IAGS2017 Session 4

Day 2, 11 July 0900-1030 Session 4

Genocide Prevention IV

Location W332, Level 3, Forgan Smith
Chair Stephen McLoughlin; Liverpool Hope University
How to Implement Responsibility to Protect in Practice – an Assessment of the Global R2P Focal Point Initiative
Authors Martin Mennecke, University of Southern Denmark
Abstract More than a decade after governments agreed at the United Nations on their responsibility to protect there is widespread agreement that future efforts need to focus on implementation. This is what the UN Secretary General states in his annual R2P reports; this is what governments regularly emphasize in their remarks at the annual R2P dialogue in the UN General Assembly; this is what civil society is calling for. One frequently mentioned vehicle for the operationalization of R2P is the appointment of a national R2P focal point. By now more than 50 countries have named a senior government official their focal point to advance R2P at the national level. This paper will examine the institution ‘national R2P focal point’ and analyse what role a focal point can play in the implementation of R2P. The theory of appointing an R2P Focal Point will be juxtaposed with the practical experience of actual R2P Focal Points. The latter section will be based on interviews with acting and former focal points. The paper will also look at the role of the Global Network of R2P Focal Points and its role in implementing R2P and draw on research to be conducted at the next global network meeting in May 2017 in Qatar. The paper will make an important contribution to the academic analysis of R2P in practice, as the focal point initiative has not yet been sufficiently examined.
Biography Martin Mennecke is Associate Professor of International Law at the University of Southern Denmark. In addition to his academic work, he has for the past ten years regularly participated as adviser to the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs in meetings at the European Union, the United Nations, the International Whaling Commission and the International Criminal Court. For the past six years, Martin Mennecke has been adviser to the Danish Focal Point for R2P at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He was closely involved in drafting the Focal Point concept in 2011 and has since helped to facilitate the implementation of R2P across the Danish government. He has worked with the Ministry’s Human Rights Department, the development cooperation team (DANIDA), relevant Embassies and the Ministry of Defence. He also assists with Danish R2P efforts within the European Union and R2P collaboration with other international partners.
Genocide as Securitization: Constructing Threat and Identity in the Holocaust
Authors Camilo Torres, University of Calgary
Abstract Genocide has remained a distinct problem throughout the twenty-first century, despite numerous international commitments to prevent this “crime of crimes” from occurring again. In genocide, the collective identity of the victim group is reinterpreted such that their continued physical existence is perceived as a threat to the rest of society. Elite-level perpetrators often claim they are securing the social identity of the nation’s only “legitimate” inhabitants, and that in order to obtain any meaningful security for future generations, the total destruction of the “other” is necessary. Securitization theory is a framework that expands the scope of security studies towards any issue that can be successfully communicated and interpreted as a security threat. The literature points to the threat argument as the key moment that both identifies the unique and existential nature of the security problem, and advocates for the use of extraordinary measures as a solution. The Holocaust will serve as a historical case study to examine genocide as a radicalized type of securitization process. I argue that the way in which the collective identity of European Jews was reconstructed by the Nazi regime, mirrors the speech acts present in a successful threat argument. This type of securitization process establishes genocide as the emergency measures necessary to secure the identity and future of “legitimate” society. Applying the proposed theoretical framework can provide an improvement on our understanding of how perpetrators come to perceive genocidal policy as a means of obtaining security, and how this is then communicated outward.
Biography I am a second-year M.A. student in the Department of Political Science, University of Calgary, un-der the supervision of Dr. M. Hiebert, Associate Professor and Senior Research Fellow at the Cen-tre for Military, Security, and Strategic Studies, who has expressed her support for this submis-sion. My thesis project focuses on forms of political communication and the construction of identi-ty among victims, perpetrators, and bystanders in instances of genocide, in an effort to elaborate on existing theories about genocidal policies and decision-making. Additionally, I am interested in how regimes construct their visions of an idealized, post-atrocity society and how this affects pat-terns of communication and development before the radicalization of the genocidal state.
‘Cyber-Intervention’ as a Means for the Prevention and Mitigation of Genocide in the 21st Century?
Authors Rhiannon Neilsen, University of New South Wales
Abstract ‘Cyber-warfare’ is a term that has been used liberally – and ambiguously – by theorists and practitioners in recent years. Crucially, the cyber-realm is widely regarded as the fifth domain of war – the modern battlefield of zeros and ones. This conceptual opacity has prompted recent literature regarding the ontology and ethics of cyber-war. Yet, despite these preliminary investigations, there is little research on the possible uses of cyber for preventing mass atrocities in the 21st century. Given the topical nature of the cyber-realm in 2016, and the on-going tumultuous events in places like Syria, this focus is timely but largely neglected. To fill this gap, this paper asks whether and how cyber-means can be used as a legitimate form of humanitarian intervention in instances of genocide. Specifically: can ‘cyber-intervention’ – such as communication disruption and the interruption of electronic weapons transactions – assist in the prevention or mitigation of mass atrocities? The paper also considers what ethical principles should guide cyber-interventions as a possible complementary form of humanitarian intervention. Traditional humanitarian intervention relies on military force, such as airstrikes and troops on the ground. It is arduous to implement, expensive, and – ultimately – unpopular due to the risk it poses to civilians and military personnel. Given cyber’s apparent ‘non-kinetic’ nature, the United Nations and its constituents may be more inclined to sanction the use of cyber-interventions, especially as a first-response measure. Using cyber-means could be a more efficient, less costly (in terms of money and life), reversible, and timelier means to prevent or mitigate atrocities.
Biography Rhiannon Neilsen is an early career researcher at UNSW Canberra. A graduate of the University of Queensland, she was awarded the Dean’s Commendation for Academic Excellence (2011-2014) and was awarded ‘Top 50 Future Leaders’ for her graduating class. She has conducted research at the Asia-Pacific Centre for the Responsibility to Protect and the United Nations Association of Australia. In 2015, she completed a Master of Philosophy (Research) at UNSW Canberra with unconditional approvals from both external examiners, and a high distinction average for the coursework component. While completing her masters, she was a research assistant and academic tutor for undergraduate courses. In 2016, she was a researcher for the Australian Centre for the Study of Armed Conflict and Society (ACSACS). Rhiannon has published work on genocide prevention, perpetrator motivation, military ethics, and moral injury. She is currently applying for PhD positions in Politics.

