Fiona Terry

Fiona Terry

Independent researcher

Fiona Terry is an independent researcher who has been conducting studies for the Health Care in Danger project of the International Committee of the Red Cross. She holds a doctorate in international relations from the Australian National University, is the author of Condemned to Repeat? The Paradox of Humanitarian Action,* and is a member of the Editorial Board of the International Review of the Red Cross.

  • Book review: Humanitarian ethics: A guide to the morality of aid in war and disaster

    As the humanitarian enterprise faces some of its toughest challenges in trying to help people suffering from an unprecedented number of simultaneous conflicts and disasters around the world, Hugo Slim's new book Humanitarian Ethics: A Guide to the Morality of Aid in War and Disaster takes us on a fascinating journey into the heart of what it is we are trying to do, why we are doing it, and how. His deeply insightful examination of humanitarian ethics unpacks the values behind the humanitarian endeavour, the moral tensions that arise in carrying it out, and the ways in which humanitarian individuals and organizations can think through these issues and strive to act in the most responsible way they can.

  • Violence against health care: insights from Afghanistan, Somalia, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo

    This article explores the methodology and main findings of field studies conducted for the ICRC's Health Care in Danger project in Afghanistan, Somalia, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo between 2010 and 2013. It discusses some of the actions that the ICRC takes in its health programmes to facilitate access to health care, and its approach to promoting better respect for the laws protecting it. It then suggests what more needs to be done to curb the violence.

  • The International Committee of the Red Cross in Afghanistan: reasserting the neutrality of humanitarian action

    Neutrality as a guiding principle of humanitarian action was roundly rejected by most actors in Afghanistan’s latest conflict. One party to the conflict commandeered assistance and aid organizations into a counter-insurgency campaign, and the other rejected Western aid organizations as agents of an imperialist West. The murder in 2003 of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) water engineer Ricardo Munguia, because of what he symbolized, cast doubt on whether the ICRC could be perceived as neutral in this highly polarized context. Rather than abandon a neutral stance, however, as so many aid organizations did, the ICRC persevered and, through some innovative and sometimes risky initiatives, managed to show both sides the benefits of having a neutral intermediary in conflict. Today, the ICRC continues to expand its reach to Afghans in dire need of humanitarian assistance.