Since September 2002 life in Côte d’Ivoire has been punctuated by serious incidents of violence. Many civilians have already died as a result of the warring parties’ ignorance of the basic rules of international humanitarian law.
The ICRC delegation in Abidjan, in cooperation with the Red Cross Society of Côte d’Ivoire, is endeavouring to spread knowledge of the basic principles of humanitarian law. In particular, it is explaining to arms bearers what their obligations are in the conduct of hostilities: to spare civilians and their property, to treat prisoners with humanity, etc.
As part of this effort, the ICRC produced a 2005 calendar drawing attention to the basic rules of the Geneva Conventions and their Additional Protocols. The artists providing illustrations for these rules are not well known among the general public – and for a very good reason, since they are street children. Taken in hand by the Ivorian Red Cross, they placed their talent in the service of humanity and produced a series of “naive” pictures that forcefully express their vision of a world of greater justice.