Mass Atrocities in Burma/Myanmar

Location W349, Level 3, Forgan Smith
Chair Sarah Teitt; University of Queensland
“There we are nothing, here we are nothing!” – The Enduring Effects of Rohingya Persecution in Burma on Their Lives in the Diaspora
Authors Melanie O'Brien, University of Queensland
Gerhard Hoffstaedter, University of Queensland
Abstract Rohingya refugees from Burma have been fleeing to Malaysia for decades. There, they believe they will find co-religionists, fellow Muslims, to provide protection and support. However, the lived reality in Malaysia carries forth decades of ethnic marginalisation, persecution and discrimination in Burma. Malaysia is not a party to the Refugee Convention, leaving Rohingya without any legal or political status in Malaysia. The culture, language and identity of being Rohingya many have lost decades ago are subsumed by the need to learn the Malay language, take up Malay customs and prioritise daily survival. Thus regaining lost cultural and linguistic identity is not a priority, and much of it is lost along the arduous journey to Malaysia or in the phase of assimilation. Even their shared Sunni Muslim religion becomes inflected by Malay customs as Rohingya are subject to Malaysian religious policing. Researchers and NGOs have determined that treatment of Rohingya within Burma amounts to genocide, through physical and psychological destruction of an ethnic group. This paper examines how that genocide process continues through the experience of Rohingya refugees in Malaysia. Drawing on genocide theories such as Feierstein’s genocide as social process, it demonstrates how Rohingya loss of identity, culture and language is part of the overall genocide process being conducted by the Burma government. The paper will demonstrate how genocide goes beyond physical destruction and how a broader approach can and should be taken when interpreting the legal definition of genocide as found in the Genocide Convention and the Rome Statute.
Biography Dr Melanie O’Brien is a Research Fellow at the TC Beirne Law School, and Researcher in the Asia Pacific Centre for Responsibility to Protect, University of Queensland (UQ), Australia. Her research examines the connection between human rights violations and the genocide process. Melanie sits on the IAGS Advisory Board and is co-convenor of the 2017 IAGS Conference at UQ. She is an Australian Red Cross QLD International Humanitarian Law Committee member, and is on the Editorial Boards of Human Rights Review and IAGS journal Genocide Studies and Prevention. She is the author of Criminalising Peacekeepers: Modernising National Approaches to Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (2017, Palgrave). Melanie’s previous work includes Anti-Slavery Australia (UTS); the ARC Centre of Excellence in Policing and Security (Griffith University); the National Human Rights Institution of Samoa; and the Legal Advisory Section of the Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court. She is an admitted legal practitioner.

