R2P selectively used for regime change: India

Citing the example of Libya and Syria, India expressed concern that the UN principle of "responsibility to protect" is being selectively used to promote national interests and bring about regime change in the conflict countries.

Last Updated: Feb 22, 2012, 16:09 PM IST

New York: Citing the example of Libya
and Syria, India has expressed concern that the UN principle
of "responsibility to protect" is being selectively used to
promote national interests and bring about regime change in
the conflict countries instead of saving civilians.

India`s Permanent Representative to the UN Hardeep Singh
Puri said that over the last year, responsibility to protect
or `R2P` has again been invoked selectively.

"If this does not change, I am afraid the noble idea of
R2P will come into disrepute. Indeed, the Libyan case has
already given R2P a bad name," he said at an informal meeting
here on Tuesday.

Puri said R2P should start with political engagement with
the parties concerned and only when an "honest and serious"
attempt at settlement fails should the international community
respond.

"And the response should again be calibrated and gradual,
rather than immediate recourse to armed intervention.
Selectivity must be avoided with respect to situations that
the international community chooses to respond to. The
principle must also be applied uniformly to all parties to a
conflict," he added.

When intervening in a country facing conflicts, the
international community must also be cautious and mindful of
the consequences of its actions, Puri said.

"We must not end with a situation where saving hundreds
causes killing of thousands. The UN must act impartially and
must not take sides," he said.

Puri said as developments in Libya and Syria have shown,
the principle of R2P is being used for regime change.

PTI