The 'Responsibility to Protect' and Syria: The International Community's Failure to Prevent Mass Atrocities (Again)

Kuwait International Law School Journal, Vol 1, Issue 4 (2013) pp13-67

56 Pages Posted: 6 Aug 2020

See all articles by Myra Williamson

Myra Williamson

University of Waikato; Kuwait International Law School

Date Written: May 1, 2013

Abstract

This paper addresses the Syrian revolution and in particular the failure of the international community to respond effectively. Part I outlines some aspects of the problem. Part II suggests some solutions, drawing upon norms of international law such as the “Responsibility to Protect” (also known as R2P, or RtoP). Part III examines the reality - it suggests that what is likely to happen is quite different from what ought to happen. The doctrine of a "Responsibility to Protect" seems to have been tested in the case of Syria and the international community has failed to rise to the occasion to save the lives of the Syrian people. The paper addresses how many attacks by the Syrian regime are aimed at civilian targets and have taken a huge toll on women and children in particular.

The paper was written in 2013 so the figures stated therein were current at the time of writing.

Keywords: Responsibility to Protect, R2P, RtoP, Syria, Syrian revolution, mass atrocities, Bashar Al Assad, Security Council veto, international law, public international law, terrorism, human rights, refugees, displacement, Syrian refugees, conflict, humanitarian intervention, human rights

JEL Classification: K33, K42

Suggested Citation

Williamson, Myra, The 'Responsibility to Protect' and Syria: The International Community's Failure to Prevent Mass Atrocities (Again) (May 1, 2013). Kuwait International Law School Journal, Vol 1, Issue 4 (2013) pp13-67, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3624667

Myra Williamson (Contact Author)

University of Waikato ( email )

New Zealand

Kuwait International Law School ( email )

Block 4, Building 800005
Doha City, Jahra 93151
Kuwait

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