Delegate Name: Reagan Overmyer
Human history has been stained by events of death and violence against one another. One form of this is genocide, where a group of people make an attempt to eradicate another group and/or their culture. There was never a specific term for this until after WWII, when human rights activists brought forward the concept of genocide. Genocide is a very specific term that refers to violent crimes committed against a certain group as an attempt to eradicate the group as a whole. Before the term genocide was introduced, acts like that fell under more general terms; massacres, mass murder, inhumanity and barbarism.
Denmark currently relies on its status as a party to the Genocide Convention to maintain its right to intervene in proceedings regarding genocide. In a recent declaration of intervention, Denmark has stated that “The Genocide Convention is of utmost importance to prevent and punish genocide.” Denmark also says that “By intervening in this case, (it) wishes to reaffirm this collective commitment to upholding the rights and obligations contained in the Convention, including by supporting the crucial role of the Court and emphasizing that international co-operation is required to prevent, adjudicate on and punish acts of genocide”. Before Denmark ratified the Geneva Conventions, multiple proposals were made: to conduct a study on the impact of these conventions, create a commentary on the conventions, to set up a committee to coordinate and oversee implementation of them, and work closely with other Nordic countries. It was found that Danish legislation was almost entirely consistent with the 1977 Additional Protocols and only measures for implementation were put in place.
Denmark is compliant with international humanitarian law, and believes that the best way to handle this is to add the relevant provisions into domestic legislation, as previously seen with the European Convention on Human Rights. Denmark also believes that dissemination of humanitarian law in different sectors of the civilian population should be prioritized in the years to come. Denmark is advocating for countries to come together to detect and stop genocides before they happen.
“Implementation of International Humanitarian Law by Denmark – ICRC.” International Review of the Red Cross, 31 Oct. 1997, www.icrc.org/en/doc/resources/documents/article/other/57jnvf.htm#:~:text=Before%20the%20ratification%20by%20Denmark. Accessed 20 Nov. 2023.
Allegations of Genocide under the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. 2022, www.icj-cij.org/public/files/case-related/182/182-20220916-PRE-03-00-EN.pdf.
United Nations. “War Crimes.” Un.org, 2022, www.un.org/en/genocideprevention/war-crimes.shtml.
“Universal Jurisdiction: A Preliminary Survey of Legislation around the World – 2012 Update.” Amnesty International, www.amnesty.org/en/documents/IOR53/019/2012/en/.