International Relations

Regional Multilateralism: The Right to Protect, not the Responsibility to Protect, in Africa

Authors

Abstract

The African Union (AU) has rejected R2P and opposed the UN Security Council-authorized military action in Libya for human rights protection, claiming primacy in decision-making on peace and security interventions on the continent. Yet, existing studies have assumed that the right to protect, as the AU established in article 4(h) of the Constitutive Act, is compatible with R2P. Drawing on the concept of regional multilateralism, this article argues that the right to protect involves a unique African logic and ambition, albeit with an extraordinary significance for global security governance. Particularly, the right to protect is a robust, bold, stable, and uncontested international security regime, which favourable Permanent Five members of the Security Council can turn to when facing the twin problems of legitimacy and veto-induced paralysis. However, such P5 members must embrace the AU’s novel principle: continental sovereignty, which underlines the AU’s primacy claims in decision-making in peace and security.

Content

Thumbnail image of The Right to Protect- APSA Preprint.pdf

Comments

Log in or register with APSA to comment
Comments are not moderated before they are posted, but they can be removed by the site moderators if they are found to be in contravention of our Commenting Policy [opens in a new tab] – please read this policy before you post. Comments should be used for scholarly discussion of the content in question. You can find more information about how to use the commenting feature here [opens in a new tab] .