Dissertations and Theses

Date of Award


Document Type



International Relations

First Advisor

Jean Krasno


International Affairs, Peace Building, Peace Keeping


This paper is an attempt to shed the light on the new emerging norm of the Responsibility to Protect, famously known as (R2P) and its use and abuse within international relations landscape. The norm meant to replace the widely argued and challenged principle of humanitarian intervention, and to put an end, once and for all, to the atrocities committed by sovereign states against their own people, providing protection to those civilians who get caught in armed conflicts, and held those responsible for such crimes accountable for it regardless of any impunity they might have. Despite it’s new emerging the norm have been agreed on anonymously by the United Nations member states on World Summit of
2005, and shortly after that it was put into use by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) in many occasions. The UNSC is responsible for maintaining international peace and security. This paper will look how properly R2P was used and abused by examining carefully its application on three international crises that I chose as study cases, and these are the crisis of Libya (2011), the crisis of Syria (2011), and the Iraq crisis of (2003).
The first tow crises were similar as they were civil uprising that was faced by government brutal crackdown on its citizens, but the two crises were different in how the regional and international community respond to it within R2P scope, and how national interest and other political elements affect this response. However, the third study cases looked at R2P application from different prospective, as the Iraq war of 2003 was an illegal interstate conflict that was justified later by reasons of liberty and humanity and yet these same justification were breached in the after math of the occupation of Iraq.



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