FACTSHEET – How to implement Victim assistance obligations?

Posted by: on Oct 6, 2014 | No Comments

The Victim Assistance Factsheets were developed by Handicap International as a tool to provide concise information on what victim assistance (VA) is and on how to translate it into concrete actions that have the potential to improve the quality of life of mine/ERW victims and persons with disabilities.

Home Visit with Yasar (22). Mine injury. In December 2013, Yasar was leaving along with 200 persons from his village towards a safer place. In direction of the Lebanese border, there was a wide area of landmines, without them knowing. Passing through this land, mines started exploding randomly, which caused the death of around 130 people. Among the people who died was his father and his cousin. Yasar got a brachial plexus injury which led to complete paralysis on the left hand. Due to the explosion also, he lost conscious and was transferred by his uncle to the nearest Arsal hospital. HI team identified him two months after the injury, he was with complete paralysis in his arm. Following the intervention (exercises, donations...), Yasar was able to regain his movement and approximately the full range of motion but with restricted movement due to the peripheral nerve injury. Here during a rehabilitation session with Omar Jalloul physiotherapist and Diana Abou Naccoul (PSW ? psycho social worker). // Visite à domicile après de Yasar (22 ans), victime de mine. En décembre 2013, Yasar partait avec 200 personnes de son village vers un endroit plus sûr. Ils l?ignoraient mais en direction de la frontière libanaise, il y avait une large zone de mines antipersonnel. Une fois qu?ils passèrent sur cette zone, les mines commencèrent à exploser de manière aléatoire et causèrent la mort d'environ 130 personnes. Parmi les victimes, le père et le cousin de Yasar. Yasar a été blessé au niveau du plexus brachial qui entrainé la paralysie complète de sa main gauche. A cause de l'explosion, il aussi a perdu conscience et a été transféré par son oncle à l'hôpital d'Arsal qui était le plus proche. L'équipe l'a identifié deux mois après, il était alors complètement paralysé au niveau du bras. Suite à l'intervention de HI (exercices, dons?), Yasar a pu regagner en mobilité de mouvement et quasiment toute sa motricité meme si certains gestes sont encore limités à cause de sa blessure au niveau du nerf périphérique. Ici, durant une séance de rééducation avec Omar kinésithérapeute et Diana (PSW, travailleuse psycho social).

Home Visit with Yasar (22). Mine injury.

© Frederik Buyckx / Handicap International – Liban 2014

Assistance to victims of mine/explosive remnants of war (ERW) is an obligation for States Parties to the Mine Ban Treaty (MBT) and the Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM). The Cartagena Action Plan and the Vientiane Action Plan include specific commitments that States Parties have agreed on to implement their victim assistance (VA) obligations effectively, in particular to improve the quality of life of victims. The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) provides the most comprehensive framework to address the needs & advances the rights of all persons with disabilities, including mine/ERW survivors.

Regional frameworks on disability and development are also relevant, such as the Incheon Strategy to “Make the Right Real” for Persons with Disability in Asia and the Pacific and the African Decade of Persons with Disabilities.

The factsheets provide guidance on how to ensure impact of broad efforts in all sectors that can affect Victim Assistance. They target States Parties affected by mine/ERW, States Parties in a position to provide assistance, as well as organizations of survivors and other persons with disabilities, and other civil society – and international organizations.

The package consists of 12 factsheets:

  • Six focus on a specific sector or public policy area that VA is an integral part of,
  • And the remaining six are dedicated to cross-cutting issues. With a view to promote synergies between different frameworks, each factsheet makes clear links with development sectors and issues.

This approach aims to avoid duplication of efforts and gaps between those done in the context of VA and other development efforts, to promote linkages between similar initiatives and to facilitate an efficient use of resources.

More importantly, integrating VA in wider efforts on Inclusive Development will result in more significant and sustainable improvement in the quality of life on mine/ERW victims and persons with disabilities, which is the main goal of Victim assistance.

Download the factsheets in English

Download the factsheets in French

Download the factsheets in Arabic: 123456789101112cover.