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Genocide is thé crime of crimes which shocks the conscience of mankind the most because of the unspeakable damage and pain it causes. This book studies the obligation to prevent genocide under international law and more particularly the extent of that obligation under the Genocide Convention and customary international law.
Although, this obligation is recognised in public international law, the issue what this obligation actually entails has not received much attention in scholarly works and in practice. Even recent debates focused on intervention at the stage where genocide is about to be committed or is being committed, ignoring prevention at early stages. Yet, such early prevention is pivotal in order to effectively reduce the risk of genocide.
Drawing upon, inter alia, the 2007 Genocide judgment of the International Court of Justice, the author puts forward a distinction between primary, secondary and tertiary levels of prevention of genocide . Within this temporal structure, he analyses and applies the obligation to prevent genocide by states and the United Nations.
This leads to a clarification of that legal obligation by filling it with concrete international legal measures to be taken by both states and the United Nations at each level, and by suggesting improvements which include the creation of national and international institutions to actively promote and monitor the prevention of genocide.