spite of this, however, the idea of appointing people with very high status


started with them. Renaissance diplomacy was introduced which increased the functions of ambassadors. They were no longer political emissaries but also commercial agents. They needed to gather general information relating to the political, social and economic activities of the state to which they were accredited. Renaissance diplomacy suffered serious shortcomings. There was no agreed order of precedence, either in presenting credentials or in signing treaties, and each of these activities often led to unseemly wrangles, sometimes resulting into physical combat. Besides, it was noted for its immorality. Ambassadors were not paid well, yet they had to cater for their staff. They often had to resort into bribery, pinching and converting funds into their own pockets.

After the congress of Vietnam in 1815 the array of the shortcomings of Renaissance diplomacy were removed. The Regalement of 19 March, 1815 and the subsequent regulation of the congress of Aix-la-Chapelle settled the issue of precedence and the hierarchy of diplomatic representation. Precedence was no longer based on the prestige and status of an ambassadors sovereign but on the priority of the ambassador‟s appointment.(Olusola Ojo, Amadu Sesay,1988:203). However, ancient Greece and Roman history and literature are replete with records and references to “diplomatic” activities. The growing interdependence of states as well as the two World Wars have shaped and continue to affect the development of diplomacy. The common features of diplomacy in the contemporary system includes; “open”, “parliamentary” and “multilateral diplomacy”. Open diplomacy means the negotiations and discussions carried out in handling affairs without arousing hostility. It is usually carried on with free access to interested observers and members of the press. It refers to the art and practice of conducting negotiations between nations.

Multilateral diplomacy can be defined as the practice of involving more than two nations or parties in achieving diplomatic situations to supranational problems (Kishore Mahbubani, 2013). Multilateral diplomacy also known as “conference diplomacy” involves relations


between more than two states. Within the European system of states, there were multilateral conferences related to peace settlement or congress in the 17th century. Multilateral diplomacy began in its modern form in the early 19th century, following the end of the Napoleonic wars, congress of Vienna in 1815. Multilateral diplomacy blossomed in the 20th century because they were essential to the conducts of negotiation when states became too numerous. Multilateral diplomacy brings together all the parties whose agreement is necessary. Multilateral diplomacy also holds its popularity to the fact that conferences in the European system of that time were essentially conferences of the great powers. It was a device for identifying and advertising membership of the great power club, but small states were also allowed to attend if their vital interests were concerned but they were usually condemned to margins. Conference diplomacy also became popular because it also gives impetus to bilateral diplomacy in two ways (Tunji, 2014). Hence, a multilateral conference can provide opportunities for participants to discuss matters outside the formal agenda. For example: (a) A conference at the UN is an opportunity for states to hold bilateral talk (b) Powerful mediators can hold a multilateral conference to kick-start under “discreet cover” a series of essentially bilateral negotiations.

The types of multilateral diplomacy includes: plurilateral diplomacy, para-diplomacy, parliamentary diplomacy, conference diplomacy, and associative diplomacy to mention but a few. In conclusion, multilateral diplomacy is challenging and often underappreciated. The dynamics are often more complex because one is dealing with multiple players. Following from the forgoing, in contemporary times, the machinery of diplomacy is made up of two components. First, there is the home government ministry called various names in various countries. In Nigeria, it is called the Ministry of Foreign affairs‟, in Britain, it is called the Foreign Office, and in the United States, it is called the Department of State. The second is the numerous diplomatic missions abroad, the embassies and the high commissions and


consulates. The diplomatic mission which is the centre of all diplomatic activity is headed by an Ambassador which is the eyes, ears and mouth of the ministry of external affairs. Hence, the functions of diplomats can be divided into four broad categories: negotiation, representation, reporting and protection of national interest and subjects. A good diplomat is sported with the following qualities: Specialist knowledge, professional skills and Personal qualities (Tunji, 2014).

