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ECOWAS, ICRC Hold Annual Review Meeting on Implementation of IHL Treaties In West Africa
L-R Dr.Ugbe, Dr. Queguiner and Mr. Adewale

Abuja, 24th September 2019. The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) commenced the Annual Review Meeting of the Implementation of key International Humanitarian Law (IHL) treaties by Member States on 24th September 2019 in Abuja, Nigeria.

The three-day meeting will evaluate the progress made by ECOWAS Member States in the IHL Plan of Action, focus on the thematic areas of detention and sexual violence during armed conflicts and serve as a platform to exchange information, experience on challenges and best practices in their implementation efforts.

Speaking during the meeting, the ECOWAS Commission’s Director of Humanitarian and Social Affairs Dr. Sintiki Ugbe, Stated that ECOWAS’ collaboration with the ICRC in the area of IHL is important for the collective aspirations of peace and security in the region.

Group Picture of participants

“We will work with the ICRC to develop Technical Guidelines on each thematic area in the IHL Plan of Action and assist the development and dissemination of indicators to aid implementation and monitoring and evaluation”, she said.
The Deputy-Head of Delegation of the ICRC, Dr. Jean-Francois Queguiner in his remarks noted that due to the spread of armed conflict in the region which affects many vulnerable groups, there is need for greater respect for the rules and norms of IHL in West Africa.

Dr. Queguiner further stated that the meeting will help Member states prepare for their participation in the 33rd International Conference of the Red Cross in Geneva in December. ”The conference will put forward resolutions for the consideration of its participants and accept pledges from countries and organizations towards the attainment of humanitarian goals” he said.

Declaring the meeting open on behalf of Nigeria’s Permanent Representative to ECOWAS, Mr. Yemi Adewale informed participants that following the validation of the new ECOWAS International Humanitarian law plan of action last year, the objective of the meeting has shifted this year to focus on the capacity of Member States to implement the IHL Plan of Action.

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