Live Seminar 31: Reinforcing the International Legal Framework for Protecting and Assisting IDPs: The Kampala Convention
Program on Humanitarian Policy and Conflict Research (HPCR) Harvard University<br />Reinforcing the International Legal Framework for Protecting and Assisting IDPs: The Kampala Convention<br />March 22, 2011<br />Webcast live from the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at theHarvard Kennedy School of Government<br />
Reinforcing the International Legal Framework for Protecting and Assisting IDPs: The Kampala Convention<br />March 22, 2011<br />Webcast live from the Carr Center on Human Rights Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government<br /> Mr. Claude Bruderlein<br />Director<br /> Program on Humanitarian Policy and Conflict Research at Harvard University<br />Mr. Dustin Lewis<br />Program Associate<br /> Program on Humanitarian Policy and Conflict Research at Harvard University<br />
In October 2009 the African Union adopted the Convention for the Protection and Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs). Called the Kampala Convention, it will be the first legally binding regional instrument to establish obligations on the part of states and non-state actors to protect and assist IDPs. <br /> The Convention articulates obligations of the states parties in terms of preventing the conditions contributing to arbitrary displacement, protection and assistance during displacement, and durable solutions to end displacement. The Convention also addresses the role of the AU, international organizations, humanitarian agencies and armed groups in preventing and responding to internal displacement. <br /> Given the significant rate and scope of internal displacement around the world, and particularly in Africa, the Convention provides a unique framework through which to discuss a number of contemporary questions, including:<br /><ul><li>How does the Convention relate to existing humanitarian and human rights provisions? To the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement? To domestic laws and policies?
What are the aims of the Convention, and how are they operationalized? How did the drafters approach the issues of implementation and enforcement?
What is the appropriate role of the international community, humanitarian agencies, and civil society in responding to internal displacement?
What is the role of armed groups under the Convention? What does this mean for their legal accountability?
How might this Convention serve as a model for other regional responses to internal displacement?</li></li></ul><li>Panelist<br />Dr. ChalokaBeyani<br />Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of IDPs<br />Dr. KatinkaRidderbos<br />Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre<br />Mr. AllehoneMulugetaAbebe<br />University of Bern, Switzerland <br />Commentators<br />
Dr. ChalokaBeyaniwas appointed as the Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Internally Displaced Persons in September 2010 and took up the Special Rapporteur’s functions in November 2010. He has taught International Law and Human Rights at the Universities of Zambia (1984-1988), Oxford (1992-1995), and the London School of Economics (1996-2010), where he is currently a senior lecturer in International Law. He has worked and published extensively in the fields of, inter alia:<br />human rights, international criminal law, international humanitarian law, humanitarian assistance, migration, refugees and displaced persons. <br />He has acted as legal advisor, consultant and expert to a number of United Nations agencies, the European Union, the Commonwealth Secretariat and the African Union. In addition, Dr. Beyani has drafted and negotiated a number of important international instruments including the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, and the African Union Convention on Internally Displaced Persons. <br />A Zambian citizen, Dr. Beyani holds a D.Phil (Oxford), as well as an LL.M and an LL.B (University of Zambia). <br />
Dr. KatinkaRidderbosis based at the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre of the Norwegian Refugee Council in Geneva, where she manages IDMC’s project on the Kampala Convention. The project seeks to contribute to the timely ratification<br />and implementation of the Kampala Convention by working with AU institutions, governments and legislators in AU member states, and civil society organisations. In 2010, IDMC and the AU published a Guide for civil society organisations on the Kampala Convention.Prior to joining IDMC, Katinka worked at Human Rights Watch (New York / Beirut), the Refugee Law Programme (Makerere University, Kampala), the Legal Resources Centre (Cape Town), Africa and Middle East Refugee Assistance (Cairo). She holds an LLM in public international law from the University of Cambridge, and a PhD in philosophy of physics from the same university.<br />
The Kampala Convention and the Role of Civil Society<br />Raising awareness<br />Providing information about displacement<br />Monitoring implementation <br />Holding states accountable<br />KatinkaRidderbos, IDMC<br />
The Kampala Convention and the Role of Civil Society<br />The KC makes explicit provision for the role of civil society in providing assistance and protection to IDPs (arts 3, 4, 5, 9, 11, 13):<br /><ul><li>CSOs may offer their services to all those in need
States must seek assistance from CSOs when their available resources are inadequate to provide protection and assistance to IDPs
States must enable and facilitate the role of CSOs in providing protection and assistance to IDPs</li></ul>KatinkaRidderbos, IDMC<br />
