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The UN General Assembly held a plenary meeting on the “Responsibility to Protect (R2P) and the prevention of genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity” on 25 June and 2 July 2018 as part of the formal agenda of its 72nd session. The debate constituted the first formal consideration of R2P by the General Assembly since 2009. One regional organization (European Union) and 79 member states made statements on behalf of 113 countries.
Today, 25 June, the UN General Assembly will hold a debate on “The Responsibility to Protect (R2P) and the prevention of genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity” as part of the Formal Agenda of its 72nd session. Today’s debate constitutes the first formal discussion of R2P by the UN General Assembly since 2009 and reflects the consensus that has been built throughout the past decade regarding the importance of preventing atrocities, despite setbacks and differences of opinion regarding effective implementation.
On this International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers, the Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect pays tribute to peacekeepers deployed around the world and recognizes the sacrifice of those who have lost their lives in the service of peace and the protection of civilians.
Today, 15 September, the UN General Assembly voted by 113 to 21 to include a supplementary item entitled “The Responsibility to Protect and the prevention of genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity” on the Formal Agenda for its 72nd session. The Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect commends the General Assembly for this decision and for embracing a substantive discussion on the norm of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P). We would also like to congratulate Australia and Ghana for their leadership of this initiative.
The Government of the State of Qatar, in association with the Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect (R2P), co-hosted the seventh annual meeting of the Global Network of R2P Focal Points in Doha, Qatar, from 24 to 25 April. This was the first meeting of the Global Network to take place in the Middle East region. The meeting brought together senior government officials from more than 40 countries as well as representatives from the European Union and United Nations.
The ninth report of the United Nations Secretary-General on the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) highlights the importance of strengthening accountability for the implementation of R2P and the prevention of mass atrocity crimes. This is the first report on R2P by the new Secretary-General, António Guterres, and it highlights how R2P fits within his wider prevention agenda. The report asserts that a new approach to international peace and security, including atrocity prevention, is needed.
Today the Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect celebrates the World Day for International Justice. Holding perpetrators of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes accountable for their actions plays an essential role in delivering justice for victims of mass atrocity crimes and preventing their recurrence. Every state, and the international community as a whole, has a role to play in this historic battle against impunity.
Today, 2 June 2017, the United Nations General Assembly elected Côte d’Ivoire, Equatorial Guinea, Kuwait, Peru and Poland to the UN Security Council for 2018-2019. The Netherlands was also elected for 2018. With their election, 8 of the 15 members of the Council in 2018 are “Friends of the Responsibility to Protect” – having appointed an R2P Focal Point and/or joined the Group of Friends of R2P in New York and Geneva.
An Open Letter to UN Secretary-General António Guterres
As organizations working to protect the rights of children in armed conflict, we are dismayed by your reported decision to “freeze” any new additions of parties to conflict that commit grave violations of children’s rights to the annexes to your 2017 annual report to the United Nations Security Council on children and armed conflict. We urge you to reconsider, and issue an updated list with your report, including all perpetrators responsible for patterns of grave violations against children in 2016.
On February 8, the UN General Assembly held an informal meeting marking the 20th Anniversary of Resolution 51/77 (1997) on the promotion and protection of the rights of children. This resolution established the mandate of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict (SRSG-CAAC). In his opening remarks, President of the General Assembly, H.E. Mr. Peter Thomson, called the resolution “a landmark development in our global efforts to improve the protection of children in conflict situations.” A high-level panel discussion was moderated by SRSG-CAAC Ms.
Yesterday, 27 January, United States President Donald Trump signed an executive order banning all refugees, migrants and visitors from seven Muslim-majority countries – Libya, Iran, Iraq, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. The ban is grievously discriminatory, effectively targeting and blocking lawful entry into the United States to people on the basis of religion, a practice that is explicitly outlawed in the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965.
Civil Society Statement to the UN Human Rights Council's 26th Special Session regarding South Sudan
Tomorrow marks a terrible anniversary for South Sudan. On December 15, 2013, fighting in Juba ignited a brutal conflict that has torn the country apart, leaving millions of South Sudanese in dire need. Today the country stands on a precipice.
by Dr. Simon Adams, Executive Director, Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect
The Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect regrets the recent decisions of Burundi, South Africa and Gambia to withdraw from the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC). These declarations of intent to withdraw from the ICC undermine progress made in establishing that any person, regardless of rank or high office, can be held accountable for perpetrating mass atrocity crimes committed anywhere in the world.
On 21 September, the Republic of Rwanda, Italy and the Kingdom of the Netherlands co-hosted the 9th Annual Ministerial Roundtable Discussion on the Responsibility to Protect (R2P), “The Kigali Principles on the Protection of Civilians and the Responsibility to Protect,” in association with the Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect.
The eighth report of the United Nations SecretaryGeneral on the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) provides a vision for collective action to accelerate implementation of R2P amid an impending leadership change at the UN. The report is a follow-up to the 2015 report, which took stock of progress in implementing R2P ten years after its unanimous endorsement by all UN member states at the 2005 World Summit.
What is the responsibility to protect and why do we need it?
The Responsibility to Protect (R2P) has many sources: the rise of international humanitarian law starting with the Geneva Conventions in the late nineteenth century and accelerating in the period after World War II; and the profound sense of revulsion at the failure of the international community to act effectively in Rwanda and Bosnia. The need for a broadly accepted new norm to guide the international response to mass atrocity crimes became increasingly apparent.