International Humanitarian Law

Disseminate Principles of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) and Proper Use of Emblems

One of the purposes of the Ethiopian Red Cross Society (ERCS) is to protect the lives and dignity of victims of armed conflicts and other situations of violence, and to provide them with assistance. One way in which the ERCS fulfills this purpose is by disseminating the principles of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) to prevent violations by all parties to an armed conflict of international or non-international nature. Moreover, ERCS works to promote the proper use of the Red Cross Emblem to avoid its misuse during peace and war times, alike.

Ethiopia is party to the major conventions that constitute IHL, including the 1949 Geneva Conventions (I-IV)and their Additional Protocols of the 1977; the 1925 Geneva Gas Protocol, the 1954 Hague Convention on Cultural Property, among others. Moreover, Ethiopia is a signatory to the 2005 Third Additional Protocol to the Geneva Conventions. This brings a duty to respect these set of standards during armed conflicts.

IHL consists of the 1949 Geneva Conventions, the 1977 additional protocols and other conventions and resolutions towards the alleviation of the situation of armed conflict by limiting the means and methods of warfare and protecting individuals and objects who are not or no more involved in hostilities.

However, the primary responsibility to prevent violations of IHL is up on the government, the ERCS, as an auxiliary to public authorities, works on the dissemination of the principles of IHL. So far trainings and seminars aimed at dissemination of the principles of IHL and proper use of emblems have been offered for ERCS governance, employees, members and volunteers. Moreover, members of the judicial organs of the government (including judges, public prosecutors, police officers, and prison administrators), journalists, members of the national defense force, university lecturers and students, the general public and the youth are the present and future targets of these dissemination activities.



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