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Genocide II

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Genocide II

Genocide (or genocide or genocide ) is a crime under international law defined by the United Nations General Assembly in Resolution 96(1) as “the denial of the right to existence of an entire human group.” [1] Genocide in its practical implementation is often equivalent to mass murder of a specific group, although other acts are also included in the definition. From a formal legal point of view, genocide is not a war crime , because it is not a violation of the laws of war , moreover, genocide can also be committed in peacetime.

It is generally believed that the term “genocide” was introduced into international law by the Polish-Jewish jurist Raphael Lemkin , who became implicated in the Nuremberg Tribunal after fleeing Poland . [2] Benjamin Ferencz , the special chief prosecutor of members of Einsatzgruppen during the Nuremberg Trials 1945-1946, deliberately used the term in his plea, despite it not yet appearing in any law code. A legal “mortal sin”, which, however, helped advance international criminal law . [3]

The United Nations adopted the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide in 1948 at the General Assembly in Paris . In it, the contracting parties affirmed that genocide is an international crime and committed themselves to prevent and punish this crime. This convention defines genocide in Article 2 as:

Historical Genocides

It is true that the word genocide only dates from 1944 and only found international acceptance when it became the subject of the treaty against it that was concluded in 1948. The phenomenon referred to by this word, however, turns out to be unprecedentedly old in a historical retrospect. Since the term was introduced, events in many places and moments in history could be recognized retroactively.

In the New Age, i.e. after the year 1500, expansionism and colonization led to large-scale massacres of European states in other parts of the world. These often took on the character of campaigns of extermination when conquering armies encountered opposition to their expeditions. To begin with, Spanish and Portuguese navigators who arrived in the Canary Islands as early as the 15th centuryfound inhabitants (“savages”) and then expeditionary forces of these countries in South America and then British in India and French in North Africa. Also Dutch in East Indies, later Dutch East Indies. Indigenous authorities often collaborated with the invading force to maintain or strengthen their power. In the process of decolonization from 1945 to 1975, the large-scale destruction in the wars of liberation and its suppression by the colonial powers was repeated. A belated attempt at colonization and large-scale destruction was staged by Japan during its World War II conquest of East and Southeast Asia .

The following historical genocides are mentioned in publications of the Holocaust and Genocide Studies department of the Netherlands Institute for War Documentation: [6] [7]

This work © 2023 by Wikipedia is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

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