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Ethical Dilemmas Connected with the “Responsibility to Protect”

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Chapter Summary

R2P proposes a framework which partly breaks up the opposition between intervention and sovereignty and puts the two into a different perspective. After the Thirty Years War, the concepts of the modern state and of sovereignty were de-ethicized. This chapter sheds light on the ethical dilemmas and tensions connected with R2P. It is a contribution to the consciousness of the "dark" sides of R2P. The chapter outlines three central dilemmas. The first dilemma highlighted is connected with the expectations raised by R2P. The second dilemma is connected with the different ethical concepts involved in the R2P argument. The third dilemma is connected with the ambiguous role of the law in the field of grave human rights violations. Finally, it is logically inconsistent to treat current international law as a cause for R2P situations and, at same time, as the unquestionable premise of the realization of R2P.

Keywords: ethical dilemma; human rights violation; international intervention; international law; Responsibility to Protect (R2P); sovereignty; Thirty Years War



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