Leading experts discussed the state of atrocity prevention as a growing field of peacebuilding theory and practice.

In 2017, a half-million Rohingya fled attacks on their homes in Burma. Eight million face starvation amid Yemen’s war. Atrocities against civilians continue in Syria, South Sudan and elsewhere. What lessons did we learn from the Holocaust – if any? And how can we strengthen norms and institutions to prevent future atrocities more effectively? On January 30, USIP hosted a discussion on the state of atrocity prevention with leading experts.

In recent decades we have seen new commitments to protect civilians from mass atrocities. Still, policymakers face obstacles. They may lack access to areas at risk, or leverage over possible perpetrators. So how can we translate political commitments into timely and effective practice? Is it possible to identify risk and prevent mass violence before it erupts? How can justice mechanisms help ensure accountability and prevent future mass violence?

The conversation continued online at #SwissIHRAseries.

Speakers

Ambassador Princeton Lyman, Welcome 
Senior Advisor to the President,  U.S. Institute of Peace

Ambassador Martin Dahinden, Opening Remarks
Ambassador of Switzerland to the United States of America

Jonas Claes, Moderator
Senior Program Officer, U.S. Institute of Peace

Mô Bleeker
Special Envoy for Dealing with the Past and the Prevention of Atrocities, Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs 

Lawrence Woocher 
Research Director, Simon-Skjodt Center for the Prevention of Genocide, U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum

Menachem Rosensaft
General Council, World Jewish Congress

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Instagram: @swissembassyusa
Twitter: @SwissEmbassyUSA

United States Institute of Peace
Instagram: @USIPeace
Twitter: @USIP 

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