April 7 marks World Health Day and this year the World Health Organisation is using the day to draw attention to global mental health concerns, including the devastating impact of the Syria conflict. Such an important moment should facilitate greater reflection by the humanitarian community in terms of preventing, limiting and responding to mental health impacts during war, and this conversation should also include legal assessments and applications.
Over the last few decades there has been a concerted movement to promote a gender perspective within the international humanitarian law (IHL). Such a movement has gained considerable momentum and importance as a central tool addressing gendered vulnerabilities in conflict.
As the frequency and brutality of conflict increases around the world, a number of voices are questioning the relevance of international humanitarian law (IHL), as well as its chief guardian the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). While many criticisms are undoubtedly warranted, some are unfair, inaccurate or misplaced; as such, they warrant a much more careful consideration.
The difficulty in assessing trends of (dis)respect and respect