From norms to action 12 September 2019 17:30 - 19:00

Seven decades of protection: the Geneva Conventions through the test of time – Expert discussion

Join the Permanent Mission of Germany to the United Nations and Other International Organizations, Geneva, and the ICRC to mark the 70th anniversary of the 1949 Geneva Conventions.

About the event

Adopted in 1949, a mere four years after the tremendous suffering of the Second World War, and at the beginning of the Cold War, the Geneva Conventions deepened the body of treaty law protecting victims of armed conflict. As we mark their 70th anniversary, it is essential to reflect collectively on the achievements of the Conventions, on the challenges that lie ahead, and on ways to continue translating these fundamental laws into genuine protection.

This event will complement the panel hosted at the Humanitarium on 18 September: Voices from the Field.  

On 12 September, we will embark the audience on an expert discussion on the 1949 Geneva Conventions and International Humanitarian Law (IHL), reflecting on their historical origins and the ways they are implemented in armed conflicts today. Different topics will be addressed, such as the context of the adoption of the 1949 Geneva Conventions, the innovations they introduced, and the contemporary and future challenges to and solutions for their implementation.

Dr Helen Durham, Director of International Law and Policy, ICRC, and Ambassador Michael Freiherr von Ungern-Sternberg, Permanent Representative of Germany to the UN and Other International Organizations, Geneva, will introduce the event.

In an interview-style format moderated by Helen Durham, distinguished IHL scholars will discuss how the Geneva Conventions have contributed to protect humanity in war for 70 years and why those texts, and IHL generally, are as much commitments for the future than outcomes from the past.

The event will be followed by a cocktail.

Keynote Speakers

HE Ambassador Michael Freiherr von Ungern-Sternberg, Permanent Representative of Germany to the UN and Other International Organizations, Geneva
Dr Helen Durham, Director of International Law and Policy, ICRC

Speakers

Dr Cordula Droege, Chief Legal Adviser and Head of the Legal Division, ICRC
François Bugnion, Independent consultant in international humanitarian law and humanitarian action, former member of the ICRC Assembly
Hasini Rathnamalala, Senior Lecturer in Law in the Faculty of Law, General Sir John Kotelawala Defence University, Sri Lanka

Event Recording

Not in Geneva? A recording of this event will be made available following the event. More details to follow.

Date & Time

12 September 2019 17:30 - 19:00

Venue address

Humanitarium
17 Avenue de la paix, 1202, Geneva