First Open Debate of the Security Council on the Protection of Civilians

Following the now-established practice of the Security Council, a semi-annual debate on the protection of civilians in armed conflict took place on Wednesday 28 June 2006. The purpose of these open-debates is to take stock of developments in the area of protection of civilians, particularly situation-specific information and assess progress in the implementation of commitments made in the three Security Council Resolutions on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict (1674 (2006), 1296 (2000), 1265 (1999)).

CS and others considered this open debate an opportunity to reflect on the eaffirmation of the provisions of the World Summit Outcome Document on the responsibility to protect populations from genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and ethnic cleansing.

Denmark, as president of the Security Council, circulated a discussion paper in advance of the debate and posed a series of questions to shape the debate. Read the discussion paper circulated by Denmark.

Governments were overwhelmingly positive in expressing their support for the Responsibility to Protect and urging the Security Council to consider ways to operationalize R2P, beginning with taking concrete steps to implement Security Council Resolution 1674 (2006).

For excerpted government statements referencing R2P at the open debate, click here.

Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Jan Egeland briefed the Securtiy Council on the situation of the protection of civilians around the world (including in Iraq, Sudan, Afghanistan, Somalia, the DRC, Uganda and Colombia). He used the framework of R2P to highlight the obligation of the Security Council to take predicatable action to protect civilians under threat and referred to the Security Council's reaffirmation of R2P in Res 1674. Read the statement by Under-Secretary-General Jan Egeland to the Security Council.

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