17 July 2012
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ICRtoP welcomes the appointment of Adama Dieng as
Special Adviser to the UN Secretary-General on the Prevention of Genocide
On 17 July 2012, the Spokesperson for the United Nations Secretary-General (UNSG) announced that Adama Dieng of Senegal has been appointed as Special Adviser to the UNSG on the Prevention of Genocide. Mr. Dieng will replace the current Special Adviser, Dr. Francis Deng of Sudan, who will be ending his five-year term at the end of July. This transition follows UNSG Ban Ki-moon’s January announcement to appoint new under and assistant secretary-generals after the completion of their terms.
ICRtoP is grateful to Dr. Deng for his efforts in the Joint Office of the Special Advisers on the Prevention of Genocide and the Responsibility to Protect. As Special Adviser, Dr. Deng refined the analysis framework to better understand factors and indicators of genocide, and worked with governments to emphasize the importance of managing identity and diversity to prevent conflict. He also worked with Special Adviser on the Responsibility to Protect Dr. Edward Luck to alert actors to potential or ongoing crises through statements and briefings, raise awareness and improve understanding of genocide prevention in regions around the world through public events and trainings, and contribute to related discourse within the UN and regional and sub-regional arrangements. Prior to his appointment as Special Adviser, Dr. Deng worked with Roberta Cohen and colleagues at the Brookings Institution to pioneer the idea of “sovereignty as responsibility”, which asserts that sovereignty involves the shouldering of responsibilities for the protection of populations within a state’s border and in the international community, an important conceptual forebear to the principles behind the Responsibility to Protect.
ICRtoP would like to extend its welcome to Mr. Adama Dieng in his new capacity as Special Adviser. UN News reported that, “As a legal and human rights expert, Mr. Dieng has a distinguished career in contributing to the strengthening of rule of law, fighting impunity and promoting capacity building in the area of judicial and democratic institutions, including through fact-finding missions, publications and media.” Mr. Dieng is currently serving his third term as Registrar of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), a position he has held since 2001. Before working with the ICTR, Mr. Dieng was the Secretary-General of the International Commission of Jurists, based in Geneva, and has served as the UN Independent Expert for Haiti and as Special Envoy of the UNSG to Malawi. Mr. Dieng was also highly involved in the creation of the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights. Read Adama Dieng’s full biography.
ICRtoP looks forward to working with Mr. Dieng and the staff of the Joint Office as we continue to consolidate support for the Responsibility to Protect and streamline action to prevent and respond to threats of mass atrocities.
Read more about the mandate of the Special Advisers on the Prevention of Genocide and the Responsibility to Protect and the work of the Joint Office. See then UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s 2004 letter (S/2004/567) to the UN Security Council announcing his decision to appoint the first Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and articulating the responsibilities of the post.
For more information, see the ICRtoP’s page on the Joint Office.