The responsibility to protect : success or failure of the principle? : an attempt to overcome its obstacles and analysis of its implementation in the Libyan crisis
Since its adoption in 2005, the principle of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) has had to face several obstacles and criticisms to its implementation. In this paper, I will analyse how to solve the problem of its non-binding nature, how to reform the UN system to implement it adequately and how to improve its single and most important element: the responsibility to prevent. Moreover, I will state how to create the political will to react to mass atrocities, how to overcome the obstacles of the selectivity and double standards in its implementation and how to make individual States, regional organisations and the United Nations accountable for the misuse of R2P, for the failure to prevent a crisis and for the omission to act in cases of commission of mass atrocity crimes. The tension between R2P and State’s sovereignty, along with the problems of any humanitarian intervention and of delivering R2P in Africa, as post-colonial countries criticise the principle for being a new form of Western colonialism, will also be studied. The overcoming of these obstacles will furthermore be analysed in light of the ongoing Libyan crisis, when the R2P theory has most recently been put into practice. Has R2P become a success, or a failure?