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Abstract: Le présent rapport se penche sur la fourniture irresponsable et/ou illégale d'armes et de matériel en
rapport aux parties en conflit en Côte d'Ivoire et sur leur utilisation abusive, plus particulièrement lors
du conflit armé de janvier à avril 2011. Il entend ainsi prouver la nécessité d'une action plus
énergique de la communauté internationale en vue d'aider la Côte d'Ivoire à mettre fin à la survenue
persistante de crimes relevant du droit international et de violations graves des droits humains, y
compris des cas de violences liées au genre envers les femmes et des filles.
Les points troublants abordés dans ce rapport posent des questions fondamentales à la communauté
internationale concernant l’absence de contrôle effectif par les États des transferts internationaux
d’armes classiques et notamment la facilité relative avec laquelle les embargos des Nations unies sur
les armes peuvent être tournés.
Sur la base d’une analyse des faits, le rapport propose des recommandations essentielles. Amnesty
International exhorte tous les États membres des Nations unies, ainsi que les États non membres
chargés d'une mission d'observateur permanent auprès des Nations unies, à déployer tous les efforts
possibles lors de la prochaine conférence finale des Nations unies sur le Traité sur le commerce des
armes, prévue du 18 au 28 mars 2013, pour se mettre d'accord sur un texte prévoyant des règles
solides pour protéger les droits humains et faire respecter le droit international humanitaire. Ces
règles doivent être cohérentes avec les obligations qui incombent aux États conformément au droit
international, et permettre aux États de réglementer de manière efficace, par le biais de mécanismes
de contrôle solides et transparents, tous types d'armes, de munitions et d'équipement associé, y
compris les technologies, les pièces et les composants. Amnesty International est convaincue que le
cas de la Côte d’Ivoire, parmi d'autres, offre la preuve que, sans la mise en oeuvre solide d'un Traité
solide sur le commerce des armes dans le monde, ainsi que d'autres mesures spécifiques prises par
la communauté internationale, les embargos sur les armes décidés par le Conseil de sécurité des
Nations unies, comme celui imposé à la Côte d'Ivoire en novembre 2004, continueront d'être violés.
Abstract: This policy brief examines the steps needed to improve women’s participation in peacekeeping, highlights the problem inherent in commonly cited arguments for increasing women peacekeepers and proposes key recommendations.
In recent years some UN member states have attempted to increase the number of women in peacekeeping operations (PKOs) (including introducing all-female units) as part of an effort to mainstream gender in UN institutions, but also to challenge and transform the predominantly masculine PKO culture. However, these efforts are largely isolated and ad hoc. While all these efforts aim at increasing the number of women participants in PKOs, achieving gender balance does not automatically translate into gender equality or gender mainstreaming.
To increase the meaningful participation of women in PKOs, women need to be integrated into senior, decision-making and leadership posts; all-female contingents should be trained and deployed in, and integrated into mixed-gender environments; and deploy women who are ready to substantively change the PKO environment. Numerical targets, women’s “feminine qualities” and quick fixes for addressing sexual violence in PKOs aside, policymakers should deploy women to assist in gender mainstreaming in PKOs and in changing local women’s lives.
Abstract: Bien qu’elle ait le potentiel d’être l’une des nations les plus riches d’Afrique, la RDC demeure en bas du podium sur la liste des pays en termes d’index de développement humain. Ceci est en partie dû à des structures étatiques faibles, à la corruption, aux problèmes de gouvernance, et à des décennies de violence qui continuent de toucher l’est du pays. Les groupes armés congolais et étrangers à l’Est se battent pour le pouvoir, pour les ressources naturelles, ou à cause de différences ethniques.
Abstract: This document provides an overview of the origins and current challenges of displacement flows by refugees and IDPs in Afghanistan. Furthermore, it presents, based on an open-source research, the potential flows that could occur in Afghanistan post 2014. Related information is available at www.cimicweb.org. Hyperlinks to source material are highlighted in blue and underlined in the text.
