Fifth report on the EU guidelines on promoting compliance with IHL is launched.
To take stock of its achievements in this area, the Council Working Group on Public International Law (COJUR) presented its fifth report on these guidelines on 14th December 2022. The report provides an overview of actions taken by the EU in 2021. These include public statements, political dialogues, training, cooperation with international organisations and other partners (e.g. with UN and ICRC) and support provided to the International Criminal Court and other mechanisms established to ensure that those responsible for serious violations of IHL are held accountable.
Furthermore, the launch - jointly organised by the Czech Presidency of the Council of the EU and France – represented a platform to bring together experts from EU member states, EU institutions, ICRC and humanitarian stakeholders, academia, and the general public to identify how the EU can strengthen the promotion of compliance with IHL. Particular attention was given to the EU's role in the global fight to end impunity for grave breaches of IHL and to help to provide justice and redress for the victims of violations.
Lack of respect for IHL is the number one challenge in armed conflicts, leading to suffering and increased humanitarian needs. The ICRC welcomes the EU's reiterated and continuous commitment to promote and ensure better respect for IHL. ICRC welcomes the publication of this annual report as we see it as a great example of how major actors like the EU can review their activities to gain insights into best practices to apply to future efforts.