The third International Forum for Humanitarian Action held in Doha, Qatar, 19 May 2015 / CC BY-NC-ND / ICRC / Fouad Bawaba
Kuwait (ICRC) – The third International Forum for Humanitarian Action is meeting today in Doha to discuss how to make humanitarian work safer and more effective given the current challenges.
The number of people displaced or adversely affected by armed conflict and natural disasters is growing. Many more people need humanitarian aid and safe access to health care. But despite the urgent need for neutral and independent humanitarian action, deteriorating security conditions means that aid workers are struggling to access those who need help and protection. "If for any reason aid cannot get to the people who need it, the effects can be devastating. It can put many people's lives at risk," said Yahia Alibi, head of the International Committee of the Red Cross's regional delegation in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries.
The Forum is a platform for humanitarian groups and their partners in GCC countries and the region to come together to "identify and examine the biggest challenges we face, strengthen the ability of humanitarian organizations to overcome these obstacles, and set out a road map for making our work safer and more effective," added Mr Alibi.
Participants will attend discussions and workshops on the ethical and legal bases for humanitarian action; the principles of neutrality, independence and impartiality; the risks faced by aid workers in armed conflicts and how they can manage them; and how to ensure protection for civilians and health-care workers. The Forum will also host an exhibition featuring the most important new releases and publications related to humanitarian work.
Participants in the two-day Forum include representatives from a number of charities and humanitarian organizations such as National Red Crescent Societies, specialized United Nations agencies, government bodies focusing on humanitarian affairs, and research centres and think tanks. The Forum is hosted by Qatar Charity and organized jointly by the ICRC, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, the International Islamic Relief Organization in Saudi Arabia and other NGOs in the region.
For further information, please contact:
Fouad Bawaba, ICRC Kuwait, tel: +965 97 87 94 34
Dibeh Fakhr, ICRC Geneva, tel: +41 22 730 37 23 or +41 79 447 37 26