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date: 19 June 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The responsibility to protect is central to the current policy debate on humanitarian intervention in war zones, and so it is instructive to explore its immediate post-Cold War origins in the decade preceding the December 2001 release of the report by the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty. The history of the turbulent decade of the 1990s is essential to understanding the normative and policy problems that the Commission was trying to resolve as well as the remaining contestation that surrounds coming to the rescue of civilians caught in the throes of war. This chapter provides a sense of the practical and political problems that animated the development of R2P along with the distance yet to be covered to make mass atrocities an unpleasant memory instead of an ugly and continuing current reality.

Keywords: responsibility to protect, post-Cold war, ICISS, United Nations, humanitarian intervention, mass atrocity

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