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Humanitarian Intervention and the Right to Protect - Essay Example

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Humanitarian Intervention and the Right to Protect

The inviolability of the principle of sovereignty stood as a formidable obstacle to the entrance of other nations into sovereign territories for the purposes of humanitarian intervention.
Even though sovereignty was an obstacle to humanitarian intervention, world leaders began to argue that intervention was a moral duty and responsibility. For the purposes of enforcing a right to intervention for humanitarian purposes, Canada founded the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty. In 2001, the Commission published a report which openly supported, not just the right of the international community to intervene in instance of humanitarian crisis but which explicitly stated that the international community had a responsibility to protect population from the consequences of such crisis. In the 2005 World Summit in New York, the responsibility to protect was put to the vote and 192 UN member states voted in its favour. The responsibility to protect, also known as R2P, passed into international law.
The responsibility to protect is, ostensibly, limited in scope to humanitarian intervention. Within the context of the stated, nations, under the UN umbrella, have the right to enter into a sovereign territory for the purposes of saving lives. ...
Objections
China, as have several other non-Western nations including Russia, has objected to R2P. China's objection, similar to that of other nations, is partially predicated on the assumption that the R2P doctrine is a strategy for the advancement of the West's politico-cultural and economic agenda upon non-Western nations. This means that R2P is interpreted as an excuse for the intervention in the affairs of sovereign nations. The very notion of humanitarian causes and intervention on the basis of humanitarian principles leaves the door wide upon to foreign intervention in any number of situations, according to China's argument and, ultimately, will constrain the powers of sovereign states. Another of China's arguments against R2P is that it is directly at odds with the doctrine of sovereignty and, indeed, legitimizes the violation of state sovereignty. Within the context of the stated causes, China has expressed fundamental and unwavering objection to R2P.
Burma
Burma suffered a cyclone of massive proportions which left tens of thousands dead and entire parts of the country devastated. While the death tool has been estimated at over 80,000, fears have been expressed that it is much greater than that. Furthermore, the country's military junta, which has displayed a completed incapability of dealing with the problem and, indeed, does not have the resources to, has been actively rejecting foreign help and aid. As long as it maintains its stance on the disallowance of foreign humanitarian workers into the country, the death tool will continue to rise.
France has recently proposed entrance into Burma under R2P. The doctrine maintains that nations have the responsibility to protect populations in instances of humanitarian crisis, ...Show more

Summary

The decades have witnessed a series of natural and man-made disasters which emphasized the imperatives of humanitarian intervention. Whether the Rwandan crisis or the Srebrenica, Bosnia and Kosovo ones, the world watch as hundreds of thousands needlessly lost their lives in deliberate and senseless acts of slaughter…
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Humanitarian Intervention and the Right to Protect essay example
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