Abstract: This paper reports the results of a study undertaken during 2012 by Tufts University for the Assessment Capacities Project (ACAPS), as part of the latter’s “Operational Learning” strand of work. This study is designed to complement the work of ACAPS on strengthening needs assessment by addressing the question of how assessments and other sources of information and analysis are used by humanitarian decision makers. The study is based on a combination of literature review, case studies, and key informant interviews.
The pressure to demonstrate that responses and claims about impact are grounded in evidence has been growing over recent years. Humanitarian donors are increasingly under similar pressures to demonstrate effectiveness and account for impact. This is partly a matter of showing that their decisions regarding policies and programs are well-founded and evidence-based. But, humanitarian contexts are almost by definition ‘‘non-ideal” for gathering data. Decisions often have to be made quickly, sometimes with relatively little access to current information or accurate data. The question about informed decision making may therefore come down to what constitutes a “well enough” informed decision in the circumstances; or what constitutes “good enough” information and analysis on which to base a response. Whatever the quality of information, no assumption can be made that the increased availability of good information and analysis will in itself result in better informed decisions. In reviewing the way decisions are made in practice, the study considers the ways in which such information is used (or not) at different points in the process, which varies across different kinds of decisions in different contexts.
The study is based around three main questions. First, how do decision makers in the humanitarian sector currently use information and analysis? Second, what factors, other than information and analysis, are influential in making decisions? Third, what would enable better-informed response decisions? In order to address these overarching questions, the study looks first at some of the main processes of decision-making in the humanitarian sector and the factors that appear to have most influence on decisions of different kinds. It goes on to look at the way information and analysis is currently generated in the humanitarian sector—both through formal and informal means—and related questions of relevance and credibility. These two topics are then brought together in addressing the question of the use of information by decision makers, and what might enable more informed and evidence-based response decisions.
Abstract: Reckless and illegal arms supplies from Europe, Africa and China to the warring parties in Côte d'Ivoire over the past decade continue to fuel grave human rights abuses and violent crime in the country, Amnesty International said in a detailed report launched at the United Nations (UN) headquarters.
This report documents how a handful of states and a network of multinational arms traffickers supplied weapons and munitions to both sides in the conflict who committed war crimes and a range of human rights abuses including horrific violence against women and girls.
The arms transfers took place both before and after the UN Security Council imposed an arms embargo on the country in November 2004.
Abstract: The International Dialogue on Migration 2012 aims to enhance synergies between humanitarian and migration perspectives in the search for appropriate responses to migration crises. The second workshop in the series focuses on the plight of migrants who are caught up in crises in their countries of transit or destination. When countries of destination or transit experience political turmoil, conflict or natural disasters, their migrant populations often have few means to escape and ensure their own safety. Risks and vulnerabilities are exacerbated when migrants are in an irregular situation, or when countries of origin lack the resources, capacity and access to protect and assist their nationals abroad. Some migrants may be unable or unwilling to leave the crisis zone, while others may be forced to cross borders into neighbouring countries. As a result, repercussions may be felt regionally and beyond. Ultimately, migrants may escape crises by returning or being evacuated to their countries of origin, but challenges do not end there: countries of origin may struggle to receive and reintegrate large numbers of returnees, while the sudden loss of remittances may leave their families and home communities without income. The departure of migrant workers may also leave gaps in the labour markets of countries of destination which may in fact depend on migrant labour for post-crisis recovery and reconstruction.
The overall objective of the workshop is to support States in devising a framework of policies and actions to address the situation of migrants in crisis situations. Consistent with IOM's mandate and Strategy Document (activity 7), the IDM provides a forum for IOM Member and Observer States, as well as international and non-governmental organizations and other partners, to share experiences and perspectives on migration matters with a view to identifying practical solutions and fostering greater cooperation.
