Publisher: University of Calabar

Doctrine of State Sovereignty and United Nations’ Veto Power As Mitigating Factors In The Prevention of Genocide.Case Study of The Genocides In Bosnia and Rwanda

Godwin E. Essoh (ph.d), Ali S. Yusufu Bagaji (ph.d)
KEYWORDS: Genocide, UNAMIR, Bosnia, Rwanda, Sovereignty, Veto Power


There is a tendency by the international community to show indignation and revulsion when genocide is committed, followed by calls for sanctions against the perpetrators. In the last two decades, genocide was committed in Rwanda and Bosnia while the world looked on and not intervened out of respect for sovereignty. This article argues that the doctrine of state sovereignty has been stretched to a ridiculous level insofar as the crime of genocide is concerned. Moreover, the ability of the international community to prevent genocides is hampered by the power of veto of the permanent members of the United Nations
Security Council. The article proposes that the international community should take seriously the need for humanitarian military intervention in situations of gross human rights violations that puts the lives of innocent citizens at stake. In addition, there should be a resolve to reform the veto power in the UN Security Council so that it is not exercised in the cases of genocide and other crimes against civilian populations

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