How can a 'Responsible' European Union Contribute to the Implementation of the Responsibility to Protect?

Ercan P. G., Gunay D.

EUROPEAN REVIEW, vol.27, no.4, pp.490-505, 2019 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 27 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Doi Number: 10.1017/s1062798719000115
  • Journal Name: EUROPEAN REVIEW
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.490-505
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


In 2013, in light of the mass atrocity cases in Libya and Syria, the Foreign Affairs Committee of the European Parliament recommended 'to reconfirm the EU's commitment to R2P [Responsibility to Protect] by adopting an interinstitutional "Consensus on R2P"'. Despite such reaffirmation, the Union's role in implementing R2P remains an open-ended question. To date, the EU's contribution to R2P has rarely been studied. In our attempt to contribute to the literature, approaching the issue from an ethical perspective, we aim to answer the following questions: what are the existing capacities of the EU in contributing to R2P; and what can the EU do to be a more responsible actor in the future? After identifying the existing capacities of the Union, we analyse what the EU can do to make the international community more responsible in the future given that we have already left behind the first decade of the norm, which was characterized by inconsistent implementation. Finally, we conclude that the Union holds a genuine potential for further development and a consistent implementation of the norm mainly by utilizing its non-military tools.