Abstract: After years of intense, cartel-related bloodshed that has claimed tens of thousands of lives and shaken Mexico, new President Enrique Peña Nieto is promising to reduce the murder rate. The security plan he introduced with the backing of the three biggest parties gives Mexico a window of opportunity to build institutions that can produce long-term peace and cut impunity rates. But he faces many challenges. The cartels have thousands of gunmen and have morphed into diversified crime groups that not only traffic drugs, but also conduct mass kidnappings, oversee extortion rackets and steal from the state oil industry. The military still fights them in much of the country on controversial missions too often ending in shooting rather than prosecutions. If Peña Nieto does not build an effective police and justice system, the violence may continue or worsen. But major institutional improvements and more efficient, comprehensive social programs could mean real hope for sustainable peace and justice.
The development of cartels into murder squads fighting to control territory with military-grade weapons challenges the Mexican state’s monopoly on the use of force in some regions. The brutality of their crimes undermines civilian trust in the government’s capacity to protect them, and the corruption of drug money damages belief in key institutions. Cartels challenge the fundamental nature of the state, therefore, not by threatening to capture it, but by damaging and weakening it. The military fight-back has at times only further eroded the trust in government by inflicting serious human rights abuses. Some frustrated communities have formed armed “self-defence” groups against the cartels. Whatever the intent, these also degrade the rule of law.
Abstract: Colombia has one of the longest-running armed conflicts in the world, as well as the highest number of internally displaced persons (IDPs). Oxfam research in the department of Nariño and in the Montes de María area of the department of Bolivar found that the Colombian government’s stabilization program (the National Consolidation Plan, or NCP) has not promoted peace, good governance, or sustainable development, as intended. The United States is one of the leading donors to NCP, along with Spain and the Netherlands. In the areas where we carried out our research, our interviewees clearly indicated that the NCP and other stabilization efforts had failed to make communities more secure, often leaving them less safe. We found severe limitations in attempts to promote conflict-sensitive development. This briefing paper explores these issues and offers recommendations to improve both security and development in Nariño and Montes de María.
Abstract: In South Sudan, widespread euphoria following independence in July 2011 has given way to disappointment that expected peace dividends have not materialised. Many South Sudanese are experiencing insecurity, a lack of access to basic services, and increasing inequalities. Pastoralist and agro-pastoralist communities in remote border areas are particularly affected by insecurity and by a lack of social services, and women are particularly marginalised. This report is the result of Oxfam research to enable the needs and views of conflict-affected communities to be voiced, heard, and addressed, particularly in relation to security and livelihoods and with an emphasis on women’s participation. It focuses on the security concerns expressed by the communities themselves: conflict within and between communities, cattle raiding, and violence against women.
Abstract: A UN research into the human rights situation in detention centers in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) shows that the number of deaths in detention almost doubled in 2012, and that conditions of detention remain extremely poor in the vast majority of detention centres.
Between January 2010 and December 2012, a total of at least 211 civilians died in Congolese detention centers. In 2012, 101 such deaths were recorded compared to 54 in 2010 and 56 in 2011. The report notes that poor conditions, including overcrowding, malnutrition, limited access to health care and lack of resources, were the main causes of death, but also says that more than 10 percent of the deaths (24 cases) were caused by torture or ill-treatment, a finding it describes as “extremely worrying.”
The report, published Wednesday, details the results of in-depth research conducted by human rights officers working for the UN Joint Human Rights Office in the DRC (UNJHRO)* during visits to prisons and other detention centers throughout the country.
Abstract: More than 14 years after they first fled
their homes, at least 29,000 people are
still internally displaced due to armed
conflict and violence in the North
Caucasus, and an unknown number of
people are still displaced elsewhere in
Displacement induced by the threat
and impact of natural hazards, especially
floods and wild fires, continues to
be significant in Russia. Though information
on such displacement and the
current situation of these IDPs is scarce.
Government figures of the number of internally displaced are not in line with international
standards and international organisations stopped compiling statistics on IDPs
displaced by armed conflict and violence in 2011. The lack of accurate figures limits the
government’s ability to effectively uphold IDPs’ rights and address their specific needs.
