International Conference on Prevention of Genocides

31 MARCH - 01 APRIL 2014




Egmont Institute 

FPS Foreign Affairs

Literaly Event: Rwanda, 20 years after


1948: Adoption of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (Raphaël Lemkin)

Art. 2  genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such :    

  • Killing members of the group ;
  • Causing serious bodily or mental  harm to members of the group;
  • Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
  • Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;
  • Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group


Selected UN Documents

UN Entities

Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide:

UN Treaties

Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide:

Convention on the Non-Applicability of Statutory Limitations to War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity:

Principles of international co-operation in the detection, arrest, extradition and punishment of persons guilty of war crimes and crimes against humanity:

Statute of the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia:

Statute of the International Tribunal for Rwanda:

Rome Statue of the International Criminal Court:


Responsibility to protect
(“RtoP” or “R2P”)

Describes an evolving concept about the duties of governments to prevent and end unconscionable acts of violence against the people of the world. Aims to provide a legal and ethical basis for humanitarian intervention. Responsibility to protect populations from genocide, ethnic cleansing, war crimes and crimes against humanity is an international commitment by governments to prevent and react to grave crises. The idea is that if a particular State were unwilling or unable to carry out its responsibility to prevent abuses, the responsibility would have to be transferred to the international community, which would then solve problems primarily via peaceful means (such as diplomatic pressure, dialogue, sanctions) or, as a last resort, through the use of military force.


Selected UN Documents

S/RES/1674 (adopted 28 April 2006): Security Council resolution 1674 (2006) [on protection
of civilians in armed conflict]

In paragraph 4 of this resolution, the Security Council reaffirmed the provisions of paragraphs 138 and
139 of the 2005 World Summit Outcome regarding the responsibility to protect populations from
genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity.
A/RES/60/1 (adopted 16 September 2005): 2005 World Summit Outcome : resolution

Paragraphs 138 and 139 of this document: “Responsibility to protect populations from
genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity”
A/59/2005 (21 March 205): In larger freedom: towards development, security and human
rights for all; Report of the Secretary-General

A/59/565 (2 December 2004): Note [transmitting report of the High-level Panel on Threats,
Challenges and Change, entitled "A more secure world: our shared responsibility"]

A/57/303 (14 Aug. 2002): Letter dated 2002/07/26 from the Permanent Representative of
Canada to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General


Further Information

UNRIC Library Backgrounder on Genocide:

Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) - Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict:

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs – Thematic Areas: Protection:

Women and Peace and Security (WomenWatch):


Non-UN Sources

International Criminal Court (ICC):

International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty (ICISS):

International Coalition for the Responsibility to Protect (ICRtoP):

September 2013 not an official document – for information only




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