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Protecting Civilians in WarThe ICRC, UNHCR, and Their Limitations in Internal Armed Conflicts$
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Miriam Bradley

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198716389

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198716389.001.0001

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Objectives and Strategies of Protection

Objectives and Strategies of Protection

(p.101) 4 Objectives and Strategies of Protection
Protecting Civilians in War

Miriam Bradley

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the specific objectives and strategies pursued by these two organizations in their protection work. Echoing their respective objectives for other issue-areas within their mandates, the ICRC aims mainly to reduce the threats posed by armed actors to civilians and secondarily to reduce the vulnerability of civilians to those threats, while UNHCR tends to focus on changing policy at least one step removed from the violence and armed actors that are the essence of the protection problem. For the ICRC, even activities not labelled as part of protection must be linked to conflict and violence. By contrast, UNHCR is not primarily concerned with the impact of violence or conflict per se, but with the impact of displacement. UNHCR engages in IDP protection because IDPs suffer from conflict, violence, and physical insecurity, but the institutional response often focuses on high-level legal and public policy changes rather than physical protection.

Keywords:   Objective, physical insecurity, strategy, threat, violence, vulnerability

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