Dr Gerhard Hoffstaedter is a senior research fellow (DECRA) in anthropology at the University of Queensland. He conducts research with refugees in Southeast Asia, on refugee and immigration policy and on religion and the state. He is a regular commentator in newspapers, radio and online media on topics of his research. His first book entitled Modern Muslim Identities: Negotiating Religion and Ethnicity in Malaysia is published by NIAS Press. A co-edited volume Urban Refugees: Challenges in Protection, Services and Policy was published with Routledge in 2015.
ASEAN, Myanmar, and the Crisis in Rakhine: From Non-Interference to Non-Indifference?
Authors Noel Morada, University of Queensland
Abstract The attacks by militants against border police guards in Rakhine state in October 2016 has once again highlighted the continuing humanitarian crisis in Myanmar’s northwest region and the unresolved communal conflict between Arakanese Buddhists and Muslim Rohingyas in the area. The NLD government of Aung San Suu Kyi has been under pressure from the international community, including ASEAN, to respond more effectively to the situation in Rakhine and to stop the atrocities being committed against the Rohingyas by the military. Malaysia and Indonesia are the leading ASEAN members that have been pushing for a regional response to the crisis in Rakhine. While both states have been strong advocates of the non-interference principle in ASEAN, they have also pushed for a relaxation of this principle with regard to ASEAN’s collective response to the Rohingya problem in Myanmar. What then are the implications of the crisis in Rakhine for ASEAN’s strategy in dealing with human protection issues in the region, specifically in preventing and responding to atrocity crimes?
Biography Noel Morada, Director (Regional), Asia Pacific Centre for R2P, University of Queensland. He is former Professor of Political Science at the University of the Philippines Diliman and was a Distinguished Visiting Professor at the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at the Johns Hopkins University in Washington DC. Apart from his research and advocacy on R2P, he is also involved in regional security research and dialogue specifically dealing with terrorism, maritime security, and non-traditional security issues in Southeast Asia. He has also done research and publication on ASEAN external relations, the ASEAN Regional Forum and cooperative security in the Asia Pacific, as well as human security and human development in the region.