Despite massive reconstruction and the declaration that the conflicts in North Ossetia
and Chechnya are resolved, violence and human rights abuses are ongoing and impunity
of insurgents and law enforcement authorities continues in the region. This obstructs sustainable
return and integration.
The protracted conflict and insecurity, as well as dwindling assistance, lack of permanent
housing and economic stagnation are obstacles to their self-reliance. Internal displacement
is losing attention but not pertinence.
Abstract: The war in Syria is currently in a particularly complex phase with conflicting reports of rebel progress. Jihadist militias are growing in strength and capability, making it probable that they will have considerable influence and even power in a post-Assad Syria. At the same time, there are indications that elements supporting the Assad regime, including the Iranian government, recognise this and are planning for the aftermath with their own militias.
Abstract: The global governance of humanitarianism has historically been state-centric but although a state-led and state-coordinated response is crucial and saves lives, by itself, it has limitations.
In response to the challenges faced by the sector, this paper puts forward an alternative vision based on the role of ‘humanitarian innovation’. The paper explores the potential of humanitarian innovation to transform core elements of the global governance of humanitarianism in general and refugee protection in particular.
It is structured in three broad sections. The first section provides a background to the work of UNHCR and the way in which the organisation is gradually incorporating a role for the private sector and innovation into its work. The second section explains what innovation is and how and why it is relevant to refugee protection.
In the third section, the paper sets out a vision for humanitarian innovation within the refugee context based on integrating a ‘looking inwards’ approach that builds upon refugees own ideas and agency and a ‘looking outwards’ approach that seeks to identify outside partners and solution-holders whose products, processes and mentorship might nurture and incubate innovation emerging at the local and national levels.
Abstract: Accessories for small arms and light weapons have become increasingly sophisticated, making weapons more lethal and more versatile. Their trade, both in civilian and military markets, is often not given the degree of attention paid to the weapons themselves.
Accessories for Small Arms and Light Weapons, a new Research Note from the Small Arms Survey, defines accessories, explores their usage on the modern battlefield, and assesses the international trade in these items. The research note focuses on five subsets of accessories:
night vision devices,
laser rangefinders, and
The Survey estimates the annual international trade in such items to be worth hundreds of millions of dollars. But data on international transfers of accessories is sparse: reporting requirements are quite limited, national reporting is vague or non-existent, and little is known about the illicit acquisition and use of accessories by armed groups and criminals.
This Research Note summarizes existing data on small arms accessories and highlights the gaps in this data.
Abstract: This is a transcript of an event held at Chatham House on 12 March 2013.
The panel discussed the international community's role in supporting Afghanistan after the 2014 withdrawal of international troops, including strategies for building up local security, the possibility of reconciliation with the Taliban, and how to address ongoing humanitarian needs in the country.
Speakers included: Dr Robert Johnson, Jawed Nader, Matt Waldman.
Abstract: The withdrawal of international troops seems to have set in motion the beginning of a stampede whose consequences will only be known over time. Limiting the damage of what looks like a widespread and comprehensive withdrawal at all levels from governments, companies or individuals will be crucial for the stability of Afghanistan.
There is nothing fundamentally wrong with the withdrawal provided that the necessary assets, funding and support are put in place to fill the vacuum left by the international forces. Should this not be guaranteed, the current fears of growing insecurity could become a reality triggering or exacerbating some of the current negative trends.
The gradual decline of aid, if properly managed is not intrinsically bad. As the World Bank points out “less aid with more effective aid delivery could, in the end, lead to more positive outcomes”.
The resurgence of the Taleban insurgency in 2006 started to reverse the prevailing trust and optimism of the business community. This trend has been exacerbated since the announcement of the withdrawal calendar in 2009.
The burden of, and the capacity for, changing reality on the ground for investors remains largely in the hands of the Afghan government through the implementation of the necessary reforms and actions that would guarantee a reasonable level of hard and economic security.
Both, the transition and post transition periods pose a series of great challenges. However none are really new to the country, just the means to tackle them and the division of labour.
