United Nations (UN) Peace Operations (POs) are central to the protection of civilians from egregious human rights violations. UN Peacekeepers have helped to minimise the intentional targeting of civilians, reduce conflict recidivism and provide immediate physical security for vulnerable populations. However, UN POs are yet to effectively integrate the ethos of atrocity prevention into their field missions.The purpose of this white paper is to determine how UN Peace Operations might better contribute to preventing atrocities in their territories of deployment. In doing so, the white paper proposes a reoriented approach to atrocity prevention – one that leverages existing civilian peacekeeper capabilities in UN POs. A burgeoning area of scholarly inquiry suggests that Protection of Civilians mandates are conceptually and operationally compatible with other UN human protection frameworks rooted in international law. As such, integrating an atrocity prevention ethos into POs is not likely to conflict with the missions’ operational agendas. Moreover, improving atrocity prevention mechanisms in POs may help to further the Human Rights Up Front Initiative and the Sustaining Peace agenda.

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