WHAT IS IT?
The Office of the Special Adviser for the United Nations has two Special Advisers appointed to the Prevention of Genocide. These two advisers are Adama Dieng of Senegal and Jennifer Welsh of Canada. While each Special Advisor has their own individual tasks, collectively Dieng and Welsh are responsible for “alerting relevant actors of risk of genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing, and crimes against humanity”. In addition to those responsibilities, Dieng and Welsh are in charge of improving the capabilities of the United Nations to prevent these crimes. Dieng was appointed to this position in July of 2012 and is responsible for all prevention issues that the UN handles for genocide. Welsh, working under the guidance of Dieng, is the Special Adviser of the Responsibility to Protect and was appointed in July of 2013.
WHAT DO THEY DO?
The Special Advisers are responsible for gathering information about areas where there may be a risk of genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing, and crimes against humanity. Since the information they are seeking is sensitive, the public does not see most of the work they complete until it is released in a pubic statement. Public statements are released by the Special Advisers in situations where violence will be reduced with public awareness.
Check out their outreach page to learn more about the public briefings they have held: http://www.un.org/en/preventgenocide/adviser/briefings.shtml
The Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide has several projects that they are working on. One project, called the “The Responsibility to Protect and Non-state armed groups”, began in 2011 with Dr. William Reno. This project is aimed at identifying, assessing, and responding to areas where non-state armed groups have control, which may put that state at risk of genocide. The purpose of this project is to create specific policy guidelines and operational methodologies for responding to areas where non-state armed groups have control.
To learn more about their projects, check out this link: http://www.un.org/en/preventgenocide/adviser/projects.shtml
PREVENTION OF GENOCIDE
On there website, there is a page called Preventing Genocide. This page has information about what genocide is and emphasizes the importance of understanding the root causes of genocide in order to prevent it. At the bottom of this page they posted a short 3-minute video of Dieng talking about the Rwanda genocide and how we need to learn from it to never let genocide happen again.
CHECK IT OUT!
The Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide has a great website with lots of information! To find out more about their key missions or to sign up for their mailing list, visit: http://www.un.org/en/preventgenocide/adviser/index.shtml
All information was received from: http://www.un.org/en/preventgenocide/adviser/index.shtml