Displaying items by tag: Protection

Even in the face of extreme poverty, conflict and crisis, civilians often play a critical role in responding to threats to their safety and dignity and violations of their fundamental rights. The focus on legal duty-bearers in the academic discourse on protection does not go far enough to acknowledge the part that non-formal actors, including affected communities themselves, play in protection. This is particularly true in contexts where effective government presence is lacking or non-existent. This article pulls together knowledge from Church World Service (CWS) programmes implemented in East Africa and Afghanistan to illustrate how community-based empowerment approaches can reduce…
Many agencies still find it difficult to effectively integrate protection into humanitarian sector programmes. Although protection is a cross-cutting issue in the Sphere handbook and agency staff are trained in the application of Sphere standards, protection issues are frequently not systematically identified and addressed in humanitarian response. Recognising this gap, World Vision Australia undertook a six-month research exercise to code existing standards and indicators relating to protection, leading to the development and publication of Minimum Agency Standards for Incorporating Protection into Humanitarian Response.[1] This tool is intended to help operational agencies to incorporate protection into their humanitarian programming and advocacy.…
Humanitarian protection is widely regarded as encompassing respect for the fundamental rights of people, for their safety, dignity and integrity as human beings.[1] Protection actors are encouraged to work directly with affected individuals and populations, and to strengthen the capacity of communities to protect themselves.[2] But to what extent do agencies and populations at risk share similar definitions, ideas and priorities regarding protection? In 2008 and 2009, Oxfam Timor-Leste, Caritas Australia (Timor-Leste), CARE Timor-Leste and World Vision Kenya conducted 34 focus group discussions in three locations in Timor-Leste and three locations in Kenya. The discussions were one component of baseline…
The South-East Asian nation of Timor-Leste declared independence on 20 May 2002 after three years of UN administration following the end of the Indonesian occupation in 1999. Four years later, in 2006, serious civil conflict broke out when sections of the Timorese army (known as ‘Petitioners’) protested against alleged discrimination by officers from areas of eastern Timor-Leste. Subsequent clashes, which also included the police and wider society, resulted in the displacement of approximately 150,000 people. The Cluster System was officially introduced in Timor-Leste in March 2009 to better coordinate the response to the conflict and also to plan for potential…
Since 1999, UN peacekeeping missions have been explicitly mandated to protect civilians under threat. On the ground, however, there remains a significant degree of confusion amongst soldiers and civilians working within peacekeeping missions about what exactly this civilian protection mandate entails. This article provides a brief summary of Oxfam’s experiences of engaging with peacekeeping missions around their protection responsibilities in Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Chad and Somalia. It argues that UN bodies and Member States must provide peacekeeping missions with better leadership and guidance to implement their protection mandate.   Civilian protection within UN peacekeeping Recent years…
In May 2009, the government of Pakistan launched an offensive against the Taliban in Swat, prompting the world’s fastest and largest displacement crisis in over a decade. Over 2.6 million people were uprooted in as little as three weeks. From the outset, it was clear that protection concerns would play a considerable role. Areas of conflict were inaccessible, most of those fleeing were women and children and the vast majority of the displaced stayed in informal camps or host community settings, rather than the purpose-built formal camps. Many IDPs, therefore, remained hidden, unable to access services, unaware of their rights…
People living in conflict-affected areas of Karen State in south-eastern Burma rely on courageous and ingenious, but also often harmful, self-protection strategies. Protection stemming from international norms and agents is largely absent for this population. The ‘Local to Global Protection’ (L2GP) project explores how people living in areas affected by natural disaster and armed conflict understand ‘protection’ – what they value, how they go about protecting themselves, their families and their communities and how they view the roles of other stakeholders. Since the Rwanda crisis in 1994, protection has increasingly been debated by aid agencies, which have sought to incorporate…
The special feature of this issue of Humanitarian Exchange focuses on humanitarian protection. After little more than a decade, ‘protection’ has grown from a collection of activities executed by a handful of specialised agencies to being a key component of humanitarian action. Yet protection issues are still not systematically identified and addressed in humanitarian response and advocacy. In his thought provoking lead article, Marc Dubois argues that humanitarian actors must develop a more critical perspective on humanitarian protection, including an honest acknowledgement of their limitations. Related issues are examined in articles focused on the civilian protection mandates of peacekeeping missions…
  في منتصف عام 2002، وعقب حملة من الهجمات الانتحارية شنها مسلحون فلسطينيون، أقرت الحكومة الإسرائيلية بناء جدار عازل لمنع الانتحاريين من دخول البلاد.[1] وبعد مضي خمس سنوات، تم الانتهاء من بناء حوالي 58.3 في المائة من الجدار، ويجري حالياً إنشاء 10.2 في المائة أخرى، فيما يجري التخطيط لإنشاء 31.5 في المائة. ويتكون الجدار من أسيجة، وخنادق، وأسلاك شائكة، ومسارات رملية ممهدة، ونظام مراقبة إلكتروني، وطرق للدوريات، ومنطقة عازلة. ويتألف حوالي 30 كلم من هذا الجدار من ألواح خرسانية بارتفاع 8-9 أمتار ومتصلة فيما بينها لتشكل سوراً، ولا سيما في المناطق الحضرية مثل القدس وبيت لحم. وعند اكتماله، سيمر حوالي…
  إن المرة الأخيرة التي تناولنا فيها الأزمة الإنسانية في الأراضي الفلسطينية المحتلة كانت في نوفمبر/تشرين الثاني 2004- أي قبل حوالي خمس سنوات. ومنذ ذلك الحين والوضع الإنساني يتدهور بإطراد. فقد أسفر استمرار أعمال العنف عن مقتل وإصابة وتهجير الكثيرين وعن تدمير واسع النطاق للمنازل والبنى التحتية. كما أدى التوسع في بناء الجدار المثير للجدل و“نظام الإغلاق” المرتبط به إلى تقويض سبل العيش وتفاقم الفقر وتدهور خطير في مستوى الخدمات الأساسية. وقد ساهمت هذه المعوقات في رفع معدل البطالة إلى أكثر من 40 في المائة وما يرتبط بذلك من تدني تقدير الذات والاكتئاب والعنف الأسري. وكما يوضح مقال النظرة العامة…

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