International Services

International Services
Exploring International
Humanitarian Law
What is International
Humanitarian Law?
International Humanitarian Law (IHL) is a body of
rules which in times of armed conflict, seek to
protect people who are not or are no longer taking
part in the fighting.
IHL also restricts the methods and means of
warfare employed.
IHL today is composed of two main sets of laws,
the Geneva Conventions, and the Hague
The Roots of IHL
• Throughout the 1700’s and up to the
beginning of the twentieth century,
philosophers, and law makers, and
governments began to develop laws and
treaties aimed at minimizing the death and
destruction of war.
Geneva Conventions
The protection of wounded and sick
soldiers on land (1864).
II. The protection of wounded and sick
soldiers at sea (1906).
III. The protection of prisoners of war
IV. The protection of civilians (1949).
Laws, Humanitarian
Organizations, and Human Dignity
in Times of Armed Conflict
Do you think it makes sense to have
Laws to limit the suffering in armed
Human Dignity
What is Human Dignity?
How would you define it?
What images come to mind when you hear the
word “war” or “armed conflict” ?
What wars are currently going on in the world today? In
Asia? What past wars do you know about?
Means of Warfare
Is everything allowed during
an armed conflict?
Should any Weapons be prohibited
in armed conflict? Which ones?
The Idea of “Enemy”
How would you define “enemy”?
Does an enemy ever deserve to be
protected during armed conflict?
What is a civilian?
How should civilians
be treated during
armed conflicts?
Why do children
sometimes take part in
armed conflicts?
Wounded Combatants
How do you believe a wounded enemy
combatant should be protected?
How should an enemy
prisoner be treated? Why?
Do you think civilian
women need special
protection in time of
war? What type of
Other Protected Persons
Does anyone else need special
protection in times of war?
Who? Why?
Protected Places in Times of War
Are there places that you think
should not be attacked? Which
places? Why?
Emblems in Use
Red Cross
Red Crescent
Red Shield (Star) of David
Principles of the
Red Cross and Red
For Further Information…
• On the web…
• American Red Cross – St. Louis
• International Committee of the Red Cross (in times of
armed conflict) -
• International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent
Societies (disaster relief) -
Thank you!

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