The African Union's Emerging Peace and Security Regime Opportunities and Challenges for Delivering on the Responsibility to Protect

"This monograph offers a timely exploration of the capacity of the AU, other African regional organisations, and members of the international community to deliver on their responsibility to protect. It draws on case studies of the AU and other international engagements in Burundi and Darfur, Sudan, to explore the opportunities and challenges for operationalising the responsibility to protect in Africa. This monograph uses the central principles of The Responsibility to Protect as its guiding conceptual framework and links these principles to the AU’s stated commitments to intervene for human protection purposes. It focuses on issues surrounding the physical protection of civilians in armed conflict with limited reference to legal mechanisms for protection. It is important to note that the AU’s involvement in Burundi and Darfur does not represent the “last resort” type interventions that are envisioned in The Responsibility to Protect and the AU’s Constitutive Act. In both cases, the AU’s involvement was conditional upon receiving consent from the host authorities/ governments.The monograph concludes that while the AU appears to possess the political will to deliver on its reinvigorated peace and security agenda – at least in Burundi and Darfur – it continues to face enormous constraints."