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Stability and protection

Fragile states are characterised by weak state structures, weak internal cohesion and abject inequality. Fragility and conflicts hinder development and poverty reduction, create or worsen humanitarian crises and are breathing grounds for instability and migration.

Denmark will:

  • Strengthen efforts for conflict prevention with emphasis on reducing tension, strengthen dialogue and mediation, promote human rights and the protection of civilians. 
  • Place state and peace building at the centre of efforts in fragile states through the promotion of legitimate governance and increased cohesion in society. 
  • Strengthen efforts for poverty reduction, social development, growth and employment creation in fragile states. 
  • Work for more effective whole of government interventions which are tailor-made and locally rooted in fragile states based on ”The New Deal” and the Peacebuilding and Statebuilding Goals.
  • Mitigate humanitarian needs and contribute to the protection of those affected by conflict, crises and disasters in full respect of the humanitarian principles of humanity, impartiality, neutrality and independence.
  • Strengthen resilience among vulnerable groups and our efforts to prevent disasters. 
  • Strengthen cooperation with and among regional and multilateral organisations, in particular the UN, in fragile and conflict affected states and work to operationalize the R2P principles.

Ensuring stability and protection is a major global challenge. Denmark will therefore engage actively and strengthen its efforts for conflict prevention, stabilisation and reconstruction in fragile and conflict affected states. We will do this in collaboration with the countries themselves and through regional and multilateral organisations that are able to use mediation and dialogue to prevent conflicts from breaking out or deteriorate.

Denmark’s interventions will build on what works in fragile states and be based on the four principles of the rights based approach to development. Democratic state building and local ownership are preconditions for lasting results in fragile states and Denmark will work to promote legitimate governance and increased cohesion in society through, among others, multilateral organisations and through the involvement of local actors and civil society.

Meeting the basic needs of the population, like access to drinking water, food, education, health and employment, is an important element in efforts to preserve the legitimacy of the state. It is the responsibility of local authorities to deliver these services, but in fragile and conflict affected states local authorities are often unable to provide such services. Denmark will therefore support interventions, which promote employment and provides alternatives to violence and conflict and which ensure that social services are delivered.

Experiences show that whole of government and coordinated approaches contribute to more effective interventions in fragile states. Security is a precondition for development and development is a precondition for lasting peace and stability. Denmark is working for a stronger coordination of stabilisation, peacebuilding and development interventions in order to ensure more effective planning, dialogue, coordination, and mobilisation of all instruments and actors in fragile and conflict affected states. Coordination with humanitarian interventions must take place within the framework of the fundamental humanitarian principles of humanity, impartiality, neutrality and independence. Through active engagement in the International Dialogue on Peacebuilding and Statebuilding, Denmark will strengthen dialogue with all actors and partners with the aim of promoting coordinated international efforts based on the five Peacebuilding and Statebuilding Goals from the New Deal for Engagement in Fragile States. 

The aim of Denmark’s humanitarian interventions is the protection of the most vulnerable, not least refugees and internally displaced in their immediate vicinity. Our humanitarian interventions are not subject to security or foreign policy goals. We will work for a stronger coherence (sammenhæng) between our humanitarian support and long-term development cooperation and place emphasis on early reconstruction as an integrated part of our efforts.

Fragile states differ from each other and the causes of conflict and fragility are many. Therefore, all Danish interventions will depend on the local context. Denmark cannot lift this large task alone either. The international community must resume the joint responsibility. In each country and globally, Denmark will cooperate closely with relevant regional and multilateral organisations in order to strengthen the joint capacity for conflict prevention, peace-keeping and peace-building and for reconstruction.


Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark
Asiatisk Plads 2 
DK-1448 Copenhagen K
Tel. +45 33 92 00 00
Fax +45 32 54 05 33