Policy perspectives on the use of the humanitarian principles

This event will analyse the normative framework of humanitarian action in armed conflict.

Research event, Workshop Invitation only
29 November 2021 — 1:30PM TO 5:30PM
Chatham House and Online

Since the adoption of the Geneva Conventions in 1949 and their Additional Protocols in 1977, together commonly referred to as “international humanitarian Law” (IHL), humanitarian action for civilians in situations of ongoing armed conflict by organisations of the United Nations system, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and NGOs has taken place under an evolving interpretation of what it means to comply with “humanitarian principles,” widely recognized as humanity, impartiality, neutrality and independence.

During a period in which the political context for humanitarian action in situations of ongoing armed conflict has evolved significantly, ranging from counter-terrorism measures and sanctions to changing UN Security Council practice, the organizations claiming to operate in accordance with the humanitarian principles have faced growing difficulties in their efforts to do so.

This workshop will examine the normative framework and application of the humanitarian principles in situations of active armed conflict. During the workshop, we will seek to better understand how humanitarian organisations understand and use the humanitarian principles in practice in conflict zones, and identify any challenges for humanitarian organisations in adhering to the principles of impartiality and independence, in particular. We will seek to gather insights and perspectives on the humanitarian principles from policy experts.

We will bring together policy experts from the humanitarian community with the objective of providing policy recommendations for principled humanitarian action in conflict.

This workshop is part of an International Security Programme research project, Sanguine Mirage: The false comfort of the humanitarian imperative, funded by the Governments of Germany, Sweden and Switzerland. 

This is an invitation only event.

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