International norm “responsibility to protect” in Eastern Africa
Responsibility to Protect seeks to bridge two ambivalent concepts of state sovereignty and adherence to human rights and morality in the sphere of international relations. This study examines the evolution of the principle to protect as an international norm by highlighting specific situations in Eastern Africa region. It evaluates prior UN and US humanitarian interventions in the Eastern African region in the early 1990s in a bid to illuminate the significant issues and experience that is of importance to the current intervention by international community intervention in Kenya. This is even more significant with the addition of freedom of expression as a key right under the R2P principle as it is consistent with the moral, legal, and consequentialist arguments in favor of the international norm of right to protect. The study established the existence of the responsibility to protect within East Africa Community. The study examined four intervention cases and found that states‟ responses to humanitarian crises have not dramatically changed before and after R2P was adopted; of particular concern were: the Kenyan post-election violence of 2007/2008 which has mostly been characterized by violence at various stages from pre-election, during elections and post-election; the civil war in the South Sudan region of Sudan which has been raging since 2003; the 1994 genocide in Rwanda as well as the anarchy and dysfunction state of Somalia lacking functional state institutions that can maintain the peace and rule of law, has been neglected by the international community and continues to titter on the brink of genocide and . In conclusion, the study addressed the moral justification of the use of hard power as well as challenges facing responsibility to protect using the intervention of South Sudan, Somalia, Rwanda and Kenya case studies. Even though there are reservations for such armed intervention, it is worth noting that the decision to intervene was undertaken strategically. As far as right to protect is concern, the study has clearly highlighted the morals issues of responsibility to protect.