The UN’s Response to the Arab Spring – One Year On

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A lecture by His Excellency Sir Mark Lyall Grant KCMG, British Permanent Representative to the United Nations (UN).

His Excellency Sir Mark Lyall Grant KCMGIn March 2010, the UN Security Council authorised the international community to take 'all necessary measures' to protect civilians in Libya - one of the most far-reaching military authorisations in UN history. Despite the success of the intervention in Libya, the UN's response to the Arab Spring elsewhere in the region has been more hesitant. One year on from the adoption of UN Security Council resolutions 1970 and 1973 on Libya, Ambassador Lyall Grant assessed the strengths and weaknesses of the UN response to the Arab Spring, discuss the impact of Libya on the dynamics within the 2012 UN Security Council and explored the prospects for future UN action in the conflicts of the Middle East and North Africa.

His Excellency Sir Mark Lyall Grant KCMG has been British Permanent Representative to the United Nations since November 2009. After studying law at Cambridge and qualifying as a Barrister at the Middle Temple, he decided against a career in the legal profession and joined the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) in 1980. During a distinguished career spanning more than 30 years, he has occupied a number of senior appointments within the FCO, including Head of the European Union Department (1998-2000), Director for Africa (2000-2003) and High Commissioner to Pakistan (2003-2006). Prior to taking up his current appointment, he served as Political Director in London from early 2007 to October 2009.

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