On the other hand, the term conflict in international relations generally refers to armed conflict (Goldstein and Pevehouse, 2010:157). Conflict is the universal framework of the society. Its origin is derived from: economic differentiation, social change, cultural formation, psychological development and political organization. Conflicts are dynamic as they escalate and de-escalate and are constituted by a complex interplay of attitudes and behaviors that can assume a reality of their own. Conflicts have been variously defined in relations to fights, games and To some people, conflict has been used to refer both to „consensual‟ conflicts over interests (disputants want the same thing) and to „dissension‟ conflict over values (disputants do not want the same thing) (Aubert, 1963 In Oliver et al, 2012: 9); others however have called the former „disputes‟ that require settlement and have reserved the term conflict for deeper struggles over unsatisfied human needs that require resolution (Burton, 1990a in Oliver Ramsbotham, Tom Woodhouse, Hugh Miall 2012: 9). Conflict is defined as an irreconcilable contention between two or more parties such as political ideologies, religious differences ethnic and social differences. Likewise, conflict management is the effective ways to deal with conflict, peacemaking, negotiation skills and all aspects of influential communication.

Conflict resolution started in the 1950s and 1960s. This was at the height of the Cold War, when the development of nuclear weapons and the conflict between the superpowers seemed to threaten human survival (Oliver et al 2012: 4). In 1980, conflict resolution ideas were


increasingly making a difference in real conflicts. Examples of countries where conflict resolutions ideas were making a difference as at 1980 include South Africa, Middle East and Northern Ireland. As a result of this development, war-torn regions of Africa and South-East Asia, development workers and humanitarian agencies were seeing the need to take account of conflict resolution as an integral part of their activities.(oliver Ramsbotham, Tom woodhouse, Hugh Miall 2012: 4)

Conflict management is the process of limiting the negative aspects of conflict while increasing the positive aspects of conflict. The aim of conflict management is to enhance learning and group outcomes, including effectiveness or performance in organizational setting (Ra him 2002: 208 retrieved January 3rd, 2015). The inevitability of conflict whose history can be traced to the beginning of mankind/creation has shaped us into what we are and who we are today. Conflict also has it basis from the disparity between social classes: the “haves” and the “have-nots.” It is however, universally admitted that despite the shortcomings of diplomacy and its methods, it has been historically proven that no other firm basis for the settlement of differences has so far been invented to replace diplomacy. Wars, blockades, and other methods of coercion like sanctions employed at times, have proved to lead to dead ends that diplomats are once again called to solve.

In the field of „Peace and conflict management” diplomacy in relation to conflict management can be likened to the concept of “Non violence Resistance” It is considered to be the art of the feasible, because it embodies the elements of understanding, convention and compromise which are the only elements normally leading to the finding of solutions and ensure for people the much desired peace, via the conjunction of common interests and away from inopportune publicity an chauvinistic loud tones and rivalries that surely lead to conflicts, particularly in areas characterized by the lack of balance in the post-bipolar era. Since the end of the Cold War the international community through international institutions


has been focusing on preventive diplomacy whose action is to prevent disputes from arising between parties, to prevent existing disputes from escalating into conflicts and to limit the spread of the latter when they occur. By and large, the concepts of Diplomacy and conflict management are inseparable and interrelated concepts. In the context of this project, Diplomacy shall be critically examined broadly in conflict management and specifically in the Russia and Ukraine crisis.


The Russia-Ukraine crisis over Crimea has its basis to the aftermath of the orange revolution. The crisis is an international crisis majorly involving Russia and Ukraine over the Crimea. Crimea peninsula was never historically a part of Ukraine, Its population was Tatar. It was invaded and annexed by Russia in 18th century. In 1940-s, the Soviets expelled all Tatar population from Crimea, Only after collapse of Soviet Union they were permitted to return. Crimea was administratively joined with Ukraine only in the second half of 20th century. Most of the non-Tatar population is Russian. Crimean Peninsula is controlled by the Russian Federation, a status which is not recognized by the United Nations. Crimea is populated by an ethnic Russian majority and a minority of both ethnic Ukrainians and Crimean Tatars. Prior to the crisis, Crimea comprised Ukraine's Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the administratively separate municipality of Sevastopol. The Russian Federation has organized them as the Crimean Federal District.

The crisis unfolded in the aftermath of the Ukrainian Revolution. On 21 February 2014 President Viktor Yanukovych of Ukraine fled Kiev, the capital. The Ukrainian parliament deposed him the next day, and the next week appointed an interim President ( Arseniy Yatsenyuk), and formed an interim government which was recognized by the United States and the European union. Beginning on February 26, pro-Russian forces began to gradually take control of the Crimean peninsula. While troops occupied or guarde

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