Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Why Colonel Gaddafi must go

On 17th March 2011, the United Nations Security Council passed Resolution 1973, authorising the international community to take "all necessary measures" to protect civilian areas from assault by Libyan forces, while "excluding a foreign occupation force of any form on any part of Libyan territory".

On a number of levels, this resolution is historic, but perhaps the most important is the fact that it has, for the first time, given concrete expression to the UN-recognised doctrine of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P). Belatedly endorsed by the UN in 2006 as a response to the Rwandan Genocide, R2P holds that international intervention in the affairs of sovereign states is permissible if their rulers prove unable or unwilling to prevent humanitarian atrocities, or are complicit in causing them.


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