Definitions of Genocide II

Location W431, Level 4, Forgan Smith
Chair Peg LeVine; Monash University
The Contours of Justice: Guatemala and Genocide
Authors Regina Paulose, Independent researcher
Abstract The presenter will present a paper on the contours of justice after the events of the civil war and Mayan genocide in Guatemala in the 1970s up to the 1990’s. The presenter will discuss three lenses that have been presented to the international community regarding the events. Those lenses are the Recovery of Historical Memory Projects, the UN sponsored Commission for Historical Clarification, and the trial of Rios Montt. Looking at each particular situation, the presenter will discuss the implications of all three lenses of justice specifically 1) what were the basis for having that particular method used 2) whether that particular method was effective and 3) what impact the particular method had on people seeking justice for genocide. The presenter will conclude with some thoughts on whether there were alternative avenues and if any of these methods or all of them collectively were effective in creating a dialogue of justice after the genocide.
Biography Regina Paulose, Attorney, USA, LLM International Criminal Justice, obtained her J.D. from Seattle University School of Law and her LLM in International Crime and Justice from the University of Torino/UNICRI. She is a former prosecuting attorney in the USA. She has presented at international conferences and has published law review articles concerning the Rome Statute, Genocide, and Transnational Organized Crime. She has been a practicing attorney since 2004. She was the 2014-2016 Chair of the Steering Committee for the United Kingdom Child Sex Abuse People’s Tribunal.
Discourses of De-Civilizing and De-Humanizing: The Case of Post-2011 Revolution Egypt
Authors Liina Mustonen, European University Institute
Abstract The Egyptian revolution of 2011 was followed with political changes that did not please the entire society. The election of the Muslim Brotherhood to the country’s parliament and later the inauguration of the Muslim Brotherhood affiliated president, Mohammed Morsi, constituted a threat to what was considered as ‘the Egyptian identity’ and eventually the lifestyle of the country’s there-to-fore dominant forces. These political changes intensified the discourses that demonized and de-civilized the new rulers, that is, the Muslim Brotherhood ‘the Ikhwan’. What followed was a military coup d’etat that overthrew Egypt’s first democratically elected president Mohammed Morsi, and mass scale human rights violations on the streets of Cairo (most notably the Rabaa al-Adawiya massacre and the el-Nahda massacre). Instead of going to the details of these two cases or other events that preceded and followed these massacres (organizations such as the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights, Wiki Tharwa and the HRW provide a good source of information on these events), this research paper examines the ‘othering processes’ that constructed the ‘de-civilized’ other – ‘the ikhwan’, that was then later (and continues to be) de-humanized in the prison cells and on the streets of Cairo. I engage with theories of social distinction and based on those theories I illustrate how certain societal privileges were preserved by constructing others’ lives as not livable and their deaths as non-deaths. (Butler 2004).
Biography Liina Mustonen is a PhD candidate at the European University Institute working on social inequality and processes of othering in the Middle Eastern context with a focus on Egypt. Her research combines anthropological and sociological approaches. She conducted her ethnographic fieldwork in Egypt between the revolution in 2011 and the military coup d’etat in 2013. Her other current research focuses include gender-related topics such as instrumentalization of gender. She has a master degrees from the university of Helsinki and the University of Geneva.
ISIS and the Interaction between the Destruction of Cultural Property and Genocide
Authors Jadranka Petrovic, Monash University
Abstract ISIS’ continuous, specific and systematic targeting of non-Islamic cultural property in areas it controls demonstrates that ISIS is a terrorist organisation/self-proclaimed state with a carefully considered ideology of cultural and religious purity. The destruction of ancient cities of Palmyra, Hatra, Nineveh, Nimrud and Khorsabad are among the recent examples of what has been described as a ‘tactic of war’ and ISIS’ attempt to subjugate and eradicate the ‘other’, annihilate the past and control the future – ‘a genocidal assault on the core of a civilization’. These and similar attacks on cultural property highlight the question of whether the current interpretation of the crime of genocide adequately protects the preservation of a group. Although it has been recognised that the destruction of cultural property may be seen as proof of genocidal intent to physically destroy a group, the destruction of cultural property itself cannot constitute genocide. Under the current reading of the legal definition of the crime of genocide, only physical, biological destruction of a group can amount to this crime. Yet a group cannot function properly without its culture. Without its culture, a group becomes ‘disillusioned’ and only biologically vegetates. The contemporary method of warfare that involves deliberate and systematic targeting of group’s culture needs to be recognized and the definition of genocide needs to be read more expansively so that it encompasses not only biological but also cultural destruction of a group.
Biography Dr Jadranka Petrovic (LLB, PgradCertInt’lL, PgradDiplInt’lL, LLM, SJD (Melb), GCAP (Monash)) teaches and researches in various areas of International Law at Monash University. She is the author of The Old Bridge of Mostar and Increasing Respect for Cultural Property in Armed Conflict (Brill, Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, 2013). Her other recent publications include edited collection on accountability for violations of international humanitarian law, and book chapters, journal articles and conference papers on such varied topics as R2P, head of state immunity, use of cultural property for military purposes, statehood and self-determination, international trade in arms and a range of other international trade law topics. She serves on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Philosophy of International Law and acts as a reviewer for a number of other scholarly journals.

