On the 26 September Alain Délétroz, Geneva Call’s Director General, took part in a high-level panel, organised in New York as part of the 73rd session of the General Assembly of the United Nations, entitled “Civilians Under Fire: Humanitarian Protection and Respect for International Humanitarian Law”. Several other distinguished figures from the international community were also on the panel, including the European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, the President of the International Committee of the Red Cross the Director General of Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid of EU ECHO, the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs in the French Government, and the Foreign Affairs Minister of Belgium.
Mr. Délétroz took advantage of this important opportunity to recall that the toll of armed conflict on civilians is immense and that armed conflict is a major cause of the widespread human suffering we are currently seeing across the world. He pointed out the danger represented by the ongoing erosion of humanitarian principles and stressed that the alleged violations of the Geneva Conventions by signatory states, which have been witnessed by the international community in recent years, makes the task of convincing armed non-State actors to comply with humanitarian principles all the more arduous. The full recording of the panel discussion can be viewed here.