National Committees for the implementation of international humanitarian law
The Geneva Conventions of 1949 and their Additional Protocols of 1977 are the principal treaties governing aid to and protection of the victims of armed conflict. In order to secure the guarantees provided by these instruments, it is essential that the States implement their provisions to the fullest possible extent. Implementation requires the States to adopt a number of internal laws and regulations. They must, for example, establish rules on the punishment of violations, the use and protection of the red cross and red crescent emblems and the fundamental rights for protected persons. In addition, the States are obliged to spread knowledge of the Conventions and Protocols as widely as possible. Owing to the broad range of issues associated with these responsibilities, comprehensive implementation of the rules of international humanitarian law (IHL) requires coordination and support from all the government departments and other entities concerned.