Various mechanisms and approaches for implementing international humanitarian law and protecting and assisting war victims

This article presents an overview of the mechanisms for improving the lot of people affected by armed conflict. Some are anchored in international humanitarian law, but increasingly, multiple actors contribute to implementing this law outside its original implementation framework. This may result in different approaches to ensuring compliance with international humanitarian law: judicial recourse, public pressure on parties to a conflict, or even recommendations of the use of force. Nevertheless, humanitarian action unattached to any political agenda is often the only means of improving the situation of the victims of armed conflicts.

About the author

Toni Pfanner
Former Editor-in-Chief of the International Review

Dr. Toni Pfanner was the Editor-in-Chief of the International Review of the Red Cross from the beginning of the year 2002 until the end of the year 2010.