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MRG Briefing - Genocide and Minorities - Preventing the Preventable - published April 2004

CRAG has great pleasure of introducing this advocacy briefing, Genocide and Minorities, Preventing the Preventable, by John Packer and Erik Friberg, that was launched by the UK-based Minority Rights Group International on 15 April 2004 at the United Nations Office, Palais des Nations, Geneva.

It is estimated that 70% of violent conflicts in the world are ethnic or religious conflicts. Research has linked the incidence of ethnic conflict to violations of minority rights. In this briefing, an assessment is made of the key issues around minorities, genocide and other forms of violent conflict, and the threats such conflicts pose to global peace and security. It makes a number of concrete recommendations to improve UN action to prevent violent conflict involving minorities, including genocide.

The briefing builds on some of the proposals made by other actors in the field, including the proposals made by the UN Secretary-General at the Stockholm conference, Preventing Genocide: Threats and Responsibilities, in January 2004.

Starting with the first holocaust of the 20th century, the Armenian Genocide, and continuing through the unspeakable horrors that range from the Jewish Holocaust till Rwanda ten years ago, the world today is also being challenged by the atrocities in the Darfur region of Sudan.

Never again is a mantra by the world community that has acquired a hollow ring to it. Many genocidal acts will have possibly been prevented if the world had acted with less cowardice or expediency during the unfurling of the Armenian Genocide.

It is hoped that this constructive MRG briefing will pave the way toward a more responsible approach to conflict-prevention - including genocide.


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