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date: 15 April 2024

p. 1789. Humanitarian Interventionlocked

p. 1789. Humanitarian Interventionlocked

  • Alan J. Kuperman


This chapter highlights the distinction between human rights and humanitarianism. Humanitarian intervention refers to the use of diplomatic, economic, and/or military resources by states or international organizations to protect civilians who are endangered in another state. The chapter notes the impossibility of attaining impartiality and neutrality when commencing humanitarian work during a civil war. Modern intervention often confronts human rights violations by naming, shaming, and coercing those who harm civilians. The chapter then recognizes the obstacles to effective and timely intervention such as political will and large-scale violence against civilians. It covers the case of Kosovo that showed how the international community should utilize its leverage to persuade oppressive states to meet the legitimate demands of nonviolent groups in an effort to simultaneously promote human rights and humanitarianism.

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