XVI. Humanitarian Congress Berlin

22. September 2014 at 16:24

16HCB10th and 11th October 2014, Berlin, Germany

“Protection: A broken Promise”

Since the emergence of the modern international system based on nation-states, the protection of civilians within its boundaries has been the central responsibility of the state. This protection is not limited to physical safety but also encompasses a positive obligation by the state to safeguard the rights of the people within its boundaries.

These rights and obligations have later been canonized in various bodies of law such as international humanitarian law – also known as the law of armed conflict – which seeks to protect both soldiers who are no longer combatants and civilians from the scourge of war. The concept of protection was further enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which mentions the concept nine times in its 30 Article.

Since then, the term has seen a wide proliferation and has become omnipresent in the humanitarian jargon. Yet, as many observers have pointed out, its contours remain vague.

As a result, while many have heralded the integration of protection into the day-to-day activities of humanitarian relief agencies as a positive step towards greater respect for human rights and a step towards a more human relief mechanism, some have pointed out that usage of the term “protection” is often no more than a discursive practice, which has had, at best, only a marginal impact on populations most at risk.

This tension between the actual concept, the way it is implemented and its actual impact sets the stage for this year’s Humanitarian Congress Berlin.

Over the two congress days, our ambition will be to attempt to answer the question if the promise of protection has been broken.

As this is no small task, we are delighted to have the opportunity to welcome around 70 experts in the field of humanitarian assistance who will assist us in trying to tackle this complex and relevant questions. The congress will offer a unique mix of medical and political panels, keynote speeches and engaging debates and provide room for meeting other humanitarians seeking to assist people in desperate need.

Last but by no means least, we are delighted to welcome Lieutenant-General Roméo Dallaire, who will open the conference on 10th October 20014.

For more information on our program and to register, please visit our website.

 

Tip: More up to date educational events dealing with healthcare can be found online on the Education Database »medicine & health«.