Abstract: In late 2012, the Burma Army intensified military operations against strongholds of the
Kachin Independence Army (KIA). This culminated in a massive offensive on the KIA
headquarters at Laiza on the China-Burma border starting in mid-December. This month-long
assault involved repeated mortar shelling and aerial bombings in the Laiza area, populated by
20,000 civilians, over half of whom are internally displaced persons (IDPs) who were denied
refuge in China.
This report documents the killing or injury of 26 civilians, including women, children and the
elderly, in Burmese artillery attacks in five areas during the recent military operations. The
repeated authorization of artillery fire into areas populated by civilians, as well as deliberate
torching of villages and IDP shelters, represent serious breaches of international humanitarian
law, and are likely to amount to war crimes.
The humanitarian situation in Kachin areas remains critical, with 364 villages wholly or
partially abandoned, and over 100,000 people internally displaced. Hardly any international
aid has been provided to the 66,000 IDPs in Kachin-controlled areas.
There has been little international condemnation of the Burma Army aggression in Kachin
State. Foreign governments appear more interested in pursuing diplomatic and economic
engagement with Burma’s military-backed government. However, silence on the Burmese
military’s crimes risks plunging Burma deeper into civil war, by emboldening Burma’s rulers
to continue using force to crush the ethnic resistance movements.
The international community must strongly condemn the crimes committed by the Burma
Army, and pressure the Burmese government to end all military aggression, begin troop
withdrawal from Kachin areas of Burma, and enter into political dialogue with the Kachin
Independence Army to address the demands for ethnic equality at the root of the conflict.
Abstract: The dead bodies found every day in towns and villages across Syria bearing marks of execution-style killing and torture are the grim evidence of mounting war crimes and other abuses being committed not just by government forces, but also by armed opposition groups in the context of the country’s bitter internal armed conflict. This briefing looks at serious abuses, some amounting to war crimes, committed by the burgeoning number of armed opposition groups operating in Syria, focusing mainly on summary killings.
Abstract: Civilians continue to be at the receiving end of increasingly frequent indiscriminate
attacks by Syrian government forces. Imprecise weapons designed for the battlefield are
killing, maiming and displacing growing numbers of civilians – many of them children.
Unguided air-delivered bombs, artillery, rockets, and ballistic missiles which cannot be
aimed at specific targets and do not distinguish between military targets and civilian
objects, and internationally banned cluster munitions are being used daily against civilian
residential areas in towns and villages, in utter disregard for the most fundamental
principles of international humanitarian law.
Government forces also continue to commit other grave violations, including war crimes,
notably they frequently arbitrarily detain, torture, disappear and extrajudicially execute
men and boys suspected of support for armed opposition groups fighting the state or of
support for political opposition to the government of President Bashar al-Assad.
In a recent two-week investigation in northern Syria Amnesty International visited 17
towns and villages in the Idlib, Jabal al-Zawiya and Jisr al-Shughour areas and Aleppo
city, and carried out field investigations into indiscriminate attacks which killed more
than 310 civilians (including more than 157 children and 52 women) and injured
hundreds of others. The organization’s findings show that the frequency and scale of such
attacks – which constitute war crimes - has increased in recent months, with disastrous
consequences for the civilian population.
Abstract: EISF's Report explores the costs related to safety and security management for aid programmes. It aims to assist all aid practitioners to determine their risk management expenditure more accurately, and demonstrate an evidence-based approach when presenting this information to donors.
The paper will be particularly relevant to those responsible for programme planning and management, donor proposal writing, as well as safety and security risk management.
Aid donors may also find this text useful as it proposes methods and approaches for organisations to communicate and justify clearly their risk management resource needs.
Aid organisations must strive to achieve value for money while at the same time meeting humanitarian needs with limited resources, ensuring fiscal accountability, and meeting their duty of care to staff working in the field. This report considers how organisations can meet these challenges, and justify their expenditure to donors, the public and their beneficiaries.
