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July 18, 2004

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Darfur and Genocide: Mechanisms for Rapid Response

Dr Greg Austin and Ben Koppelman

The unfolding of the Darfur crisis since January 2003 shows that the United Nations, the USA, the UK and the EU have not lived up to their promises for more effective conflict prevention or their obligations to monitor, prevent and punish the crime of genocide. The lessons of failure to prevent the Rwanda genocide have not been fully institutionalised. This paper lays out the sort of measures that need to be taken in such cases and that could have been taken much earlier in the Darfur case. Policy must focus on the perpetrators. The start point has to be measures personally targeted against them. Early measures for preventing imminent genocide must also include contingency planning for multinational military intervention as a means of bolstering diplomatic pressure.

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