ICRtoP Listserv16 July 2010
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1. Eight Member States mention RtoP in Security Council Open Debate
1. Twenty-six NGOs publish joint report entitled ‘Renewing the Pledge: Re-Engaging the Guarantors to the Sudanese Comprehensive Peace Agreement’
2. Op-ed in the Guardian by ICC prosecutor Ocampo after second warrant of arrest against Omar Al-Bashir for counts of genocide
1. Minority Rights Group: The State of the World’s Minorities and Indigenous Peoples 2010
1. IRRI: July 21 in Kampala, Uganda: Peace and Security in Sudan: The Implications for Africa
2. Oxfam Australia/APR2P/ICRtoP-Nov 3-4 in Phnom Penh, Cambodia: Early Warning and Protection: Technologies and Practices for the Prevention of Mass Atrocities
1. Eight Member States mention RtoP in POC debate in the Security Council
Since the World Summit in 2005, semi-annual open debates of the Security Council on the protection of civilians have become a regular forum for States to refer to their support for RtoP. On 28 April 2006, the Security Council unanimously adopted Resolution 1674 on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict. Resolution 1674 contains the first official Security Council reference to the Responsibility to Protect. On 11 November 2009, during its eighth debate on the POC, the Security Council adopted Resolution 1894, in which where Member States expressed a continued commitment to RtoP.
See publication from the Global Centre for R2P on the links and differences between the Responsibility to Protect and the Protection of Civilians agenda: Policy brief on POC and RtoP.
The 9th Open Debate
On 7 July 2010, Members of the UN Security Council participated in the ninth open debate on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict. Forty Member States spoke during the proceedings, and eight States made specific reference to RtoP in their speeches. Italy mentioned its support for RtoP as “an instrument available to the international community to overcome crises”, and welcomed the upcoming informal interactive dialogue of the General Assembly on early warning and assessment planned for 23 July 2010 (ICRtoP will send further information on the dialogue on Monday). While Venezuela questioned whether RtoP had achieved the necessary consensus to become operational in the protection of civilians, Bangladesh re-emphasized how important the principle of RtoP was in preventing harm to civilians in armed conflict. Peru mentioned that the international community needed to focus on pillar I and II of the Responsibility to Protect, namely the responsibilities of the States and assisting the state with these responsibilities and capacity building. While Turkey and Sri Lanka underlined that RtoP and the protection of civilians in armed conflict were distinct initiatives that should not be compounded, the EU delegation recalled that “there is a clear linkage between them because, when populations are properly protected, they will not fall victim to genocide, war crimes, crime against humanity and ethnic cleansing”.
See all excerpts on RtoP from the debate.
Other Themes of the Debate
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, UN Under-Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs John Holmes, and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay also spoke at the debate.
They and Members States involved in the POC debate vocalized three main themes during the debate that are closely related to RtoP:
Click here to view the UN News Centre’s article on the debate.
See here our page on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict and on previous debates.
1. Renewing the Pledge: Re-Engaging the Guarantors to the Sudanese Comprehensive Peace Agreement
Joint report from 26 NGOs
15 July 2010
Executive Summary and Recommendations
The clock is ticking fast towards what might be the most important date in modern Sudanese history – two referenda in Sudan that are likely to result in the breakup of Africa’s largest state. With six months remaining until 9 January 2011, the scheduled date of the referenda, the run-up to, and outcome of, the vote must be managed with extreme care. The Guarantors to the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), who invested considerable effort in obtaining the CPA on 9 January 2005, have both a responsibility and an ability to help Sudan implement the CPA and prevent further conflict. It is imperative that the Guarantors urgently redouble their efforts to ensure adequate preparations for the referenda, and help secure agreements on sensitive issues such as border demarcation and oil sharing.
The experiences of recent years have demonstrated that focusing on one part of Sudan at the expense of another complicates the situation in both. Focusing too narrowly on the challenges of securing a peaceful post-CPA transition in Southern Sudan could backfire. The CPA Guarantors must not relegate the situation in Northern Sudan - especially the conflict in Darfur, where violence in May 2010 claimed the highest number of lives since 2008 - to the second tier of priorities.