The paper draws on evidence from outside the aid sector to examine how organisations could determine and record risk management costs. The result is a paper that the authors hope will stimulate further debate, leading to the development of practical tools and methodologies for costing security risk management. Some parts of the paper present known practices, other parts propose ideas to guide future policy and procedures.
Abstract: In a new report, "Childhood Under Fire," launched to mark two years of violence in Syria, Save the Children details the impact of the conflict on children, showing that many are struggling to find enough to eat; are living in barns, parks and caves; are unable to go to school with teachers having fled and schools being attacked; and that damage to sanitation systems is forcing some children to defecate in the street.
Citing new research carried out amongst refugee children by Bahcesehir University in Turkey, the report also reveals the extent to which children have been directly targeted in the war, with one in three children reporting having been hit, kicked or shot at.
Combined with the breakdown of society in parts of the country and more than three million people displaced, the conflict has led to the collapse of childhood for millions of youngsters.
"Childhood under Fire" details how some young boys are being used by armed groups as porters, runners and human shields, bringing them close to the frontline, while some girls are being married off early to 'protect' them from a widely-perceived threat of sexual violence.
Abstract: Fearful of the fallout from the rise of Islamism, global jihad and chemical weapons, Israel and Jordan have adopted a policy of containment and damage limitation towards Syria’s two-year civil war, leaving the warring parties to spar with and weaken each other. The two countries have expressed hopes for the demise of the Assad regime, but unlike Syria’s other neighbours – Turkey, Lebanon and Iraq – they have stopped short of allowing the rebels to open conduits through their territories. Unlike Syria’s other crossings, official border crossings into Jordan have remained either closed or in government hands. The Syrian uprising began in the south, in Dara’a on Jordan’s borders, but bereft of supply lines to sustain itself, it quickly moved north, closer to borders where the rebels were better able to procure the fuel, arms, and men required to take and hold territory. However, Israel’s and Jordan’s hands-off posture could be changing. Israel has reportedly bombed a consignment of Syrian arms apparently bound for Lebanon. And such is Jordan’s need to replenish its depleted coffers and so great its fear of popular discontent that in return for increased financial aid it is increasingly bowing to Saudi pressure to open its borders to rebel supplies, bolstering the performance of rebel forces in the south after a series of setbacks. Jordan hopes that Western reinforcements along its northern border will protect it against the chances of blowback. But the risks are manifold. Unlike Iraq’s conflict, from which Jordan was cushioned by 700 kilometres of desert, the war in Syria rages on Jordan’s populous northern border. Already 300,000 refugees have spilled into the kingdom, and both Jordan and Israel fear the conflict could increasingly travel with them.
Abstract: As the crisis in Syria enters its third tragic year, and
the daily headlines focus on military clashes and
political efforts to resolve the crisis, the world must
not forget the human realities at stake. The risk of
losing a generation grows with every day that the
situation deteriorates, while the progress made for
Syrian children in previous years is undone.
All around them, their dreams and opportunities
for the future are being lost. And as they lose
their childhoods . . . as their right to be children is
denied . . . their views of their neighbours are
coloured in ways that can create future
generations of self-perpetuating violence. With all
that implies for the region as a whole.
Children face tremendous dangers on a daily
basis. They are being killed, maimed and
orphaned by conflict. Health clinics that have not
been damaged or destroyed struggle to deliver
life-saving services. Clean water and adequate
sanitation – the most fundamental of daily
necessities – are increasingly scarce.
Many schools have been damaged, destroyed or
taken over by displaced people seeking shelter.
Countless children suffer from the psychological
trauma of seeing family members killed, of being
separated from their parents and being terrified
by the constant thunder of shelling. Girls and
women are further vulnerable to violence.
Many have fled their country to live in refugee
camps in neighbouring countries. And if all this
were not enough, they are enduring a bitterly cold
UNICEF and its partners are committed to
keeping Syria’s children from becoming a ‘lost
generation’. This report highlights some of the
critical efforts made to minimize the impact of the
crisis on children - including in life-saving areas
of health, nutrition, immunization, water and
sanitation, as well as investments in the future of
children through education and child protection.