GCR2P Applauds US Government’s Leadership on Mass Atrocity Prevention

23 April 2012

The Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect welcomes President Obama’s announcement today of the official creation of the Atrocities Prevention Board (APB), which stems from the 2011 presidential study directive on mass atrocity prevention. This interagency board is a key step in strengthening the U.S. Government’s capacity to respond to genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and ethnic cleansing.

The creation of the APB is a positive and progressive affirmation of what it means for a state to uphold its Responsibility to Protect. In the wake of this announcement, the Global Centre calls upon all states to take similar steps toward preventing mass atrocity crimes including:

  1. The issuing of a high level statement indicating that mass atrocity prevention is a priority;
  2. The undertaking of a national review of existing capacities and gaps, and;
  3. The appointment of a senior government official as a Focal Point on the Responsibility to Protect. The Focal Points initiative was launched by the Global Centre in partnership with the governments of Denmark, Ghana, Costa Rica and Australia in an effort to institutionalize the Responsibility to Protect at the national level. Thirteen states have named Focal Points to date.

“With mass atrocity crimes occurring in Syria, Sudan, DR Congo and elsewhere, President Obama has displayed that the U.S. is prepared to be a global leader when it comes to upholding the Responsibility to Protect,” said Dr. Simon Adams, Executive Director. “The APB should be an institutional antidote to inaction and indifference in the face of conscience shocking crimes, wherever they may occur in the world. We believe that the APB, working with the international community, can save lives. This is a historic moment in the struggle against mass atrocity crimes.”

Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect


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Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect

Ralph Bunche Institute for International Studies
The Graduate Center, CUNY
365 Fifth Avenue, Suite 5203
New York, NY 10016-4309, USA

Phone: +1 212-817-1929 | info@globalr2p.org
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