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The Responsibility to ProtectA Defense$
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Alex J. Bellamy

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198704119

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198704119.001.0001

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The Promise of R2P

The Promise of R2P

(p.57) 3 The Promise of R2P
The Responsibility to Protect

Alex J. Bellamy

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines what sort of a “thing” R2P is and what we can—and cannot—expect it to achieve. It starts by outlining the nature of international norms and showing how they influence behavior and their limits. It argues that norms are shared expectations about what constitutes appropriate behavior and that whilst, like laws, they can influence behavior, they cannot determine it. The chapter then applies this thinking to R2P, to give an understanding of how R2P might work in practice. It suggests that R2P can sometimes act as a weak “rallying call” propelling states to respond to genocide and mass atrocities but that it achieves its greatest effects when states internalize the goals of R2P and try to realize those goals as a matter of routine.

Keywords:   norms, action, interests, social context, securitization

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