The Charter of the United Nations, the UN’s foundational document which created the UN in 1945, begins as follows: “We The Peoples of the United Nations determined to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind, …”
Three years later, in 1948, the Genocide Convention (Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide) was concluded (entering into force in 1951). In Article 1 of this treaty the States Parties “confirm that genocide, whether committed in time of peace or in time of war, is a crime under international law which they undertake to prevent and to punish.” According to the Preamble, genocide is “contrary to the spirit and aims of the United Nations and condemned by the civilized world.” Yet genocide is still persisting today.
As we remember the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, here are some educational resources on the topic of genocide:
- Outreach Programme on the Rwanda Genocide and the United Nations – an elaborate website with educational materials, a multi media section and information about annual commemorations.
- The Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide – a well-documented website on preventing genocide and the responsibility to protect.
- The 8 Stages of Genocide, formulated by Gregory H. Stanton, President of Genocide Watch.
NGO Office, March 2015