Statement made by H.E. Ambassador Katalin Bogyay, Permanent Representative of Hungary, during the informal interactive dialogue held on 8 September 2015 on the report of the Secretary-General on the Responsibility to Protect.
We thank the Secretary-General for his excellent stocktaking report issued on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the R2P principle. We also commend him for his strategic approach and the well-chosen priorities for the next decade.
While fully supporting the statements delivered by the European Union and the Group of Friends of the R2P, please allow me to add a few observations in my national capacity.
Hungary is of the view that on the 10th anniversary of the R2P principle and the 70th anniversary of the UN, it is high time for the international community to renew and enhance its enduring commitment to protect populations from genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing.
We welcome the deepening institutionalization of the principle e.g. through the adoption by the Security Council and the Human Rights Council of numerous resolutions that reference the norm, but we also note that the General Assembly lags behind in this respect.
While we recognize the usefulness of the informal interactive dialogues, Hungary strongly supports R2P to be moved onto the formal agenda of the General Assembly. We also call for the adoption of a resolution marking the 10th anniversary and in which we – member states – could reaffirm our commitment to paragraphs 138 and 139 of the 2005 World Summit Outcome. After years of conceptual debates and our joint failure to prevent and effectively respond to crises in many parts of the world, it is imperative to shift our focus towards building a strong global partnership for the implementation of all three pillars of the norm.
Hungary agrees that our priority should be the prevention of atrocity crimes. In this context, we fully support the Secretary-General’s Human Rights Up Front initiative and we applaud the UN Office on Genocide Prevention and the Responsibility to Protect for developing two highly useful tools for prevention, namely the ‘Framework of Analysis for Atrocity Crimes’ and the forthcoming ‘Compendium of Practice’.
In order to ensure more timely and decisive response by the Security Council, Hungary – as a member of the ACT (Accountability, Coherence, Transparency) group – has actively participated in elaborating a “Code of Conduct regarding Security Council action against genocide, crimes against humanity or war crimes”. By endorsing this Code, the given State, who is or who may in the future serve as a member of the Security Council, pledge not to vote against such credible Council resolutions that aim to prevent or end the commission of atrocity crimes. We encourage all Member States to join this initiative and express their support to this Code, which represents a unique chance to not only improve the Security Council’s ability to prevent and respond to atrocities and thus putting the R2P principle into practice, but also an opportunity to preserve the Council’s legitimacy as the guardian of international peace and security.
Hungary shares the view that ensuring accountability for atrocity crimes – due to its proven deterrent effect – is one of the best ways to prevent their recurrence. Bringing perpetrators to justice also helps to heal the wounds of societies torn by such crimes. In this context, we acknowledge the crucial role played by the International Criminal Court in the battle to end impunity for atrocity crimes, when national criminal accountability mechanisms are not available.
As our last point, we recognize the important role of regional organizations and civil society in advancing atrocity prevention and the implementation of R2P. In this respect, we especially welcome the appointment of the EU R2P Focal Point.
I thank you, Mr. President!