AllehoneMulugetaAbebeis a diplomat and researcher on migration and displacement in Africa. He is currently finalizing his doctorate under the supervision of Professor Walter Kälin at the University of Bern, examining the emergence of a regional legal regime regulating population movement in Africa, with a specific focus on the jurisprudence of the African Commission on Human and <br />Peoples’ Rights and the recently adopted African Union Convention for the Protection and Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons. <br />His publications include: “Legal and Institutional Dimension of Protecting and Assisting Internally Displaced Persons in Africa”, Journal of Refugee Studies (2009); “Displacement during Armed Conflicts in the Light of the Case Law of the Eritrea Ethiopia Claims Commission”, Leiden Journal of International Law (2009); “Special Rapporteurs as Law Makers: the Development and Evolution of the Normative Framework for Protecting and Assisting Internally Displaced Persons”, The International Journal of Human Rights (2011); and “The African Union Convention for the Protection and Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons”, Refugee Survey Quarterly (2010).<br />
The Kampala Convention: The role of the African Union and sub-regional mechanisms in the transformation and implementation of international norms <br />The historically rich tradition of a regional approach to human displacement in Africa has played a key role to the success of the elaboration of the Kampala Convention. The treaty reinforces the role of this regional approachincluding in standard setting. Both the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child and the Protocol on the Rights of Women in Africa already incorporate key norms relevant to internal displacement. The transformation of the OAU into the AU provided a new momentum as newer regional treaties such as AU’s Constructive Act and the Protocol on the establishment of the Peace and Security Council of the African Union provided legal recognition to problem of internal displacement and protection of displaced civilians affected. The jurisprudence of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR) and the mandate of its rapporteur were also important. The Great Lakes Protocols were also important regional developments which reinforced the value of the Convention. <br />The Convention not only transforms the Guiding Principles into ‘hard laws’, but also contextualize them into African situations while taking into account recent developments both at the international and regional levels. It is innovative both in its approach and its contents.By focusing on the framework of the responsibility and obligation of the state, it seeks to complement the Guiding Principles. It incorporates several key provisions dealing with the problem of displacement in the context of contemporary challenges such as natural disaster, climate change and development projects. It also deals with Africa’s challenges such as the protection of pastoralist groups and people who are displaced as a result of harmful traditional practices.<br />AllehoneMulugetaAbebe<br />
The Kampala Convention: The role of the African Union and sub-regional mechanisms in the transformation and implementation of international norms <br />Partnerships between the African Union and a number of institutions (the UN Special Rapporteur, United Nations organizations, international organizations and civil society groups) have been built during the elaboration of the Guiding Principles. These organizations not only assisted the process but directly participated in the elaboration of the Convention. The Convention also recognizes the responsibility of these organizations in protecting and assisting states in future monitoring of the implementation of the Convention.<br />Several attempts by the drafters to broaden the ambit of the Convention were not successful. These include specific proposals concerning (1) the role of regional intervention by the African Union to prevent internal displacement, (2) how to deal with the issue of displacement in the context poverty and lack of development ( 3) the establishment of a regional office for the protection and assistance of human right mechanism. The success of the elaboration of the Convention does not reveal any fundamental reconsideration by African states of doctrines such as sovereignty of states and non-intervention. Most of these traditional values are in fact firmly enshrined in the Convention. Several provisions of the Convention, however, indicate the evolution of their perspectives on the entitlements of civilians, the responsibility of the state and the role and mandate of regional and international organizations. <br />The effective implementation of the Convention will require measures by the state concerned and a concerted support and assistance by other actors at all levels. Measures by the state concerned are key as the primary responsibility of the state lies with the state itself. The mandate, roles and institutional capacity of (1) African Union organs 2) sub-regional organizations and peacekeeping missions, and (3) of human rights institutions at the regional, sub-regional and national levels should be strengthened. <br />AllehoneMulugetaAbebe<br />
Panelist<br />Dr. ChalokaBeyani<br />Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of IDPs<br />Dr. KatinkaRidderbos<br />Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre<br />Mr. AllehoneMulugetaAbebe<br />University of Bern, Switzerland <br />Commentators<br />
Hosts Claude BruderleinDustin Lewis ProducerElizabeth Holland Technical DirectorJames BrockmanProduction TeamChristina Blunt & Anaïde Nahikian <br />
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