Victims and the ECCC

Location W426, Level 4, Forgan Smith
Chair William Smith; Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia
Justice as Prevention? Minorities and the Dynamics of Identity Politics at the Khmer Rouge Trials
Authors Christoph Sperfeldt, Australian National University
Abstract It is often claimed that justice processes in the aftermath of mass atrocities are a key to preventing the recurrence of violence. However, raising the transformative and preventative potential of formal justice is easier appealed to than done. This paper examines the role of minority victims in a genocide trial, using a case study of ethnic Vietnamese survivors who joined as civil parties before the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC). Building upon field research conducted between 2008 and 2015, the paper highlights the challenges that arise in the process of including minority narratives within the context of a mass atrocity trial. The account of these civil parties’ participation sheds light on the longstanding social dynamics of inclusion and exclusion affecting this minority group. In the present case, many ethnic Vietnamese civil parties have sought access to, or recognition of, Cambodian nationality, through a request for collective reparations under the Court’s Internal Rules. Following their persecution and forced deportation to Vietnam during the Khmer Rouge regime and their subsequent return to Cambodia, the authorities have regarded these long-term residents as ‘immigrants’ – in fact, these survivors are at risk of statelessness and live at the margins of society. While formal justice discourses and norms can be used to contest collective identities and mount calls for change, this paper also shows that such strategies alone may not adequately challenge the root causes of marginalisation or transform deeply entrenched social realities.
Biography Christoph Sperfeldt is a Ph.D. scholar at the School of Regulation and Global Governance (RegNet), Australian National University. He has also been Deputy Director at the Asian International Justice Initiative, a joint program of the East-West Center and the WSD Handa Center for Human Rights and International Justice, Stanford University, where he has supported human rights and rule of law capacity-building efforts in Southeast Asia. Prior to this, Christoph was Senior Advisor with the Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) in Cambodia. In this capacity, he worked from 2007 to 2010 as an Advisor to the Cambodian Human Rights Action Committee and from 2010 to 2011, as Advisor to the Victims Support Section of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia.
Past Present, Present Passed: Justice and Time Beyond the Khmer Rouge Regime
Authors Caroline Bennett, Victoria University of Wellington
Abstract The Khmer Rouge tribunal focuses on a punitive and retributive system of justice, one based in an international framework, where individuals must be held responsible for the terrible crimes of the Khmer Rouge and where justice is served through imprisonment and the finding of guilt. But for many Khmer people in Cambodia, these courts hold little relevance and make no impact on their everyday lives, where local forms of dealing with that period of history take dominance. Based on anthropological fieldwork in Cambodia, this paper will explore how informants in rural Cambodia draw on Buddhist frames of reference to understand and narrate the regime, and by doing so are creating their own understandings and lived experiences of that period of historical violence. It will discuss how people narrate the period within Buddhist temporality, one that situates times of chaos and stability as part of dukkha – the eternal suffering of life, and explore how through the resilience of Buddhism and its ritual resilience – the maintenance of forms of ritual (even if imaginative) during the regime - people make links between the period before the Khmer Rouge and after it, and thus are able to narrate the chaos and destruction as an aspect of Khmer Buddhist cosmology, that enables recovery in everyday life beyond the courts, and a form of cosmological justice beyond the legal system.
Biography Caroline Bennett is a lecturer in cultural anthropology at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. Her research addresses issues of conflict, violence and collective memory, with specific attention to mass graves, mass death, genocide, and the politics of death and the dead, interrogating the efficacy of geopolitical interventions and universalist assumptions related to trauma, healing, justice, and wider human rights discourses on conflict and disaster.
NGOs as Transitional Justice Actors: Qualitative Insights into the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia’s Victim Participation Scheme
Authors James Nakis, La Trobe University
Abstract Expansive participatory rights to victims granted by international criminal tribunals have activated local non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to play a greater role in servicing victims’ access to trial proceedings. A particular illustration of NGO contribution is their practical assistance in the implementation of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia’s (ECCC) victim participation scheme. The purpose of this paper is to examine the influence of NGOs in achieving transitional justice objectives, using Cambodian NGOs and their involvement with the ECCC, as a contextual basis. The paper describes research conducted in Cambodia in 2013, including semi-structured interviews with stakeholders involved in the provision of victim assistance to the Court: NGO staff, ECCC personnel, and legal representatives. Based on an analysis of interview responses, I propose that local NGOs can be instrumental not only in assisting victims directly participating in trial proceedings, but also in developing non-judicial projects that respond to victims’ needs and expectations. To achieve these victim-oriented initiatives, I emphasise the importance of a collaborative partnership between local NGOs and the ECCC in the implementation of the Court’s victim participation scheme. It is intended that the findings will provide insights not only into improved practices for victims participating in international criminal trials, but also to recognise the capacity of local NGOs, when combined with international criminal justice efforts, to assist in achieving wider complementary transitional justice aims for victims and their communities.
Biography James Nakis is a research student with a particular interest in transitional justice. He developed a passion for this field during his undergraduate studies at La Trobe University, where he completed his B.A. with honours in Legal Studies in 2011. His honours thesis examined Khmer Rouge survivor testimony during the first trial at the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC). After he graduated, James pursued further research by undertaking a Master’s thesis at La Trobe University (due for submission in early 2017). For the purposes of his thesis, he conducted field research in Cambodia in order to study the contribution of Cambodian NGOs to the ECCC’s victim participation scheme. James aspires to conduct further research on a range of issues relating to international criminal tribunals and victims’ access to justice.

