The United Nations and the Responsibility to Protect
Edward C. Luck
Policy Analysis Brief
The 2005 World Summit’s adoption of the responsibility to protect was an historic step in the evolution of human rights and humanitarian law. Much attention is focused on one aspect—forceful intervention—that creates political firestorms. However, responsibility to protect is richer, deeper, and more varied than forceful intervention. Much of what was articulated in the World Summit Outcome Document is not politically contentious, but rather requires further conceptual development and capacity-building. This brief addresses the conceptual underpinnings of the responsibility to protect, the political importance of it, and the steps that need to be taken to make it operational.
Read "Actualizing the Responsibility to Protect," the report of the Stanley Foundation's 43rd Conference on the United Nations of the Next Decade.
Listen to audio from "The United Nations and the Responsibility to Protect," an October 2, 2008, event featuring Edward C. Luck. Part 1 (MP3). Part 2 (MP3).
In the newest issue of Courier, we see China through the eyes of Jan Fear, one of our Catherine Miller Explorer Awards winners. Two experts argue about the effectiveness of the G-20 as a multilateral venue, and we talk to Jennifer Welsh, the newly appointed UN special adviser on the Responsibility to Protect (R2P). Finally, author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie answers questions about the connection between literature and war.
Our bimonthly newsletter highlights new policy analysis about preventing nuclear terrorism as well as stopping mass atrocities before they start. And we pay tribute to Ambassador Richard Williamson—a member of the Stanley Foundation’s Advisory Council since 2005—who passed away on December 8.
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This Now Showing event-in-a-box toolkit Before the Killing Begins: The Politics of Mass Violence considers how early preventive strategies by governments and the international community should build much-needed capacities within countries, and make it harder for leaders to resort to violence. It aims to encourage discussion of how future efforts might better protect populations under threat, giving new resolve to the promise of never again. Sign Up
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