Implementing the Responsibility to Protect in the Asia Pacific: An Assessment of Progress and Challenges

20 December 2018
The Asia Pacific Centre for the Responsibility to Protect has released a new study evaluating the efforts of the 20 states within the Asia Pacific region to implement the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) nationally and regionally.

R2P is an international principle that holds that every state has the responsibility to protect its population from atrocities (genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing). The assessment of the region’s performance is based on 36 indicators across six distinct but overlapping areas.

The study found that the region as a whole is doing well in the following areas:

  • Protecting populations from atrocities and addressing underlying risk factors
  • Engaging with UN human rights mechanisms and enacting national legislation to combat discrimination
  • Supporting UN Security Council prevention and protection activities

The study’s authors also found that the region needs to improve in these areas:

  • Developing regional capacities for atrocity prevention
  • Protecting populations from atrocities
  • Dealing with past atrocities

The states that have done the most to implement R2P in the region are South Korea, New Zealand, Australia, Japan, Fiji and East Timor. On the other hand, North Korea, Myanmar, Laos, Brunei, China and Vietnam have done little to implement R2P.

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