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Algeria: Students draw inspiration from Emir Abdelkader

04-07-2013 News Release 13/120

Algiers (ICRC) – Five Algerian students who wrote prize-winning essays on "Emir Abdelkader and international humanitarian law" in a competition organized for secondary schools in Algiers, Tizi-Ouzou, Constantine, Mascara and Adrar, will be in Geneva on a study trip from 4 to 8 July.

The competition was organized by the Algerian education ministry at the initiative of the Emir Abdelkader Foundation and with support from the delegation of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Algiers. It took place in conjunction with an international colloquium, also entitled "Emir Abdelkader and international humanitarian law," which took place in the Algerian capital from 28 to 30 May. The colloquium was held in connection with the 130th anniversary of Emir Abdelkader's death and the 150th anniversary of the ICRC's founding.

"By issuing a decree ordering his soldiers to refrain from harming French prisoners, Emir Abdelkader created a platform for developing international humanitarian law." This brief excerpt is taken from one of the winning entries in the essay competition.

International humanitarian law is a set of rules designed to limit the effects of armed conflict. It protects people not, or no longer, taking part in hostilities and sets limits on the means and methods of warfare. In particular, these rules are contained in the Geneva Conventions and their Additional Protocols, to which Algeria signed up in 1960 and 1989 respectively.

In close cooperation with the education ministry, the Algiers branch of the Emir Abdelkader Foundation plays host to a series of lectures on Emir Abdelkader intended for secondary school students. The talks, by specialists in the field, are given on the last Tuesday of every month in the Palais de la Culture.

For further information, please contact:
Lynda Bouali, ICRC Algiers, tel: +213 770 98 07 75

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