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The Rise of the Responsibility to Protect

The Rise of the Responsibility to Protect

(p.171) Chapter Six The Rise of the Responsibility to Protect
Sovereignty and the Responsibility to Protect
Luke Glanville
University of Chicago Press

This chapter examines the emergence since the end of the Cold War of the principle that sovereignty entails a responsibility to protect populations from mass atrocities in the light of the historical story which the previous chapters have told. It considers developments in international consensus on the rights and responsibilities of sovereignty in the 1990s and it examines the intellectual foundations for a redefinition of sovereignty laid in this decade by Francis Deng who articulated a concept termed “sovereignty as responsibility,” and also Kofi Annan. It then turns to the emergence of the “responsibility to protect” concept in the early twenty-first century. While the ideas underpinning the “responsibility to protect” were by no means new, they had never before been so clearly endorsed by the society of states as they were at the UN World Summit in 2005. The chapter traces developments in international consensus on the accountability of sovereigns to the point that in 2011 the UN Security Council only for the first time authorised the use of force against a functioning sovereign state, Libya, without its consent, for the purpose of protecting civilians from mass atrocities.

Keywords:   Francis Deng, Kofi Annan, Libya, Mass Atrocities, Responsibility to Protect, Security Council, Sovereignty, Sovereignty as Responsibility, World Summit

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