On 9 August 2010, at the request of the president of the General Assembly, UN member states participated in an informal interactive dialogue on the subject of early warning, assessment and the Responsibility to Protect. The dialogue was informed by a July 2010 Report of the Secretary-General on the same theme.
Interventions were delivered by 42 member states, two regional organizations, and two civil society representatives, as well as five panelists who included the Secretary-General's Special Advisers on the Prevention of Genocide and on the Responsibility to Protect. The discussion had a resoundingly positive tone, with virtually all of those that spoke stressing a need to prevent atrocities and agreeing that effective early warning is a necessary condition for effective prevention and early action. More than half the delegations welcomed the Secretary-General's report and endorsed ongoing changes to enhance the UN Secretariat's early warning capacity. A small number of member states expressed objections– namely, Nicaragua, Iran, Pakistan, Sudan and Venezuela. Even so, constructive interventions from some member states, who were previously skeptical about R2P – India, Cuba, and Egypt – suggested that consensus on R2P within the membership is deepening.
As with the 2009 debate on implementing R2P, the 2010 dialogue on early warning and assessment brought to light the burgeoning support among member states to prevent and halt mass atrocity crimes. The discussion of the challenges underlying early warning and assessment was a significant step toward making R2P a working reality.
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Iran, Islamic Republic of
Korea, Republic of
African Union (observer)
International Coalition for the Responsibility to Protect