Academics & Faculty

Burkle Center annual conference looks at intervention in humanitarian crises

Event highlights challenges facing U.S., international community

What responsibility does a nation have to protect its people from genocide, war and crimes against humanity? At what point should the international community intervene, even militarily, when a nation neglects its duty? Will the Obama administration expend military resources to right wrongs abroad, especially given deep skepticism over U.S. involvement in Iraq?

"The Future of the Responsibility to Protect," a one-day conference sponsored by UCLA's Burkle Center for International Relations, will address these questions of humanitarian intervention and assess the prospects and pitfalls of the landmark 2001 report "The Responsibility to Protect" (R2P), published by the independent International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty (ICISS).
The conference will take place Tuesday, April 14, from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., in the Grand Horizon Room at Covel Commons on the UCLA campus.
The lunch keynote address will be delivered by Gareth Evans, who authored the report when he was co-chair of the ICISS. Evans is currently the president and CEO of the International Crisis Group and was formerly the foreign minister of Australia. The title of his address, and of his most recent book, is "The Responsibility to Protect: Ending Mass Atrocity Crimes Once and for All."
Evans will be introduced by Gen. Wesley Clark (Ret.), a senior fellow at the Burkle Center. After a short address, Evans will be interviewed on stage by Los Angeles Times columnist and former Washington bureau chief Doyle McManus, who will then moderate questions from the audience.
McManus will also moderate the fourth panel of the day, "Prescriptions for the Obama Administration," which will include presentations by Gen. Clark, Steven Groves of the Heritage Foundation, Amy Zegart of the UCLA School of Public Affairs, Michael Byers of the University of British Columbia and Nina Hachigian of the Center for American Progress.
Additional conference panels will explain the doctrine, origins and limits of the R2P report; address lessons learned from crises in Kosovo, Rwanda and Bosnia; and offer recommendations for current challenges in Darfur, Myanmar and Zimbabwe. 
Other panelists and moderators from UCLA include Burkle Center director and law professor Kal Raustiala, former foreign minister of Thailand and Burkle Center senior fellow Kantathi Suphamongkhon, director of the International Human Rights Law Program and law professor David Kaye, and political science professor Daniel Posner.
Other participants of note include Columbia University professor and UN special adviser for R2P Edward Luck, Nicole Willette of the U.S. State Department, Georgette Gagnon of Human Rights Watch and other scholars from universities and think tanks across the nation.

While all panels are free and open to the public, online registration is required. Registration for the lunch keynote address is $20 for non-students and $8 for students. Please register for the lunch by noon on April 8.
To register and to view a full conference schedule and list of panelists, including biographies, visit:

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