Digital Art Installation

Location Moot Court W237, Level 2, Forgan Smith
Beyond Genocide: Silent Power Point Exhibition
Authors Amy Fagin, Beyond Genocide Centre for Prevention
Abstract This independent looping silent power point will provide an introduction to the series “Beyond Genocide”, a series of illuminated manuscripts narrating a documentary treatise of genocides and mass atrocity crimes around the globe. The power point includes overview of the series and case by case visual art experience of the individual compositions within the series. Details and meanings discovered by the artist will be presented as a visual “docent” by describing what and how certain details support the historical basis of the atrocity crime, and narrate the composition of the illumination. All completed illuminations from the emerging series will be included. Considerations regarding narratives of history and the “truths” that they represent are contextualized for individual observation and contemplation. This presentation creates a deeply contemplative experience on the trajectory and legacy of mass atrocity across time and space. The session loops independently and is recommended to be hosted in a darkened “screening room” where individuals can enter or leave independently. Hours of operation can be outlined in the schedule.
Biography Amy Fagin is a U.S. based visual artist specializing in the traditional art form of manuscript illumination. Her body of work represents a meta-modernist approach to the materials, techniques and theoretical principals used in manuscript illumination for contemporary consideration. She is author of Beyond Genocide; an emerging series of illuminations narrating a visual documentary arts perspective on global incidents of genocide and mass violence. Ms. Fagin is also an independent scholar in genocide studies and conducts research / seminars, lectures, workshops and advisory work on global initiatives of memory and memorialization through individual and collective arts expression and the museum experience. She has contributed expertise in international consultative events and currently serves on the advisory board of the International Association of Genocide Scholars. She regularly publishes editorials, reviews and essays on genocide, memory, memorialization, art and 21st century expression and education.