Egeland: Ensure Better Protection for Civilians in Armed Conflict

“There are too many times when we still do not come to the defence of civilian populations in need,” Jan Egeland, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, said at the outset of the [Security] Council’s open debate. “When our response is weak, we appear to wash our hands of our humanitarian responsibilities to protect lives. The world is a safer place for most of us, but it is still a death trap for too many defenceless civilians, men, women and children.”

In Iraq, Sudan, Uganda, Somalia, Afghanistan and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, he said, civilians continued to bear the full brunt of armed conflict and terror. Despite all efforts, women were still raped and violated as a matter of course; children were still forcibly recruited; and defenceless civilians continued to be killed – in violation of the most basic principles enshrined in centuries of international lawmaking.” [More]