Please note! This event has been moved from 13 February to 9 March, 09:00-10:30.

The international intervention after the 2011 Libyan uprising against Muammar Gaddafi was initially considered a remarkable success: the UN Security Council’s first application of the ‘responsibility to protect’ doctrine; an impending civilian massacre prevented; and an opportunity for democratic forces to lead Libya out of a forty-year dictatorship. But such optimism was soon dashed.

Successive governments failed to establish authority over the ever-proliferating armed groups; divisions among regions and cities, Islamists and others, split the country into rival administrations and exploded into civil war; external intervention escalated.

Norway took part in the NATO operation in Libya and subsequently commissioned an evaluation of the Norwegian role: ‘Evaluering av norsk deltakelse i Libya-operasjonene i 2011.

In his book, All Necessary Measures?: The United Nations and International Intervention in Libya, Ian Martin offers his verdict on how the NATO mission unfolded, then unravelled.

Could it have been otherwise? Was it a justified response to the threat against civilians? What brought about the Security Council resolutions, including authorising military action? How did NATO act upon that authorisation? What role did Special Forces operations play in the rebels’ victory? Was a peaceful political settlement ever possible? What post-conflict planning was undertaken, and should or could there have been a major peacekeeping or stabilisation mission during the transition? Was the first election held too soon?

Ian Martin has led UN human rights and peace operations in countries including Rwanda, Timor-Leste, Nepal and Libya. A former Amnesty International secretary-general, in 2011–12 he was Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s post-conflict planning adviser, then UN support mission head, for Libya.

Nina Borgen (1974) is Deputy Director General in the Norwegian Ministry of Defence and currently Head of the Secretariat of the Norwegian Defence Commission. She has worked on a broad range of security policy issues since she started in the Ministry of Defence in 2001. She has extensive experience within international defence cooperation, international operations, NATO issues, High North and Russia policy. She has international experience from her years as a diplomat and Assistant Defence Counsellor at the Norwegian delegation to NATO Headquarters in Brussels (2006-2011) and Action Officer at NATOs International Secretariat (2011-2012). She has had different managerial positions since 2012, and experience from public investigation as Head of the Secretariat for Norway’s Libya Commission (2017-2019). Ms. Borgen received her B.A. from Science Po in Paris and her M.A. in international relations and strategic studies from the University of Oslo. She speaks English, French and some Russian.

Hajer Sharief  a Libyan peace activist. She co-leads the Together We Build It (TWBI) organization. An organization working to promote inclusive peace in Libya. Hajer is one of UN Women's 12 Champions on Women, Peace and Security and Human Rights. She is a member of the Extremely Together, an initiative by Kofi Annan and the Kofi Annan Foundation. In 2017, Hajer was appointed by the UN Secretary-General as a member to the advisory board for the progres study on youth peace and security as mandated by UNSCR 2250 on youth peace and security. In 2020, Forbes named Sharief as one of Africa's Most 50 Powerful Women. Currently, Hajer serves as a member of  UN Women Executive Director’s Advisory Board.

Cedric de Coning is a Research Professor in the Research group on peace, conflict and development at NUPI. He co-directs the NUPI Center on United Nations and Global Governance, and the Climate, Peace and Security Risk project. He coordinates the Effectiveness of Peace Operations Network (EPON) and contributes to the Training for Peace programme, the UN Peace Operations project (UNPO) and several others. He tweets at @CedricdeConing.

This seminar will be moderated by John Karlsrud.