Guerilla diplomacy, also known as unconventional diplomacy, refers to diplomatic activities that involve unconventional and informal approaches, tactics, and strategies to achieve diplomatic objectives. The term ‘guerrilla’ is borrowed from guerrilla warfare, which is characterised by irregular and unconventional methods of combat.
In the context of diplomacy, guerilla diplomacy typically involves diplomats and other actors using innovative and non-traditional means to engage with foreign governments, organisations, and individuals. It often focuses on bypassing traditional diplomatic channels and protocols to establish direct contact and build relationships. Guerilla diplomats may employ various tools and methods, such as personal networks, social media, grassroots campaigns, public diplomacy, cultural exchanges, and unofficial backchannel communications.
The aim of guerilla diplomacy is to overcome traditional diplomatic barriers, increase dialogue and understanding, and advance diplomatic objectives in creative and flexible ways. It can be particularly useful in situations where traditional diplomatic channels are ineffective or restricted.
However, it is important to note that guerilla diplomacy operates within the broader framework of diplomatic relations and international law. While it may involve unconventional methods, it is still subject to the principles and norms that govern diplomatic conduct.