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International Responses to Mass Atrocities in Africa

Responsibility to Protect, Prosecute, and Palliate

Since the end of World War II and the founding of the United Nations, genocide, crimes against humanity, and other mass atrocities have been explicitly illegal. When such crimes are committed, the international community has an obligation to respond, which has come to be known as “the responsibility to protect.”

Parallel to this responsibility, two related responsibilities have developed: to prosecute those responsible for the crimes, and to provide humanitarian relief to the victims—what Kurt Mills in this book calls the “responsibility to palliate.” While this rhetoric of protection is well used by the international community, its application in practice has been erratic at best. In International Responses to Mass Atrocities in Africa, Mills develops a typology of responses to mass atrocities, considering four cases in Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Uganda, and Darfur. Putting the cases into historical context and analyzing them according to this typology, Mills investigates the limitations of these responses and calls for such responses to be implemented in a more timely and thoughtful manner. Mills provides critical analysis of the possibilities for the international community to respond to humanitarian crises in the future.

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Table of Contents

Foreword to the Paperback Edition  Introduction  1. Interrogating International Responsibilities  2. Rwanda: The Failure of “Never Again”  3. Demo­cratic Republic of the Congo: Protecting Civilians?  4. Uganda (and Beyond): Testing the International Criminal Court  5. Darfur: The Post-­World Summit Test  6. Realizing R2P3: Labeling, Institutions, and Authority  Notes  Bibliography 

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