As the Guarantors step up their political involvement, we hope to see generous donor support. More needs to be done now to bring in the requisite diplomatic, financial, and technical resources to put in place the requirements for the referenda and, after the vote, to improve Sudan’s stability and dire state of human development.
1. Use the upcoming Consultative Forum meeting in Khartoum on 17 July 2010 to agree to an urgent expansion of international efforts to prepare for peaceful, credible and timely referenda in Southern Sudan and Abyei.
2. Restate publicly, clearly and collectively the internationally recognized right of the people of Southern Sudan to self-determination. At the July 2010 AU Summit in Uganda, African Heads of State should reaffirm their unequivocal support for this right and pledge to recognize the outcomes of two free and fair referenda. The League of Arab States and the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) should follow suit, and be encouraged to do so by the Troika (US, UK and Norway) and the UN Secretary-General.
3. Appoint a high-level individual to travel to Abyei, Blue Nile, and Southern Kordofan consistently over the next six months to ensure adequate preparations for the referendum in Abyei and the popular consultations in Blue Nile and Southern Kordofan.
4. Call on the UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) to build up its civilian capacity in Abyei and facilitate inter-communal dialogue on the future of the area and call on the UN Development Program (UNDP) to consider extending its Southern Kordofan conflict prevention program to Abyei.
5. Persuade the National Congress Party of Sudan (NCP) and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM ), the two parties to the CPA , to make public commitments that the rights to freedom of movement, residence and property currently afforded to all Sudanese citizens will be preserved regardless of the outcome of the referenda.
6. Provide technical assistance to the CPA parties to reach an equitable agreement on oil sharing, to be backed up by independent third party monitoring.
7. Encourage UNMIS to carry out a careful assessment of its civilian protection capabilities, including identification of the weakest links, leading to preventive UNMIS deployments in flashpoint areas to deter future violence.
8. State clearly and publicly that international human rights standards must be respected in Northern as well as in Southern Sudan, and that the Guarantors will uphold their commitment to the goals of democratic transformation in Sudan.
9. Call on the African Union/UN Hybrid operation in Darfur (UNAM ID) to focus on its primary objective of protecting civilians and to increase and make public its human rights reporting.
10. Call on donors to Sudan to revisit the present plan to hold a large donor conference only after the announcement of the referenda results and consider additional closed-door resource mobilization meetings to ensure adequate resources are available in time. Guarantors should encourage investment in renewed South-South dialogue, conflict prevention and strengthening local peace-building capacities.
2. Now end this Darfur denial
15 July 2010
On 12 July, Pre-Trial Chamber I of the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued a second warrant of arrest against the President of Sudan, Omar Hassan Ahmad Al Bashir, considering that there are reasonable grounds to believe him responsible for three counts of genocide committed against the Fur, Masalit and Zaghawa ethnic groups, that include: genocide by killing, genocide by causing serious bodily or mental harm and genocide by deliberately inflicting on each target group conditions of life calculated to bring about the group’s physical destruction. Click here to read the full ICC Press Release.
No more excuses. No more denial. This week, the international criminal court issued an arrest warrant for three charges of genocide against the president of Sudan, Omar al-Bashir. The world once claimed ignorance of the Nazi atrocities. Fifty years later, the world refused to recognise an unfolding genocide in Rwanda. On Darfur, the world is now officially on notice.
The genocide is not over. Bashir's forces continue to use different weapons to commit genocide: bullets, rape and hunger. For example, the court found that Bashir's forces have raped on a mass scale in Darfur. They raped thousands of women and used these rapes to degrade family and community members. (…) The court also found that Bashir is deliberately inflicting on the Fur, Masalit and Zaghawa ethnic groups living conditions calculated to bring about their physical destruction. Millions of Darfuris are living in camps for displaced persons and, at the disposal of Bashir's forces, experiencing an ongoing genocide. They are helpless, voiceless and with no hope for the future. Darfuris need other voices to help end a genocide that should have been stopped years ago. We can still stop it but we must stop it now. The court's recent decision could provide a last chance for the world to react properly, to transform "never again" from a promise into a reality.
