For more than fifty years, the United Nations has been instrumental as a forum for the discussion and promotion of human rights. The treaties that have come into being under its guidance have defined the world''s conception of human rights. However, for the most part, the role of United Nations is relatively passive. Peace operations are the primary area in which the United Nations takes an active role in fulfilling its mandate as outlined in its Charter. As such, in these operations the UN has a duty to, as well as a significant interest in, maintaining the highest standards regarding the principles and norms it has helped to create. Human rights observance in peace operations is vital to the respect given human rights in the world, the reputation of the United Nations, and the long-term stability of the countries in which it intervenes.