IRRC No. 861

Humanitarian organizations and international criminal tribunals, or trying to square the circle

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The fact that international criminal tribunals have become operational has undoubtedly changed the face of the global humanitarian environment. Humanitarian organizations face a very difficult dilemma: on the one hand they cannot ignore the important role of international criminal prosecution, while on the other they are reluctant to put their operations in the field at risk by being seen to co-operate in judicial proceedings. Furthermore, a categorical refusal to co-operate could lead to their being compelled to testify.

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