Bashir will not provide the solution. He has officially denied the genocide, the rapes, the camp conditions and his responsibility for them. He announces investigations that are never conducted and makes peace agreements that result in new attacks. At the same time, he expels humanitarian aid workers, cutting off subsistence from millions of victims. He is also laying the groundwork for new crimes against Darfuris and against the south of Sudan.
Bashir used Ahmad Harun, as minister of state for the interior, to co-ordinate genocidal attacks on villages; he later used Harun, as minister of state for humanitarian affairs, to control genocidal conditions in the camps. Harun's current role as governor of South Kordofan could indicate an intention to continue using him as a future crimes co-ordinator.
Bashir is attacking Sudanese citizens, the same people he has the duty to protect. Now the international community has a new opportunity to provide protection. There are countries that are not members of the treaty that created the ICC, but which are members of the genocide convention. The convention could apply in this situation, triggering the responsibility of these states to prevent and to suppress the acts of genocide. Humanity has a responsibility to protect the Darfuris.
As the prosecutor of the ICC, my mandate is to ensure justice for these Darfuris, the victims of genocide. Our evidence and our conclusions should be taken into consideration by the United Nations security council.
The UN security council, in charge of international peace and security, referred the Darfur situation to the ICC. Today, the council is holding a debate on international peace and security, which intends to focus on Africa. The council, which extensively reviewed its failure to act in Rwanda, should grab this opportunity.
Arresting a head of state requires a consensus among the political elite. It is a matter of will. If all the UN security council members are in agreement the genocide will stop, "never again" will be a reality.
The Darfuris do not have the luxury of time. Their last chance is now.
Click here to read the full story.
1. The State of the World’s Minorities and Indigenous Peoples 2010
Minority Rights Group International:
1 July 2010
On 1 July 2010, Minority Rights Group International released its annual report on the State of the World’s Minorities and Indigenous People. Focusing on religious minorities, the report finds that minority groups continue to confront serious violations of their rights around the globe. In Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Latin America, armed conflict and land seizures have forced minority and indigenous communities away from locations central to their religious beliefs.
The Report offers a comprehensive overview of the situation faced by minorities in a world increasingly divided along religious lines. It includes:
Click here to download the full PDF report.
1. July 21, 2010: Peace and Security in Sudan: The Implications for Africa
The International Refugee Rights Initiative and the Darfur Consortium
Peace and Security in Sudan: The Implications for Africa
21 July: 3-4 pm
Africana Hotel, Plot 2-4 Wampewo Ave
This panel discussion, to take place during the African Union Summit in Kampala, will provide a space for leading Sudanese activists and lawyers to highlight the most essential areas where progress must be made towards a sustainable peace for all of Sudan. In the context of the AU’s “year of peace and security” and its position as the lead international actor across the political and security spheres, there is no more important time for immediate and decisive action. Panelists will focus on the regional implications of further violence in Sudan – both in the context of the north/south and the referendum, as well as Darfur.
Panelists will include:
The panel will be moderated by Dismas Nkunda, the CO-Chair of Darfur Consortium.
Two Reports will be Presented:
2. November 3-4, 2010: Conference on Early Warning and Protection: Technologies and Practices for the Prevention of Mass Atrocity Crimes
Oxfam Australia, APCR2P, ICRtoP
3-4 November, 8.45am–5.30pm
Crystal Ballroom, Phnom Penh Hotel
53 Monivong Boulevard, Phnom Penh
This conference will be hosted by Oxfam Australia in concert with and the Asia-Pacific Centre for the Responsibility to Protect and the International Coalition for RtoP.
This conference will bring together both technology and early-warning specialists, and members of the international humanitarian community concerned with the protection of vulnerable populations and the prevention of mass atrocity crimes. These will include specialists from the UN and regional organisations, non-government organisations, scholars, government representatives and affected communities.
The conference will explore a number of issues:
Dr Francis Deng, Special Advisor to the United Nations Secretary General for the Prevention of Genocide
Mr Patrick Meier, Director of Crisis Mapping, Ushahidi
Click here to learn more about the event and register.
Thanks to Evan Cinq-Mars for compiling this listserv