News release

Mali: Parliamentarians sharpen their awareness of international humanitarian law

Bamako (ICRC) – Members of the Malian parliament are taking part in a daylong event in Bamako today that is intended to raise awareness of their role in promoting and implementing international humanitarian law at national level.

"It is the responsibility of lawmakers to enact legislation that will incorporate international humanitarian law in domestic legislation in an effective manner," said Christoph Luedi, head of the delegation of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Mali. "By adhering to the four Geneva Conventions and their Additional Protocols, Mali committed itself to implement and promote laws ensuring that the rules of this field of law will be applied at national level. Members of parliament have an important role to play in this."

At the event organized by the ICRC together with the Mali Red Cross, participants will be informed about the current status of implementation in Mali of treaties of international humanitarian law. In addition, they will learn about the ICRC's advisory service which can be called upon to help draft national implementation legislation. They will also have the opportunity to broaden their knowledge of the mandate and role of the ICRC.

"Mali has ratified almost all the treaties of international humanitarian law, but the inclusion of their provisions in domestic law remains incomplete," said Mr Luedi. "For humanitarian law to achieve greater respect it must first be fully incorporated in national legislation. This event will provide a basis for achieving that aim."

International humanitarian law is a set of rules that protects civilians in armed conflict by setting limits on the conduct of hostilities. The ICRC encourages States to ratify treaties of international humanitarian law and provides them with technical support to write the provisions into domestic law in an effective manner.

For further information, please contact:
Valery Mbaoh Nana, ICRC Bamako, tel: +223 76 99 63 75