4 October 2006
Responsibility to Protect Engaging Civil Society
[R2P Seminar at American University, R2P Workshops in West Africa]
We would like to inform you of three recent events which involved the participation or consultation of WFM-IGPs R2PCS program. If you would like more information about any of these events, please feel free to be in touch.
***THE RESPONSIBILITY TO PROTECT: THE CASE OF SUDAN***
WFM-IGPs Nicole Deller spoke at the American University in Washington on Friday, September 29.
Among the issues discussed by the panelists were the conceptual framework of the Responsibility to Protect, the complexities surrounding the Darfur conflict as well as the challenges to meaningfully implement the Responsibility to Protect.
In this context, panelists also discussed prospects for a comprehensive and sustainable peace in Sudan and the need to expand the peacekeeping mandate in the region to fulfill the Responsibility to Protect.
Workshop program and list of speakers:
Archived Video of the Conference: http://www.wcl.american.edu/humright/center/webcast.cfm#
***R2P WORKSHOPS IN WEST AFRICA***
14 September 2006: Bamako, Mali
18 September 2006: Abuja, Nigeria
In mid-September, WFM-IGP partnered with FEMNET-Mali and the West African Civil Society Forum (WACSOF) In Nigeria, to organize two one-day workshops on the Responsibility to Protect in Bamako, Mali and Abuja, Nigeria. The workshops introduced the norm to participants and led to the creation of two regional networks to advocate for the better understanding and use of R2P. There were over 50 participants at each event, including representatives of NGOs and NGO networks, government officials, UN officials, and local journalists.
A report of outcomes from the two workshops will be available on our website in the near future.
There were two articles written as a result of the Abuja meetings:
1) On 21 September, the United Nations International Day for Peace, the Institute Of Human Rights And Humanitarian Law (IHRHL) released a press statement calling on the Federal Government of Nigeria, specifically, and African governments in general to urgently embrace the new international norm of Responsibility to Protect also known as R2P. IHRHL attended the event in Abuja and decided to incorporate the concept into their work.
To read the full Press Statement, please see:
2) Abimbola Akosile, a journalist from Lagos present at the Abuja meeting, wrote a review of the meeting, a description of the R2P concept and the possibilities for Civil Society in West Africa. To read dequate Global Protection, Whose Responsibility? please see:
***59TH ANNUAL DPI/NGO CONFERENCE UMAN SECURITY: R2P AND PBC***
The 59th Annual DPI/NGO Conference - Human Security: Responsibility to Protect and Peacebuilding Commission was held on 7, September 2006. WFM-IGP was consulted by the organizers to help develop program content and arrange for speakers.
The Roundtable was introduced as follows:
One of the most significant achievements for human security in the 2005 World Summit was the affirmation of an international responsibility to protect populations from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity. By committing themselves to the responsibility to protect, governments accept that they must act earlier and more effectively in response to outbreaks of crises in their own countries or wherever they occur. The responsibility to protect is understood as a responsibility to prevent and rebuild, as well as to react.
This roundtable was convened to provide examples of how these goals can be achieved and what role civil society organizations play in ensuring that governments and civil society understand and implement this responsibility. The recently established Peacebuilding Commission was also discussed.
The conference included the following panelists:
- Sarah Sewall, Director, Carr Center for Human Rights Policy
- Augustine Philip Mahiga, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the United Republic of Tanzania
- Carolyn McAskie, Assistant-Secretary-General for Peacebuilding Support, Peacebuilding Commission
- Juan Mendez, Special Adviser to the Secretary-General on the Prevention of Genocide
- Eugenie Mukeshimana, Rwanda Genocide Survivor
- Edward Jombla, National Network Coordinator, Network on Collaborative Peacebuilding, Sierra Leone
To view relevant highlights recorded by R2PCS:
Archived Video of the Conference: