Past eventInvitation OnlyResearch Event

Humanitarian Engagement with Non-State Armed Groups

4 November 2015 - 2:00pm to 5:00pm

Chatham House, London



With growing numbers of civilians being directly or indirectly impacted by the presence and activities of non-state armed groups (NSAGs), Chatham House is exploring the attitude and willingness of states to provide consent for, or not to block, engagement with them by humanitarian actors. While there are many precedents for such engagement, many states are wary of or hostile towards this kind of activity.

Key considerations include awareness of international humanitarian law by parties to conflict; how the parties perceive the risks and benefits of humanitarian actors’ engagement with their adversaries; the approach and activities of humanitarian actors, whether NGOs, the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement or the United Nations; the attitude of regional states and donors towards such engagement; and the degree to which the concerns and priorities of ordinary people caught up in conflict are seen as relevant.

This roundtable will discuss findings of Chatham House research in this area, and consider a number of propositions regarding principled engagement by humanitarian actors with NSAGs. These are intended to contribute to the preparatory discussions and outcome of the World Humanitarian Summit.

The Chatham House Rule

To enable as open a debate as possible, this event will be held under the Chatham House Rule.