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The responsibility to protect - Har en opinio juris utvecklats kring principen om Skyldighet att skydda?

Karlsson, Terese (2014) LAGF03 20141
Faculty of Law
Department of Law
Abstract
Responsibility to Protect (R2P) is a principle that is always up for discussion, and has been since it was first mentioned in the ICISS report from 2001, which was issued as a consequence of that rhetorical question that Secretary General Kofi Annan asked about the genocide that occurred in Rwanda and Srebrenica in the 1990s. He questioned how we should react to systematic violations of Human Rights, to a new Rwanda or Srebrenica, if humanitarian intervention is to be considered an unacceptable assault on state sovereignty? R2P aims to fill the gaps in humanitarian intervention, to give the outside world the opportunity to intervene in conflicts where there may not be a matter of international peace and security, but rather a question of... (More)
Responsibility to Protect (R2P) is a principle that is always up for discussion, and has been since it was first mentioned in the ICISS report from 2001, which was issued as a consequence of that rhetorical question that Secretary General Kofi Annan asked about the genocide that occurred in Rwanda and Srebrenica in the 1990s. He questioned how we should react to systematic violations of Human Rights, to a new Rwanda or Srebrenica, if humanitarian intervention is to be considered an unacceptable assault on state sovereignty? R2P aims to fill the gaps in humanitarian intervention, to give the outside world the opportunity to intervene in conflicts where there may not be a matter of international peace and security, but rather a question of the protection of civilians in the conflict area exposed to threats and gross violations of human rights. As the norm is relatively new, there are questions about implementation and definitions of terms and thresholds to be reached for a crime to be considered to fall within the limits of the scope of R2P.
The question that I intend to answer in my paper is whether there is a consensus, an opinio juris, in terms of R2P. Opinio Juris in itself is a rather abstract concept, which existence can proved by studying State action or non-action, resolutions adopted on the matter, statements that express an attitude towards the principle or through resolutions and ratification of documents. In addition to this you should also determine whether the actions taken are because of a belief that it is in accordance with international law.
I have studied resolutions, documents, statements and actions in crises in which it has been referred to R2P, to see if I can discern a pattern in the way the international community acts in crises where mass atrocities are committed and where civilians are heavily exposed.
My conclusion is that opinio juris does in fact exist regarding the R2P concept, the international community act as if they believe that there is indeed an internationally binding norm to do so. But the principle in itself is in conflict with the definitions of the offenses covered by the responsibility to protect. Discussions still prevents intervention in many conflicts because of the difficulty to determine whether atrocities really is taking place. After the NATO intervention in Libya it has been heavily discussed how to intervene in a proper way. Even clearer definitions and thresholds must be established to sort out these problems. (Less)
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author
Karlsson, Terese
supervisor
organization
course
LAGF03 20141
year
type
M2 - Bachelor Degree
subject
keywords
R2P, Responsibility to protect, mänskliga rättigheter
language
Swedish
id
4589361
date added to LUP
2014-09-10 14:15:31
date last changed
2014-09-10 14:15:31
@misc{4589361,
  abstract     = {Responsibility to Protect (R2P) is a principle that is always up for discussion, and has been since it was first mentioned in the ICISS report from 2001, which was issued as a consequence of that rhetorical question that Secretary General Kofi Annan asked about the genocide that occurred in Rwanda and Srebrenica in the 1990s. He questioned how we should react to systematic violations of Human Rights, to a new Rwanda or Srebrenica, if humanitarian intervention is to be considered an unacceptable assault on state sovereignty? R2P aims to fill the gaps in humanitarian intervention, to give the outside world the opportunity to intervene in conflicts where there may not be a matter of international peace and security, but rather a question of the protection of civilians in the conflict area exposed to threats and gross violations of human rights. As the norm is relatively new, there are questions about implementation and definitions of terms and thresholds to be reached for a crime to be considered to fall within the limits of the scope of R2P. 	
The question that I intend to answer in my paper is whether there is a consensus, an opinio juris, in terms of R2P. Opinio Juris in itself is a rather abstract concept, which existence can proved by studying State action or non-action, resolutions adopted on the matter, statements that express an attitude towards the principle or through resolutions and ratification of documents. In addition to this you should also determine whether the actions taken are because of a belief that it is in accordance with international law. 
I have studied resolutions, documents, statements and actions in crises in which it has been referred to R2P, to see if I can discern a pattern in the way the international community acts in crises where mass atrocities are committed and where civilians are heavily exposed. 
My conclusion is that opinio juris does in fact exist regarding the R2P concept, the international community act as if they believe that there is indeed an internationally binding norm to do so. But the principle in itself is in conflict with the definitions of the offenses covered by the responsibility to protect. Discussions still prevents intervention in many conflicts because of the difficulty to determine whether atrocities really is taking place. After the NATO intervention in Libya it has been heavily discussed how to intervene in a proper way. Even clearer definitions and thresholds must be established to sort out these problems.},
  author       = {Karlsson, Terese},
  keyword      = {R2P,Responsibility to protect,mänskliga rättigheter},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {The responsibility to protect - Har en opinio juris utvecklats kring principen om Skyldighet att skydda?},
  year         = {2014},
}