Abstract and Keywords
In March 2011, for the first time in its history, the responsibility to protect (R2P) principle was invoked by the UN Security Council while imposing coercive military measures against a UN Member State without its consent. However, neither the ferocity of the subsequent diplomatic debate around R2P, nor the intensity of the current crisis in post-Gadhafi Libya, should distract us from the fact that Resolutions 1970 and 1973 constituted an appropriate response to a complex mass atrocity situation. The problem was in the disputed implementation of the civilian protection mandate. This chapter argues that when prevention fails, most future R2P cases needing coercive responses, including military force, will continue to require both coercion and consent, with legal authorization of the Security Council and active dialogue about how a state can best uphold its responsibility to protect and how the international community can both assist and compel them to do so.
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