ALERT – 5-6 December, Regional Meeting on Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas to take place in Santiago

Posted by: on Nov 30, 2018 | No Comments

23 countries of the Latin American and Caribbean region will discuss important commitments during the Regional Meeting on Protecting Civilians from the Use of Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas, in Santiago, Chile.

Why this meeting?

Bombing and shelling in towns and cities has a devastating impact on civilians. In 2017, almost 32,000 civilians were recorded killed or injured by explosive weapons, with Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Yemen having the highest numbers of civilian deaths and injuries, and with incidents of explosive violence taking place in 59 countries. As urbanization continues, the current tendency for conflict to be fought in population centers – which puts civilians at significant immediate and longer-term risk – is unlikely to change in the near future.

Relentless bombardment of towns and cities, and the resulting humanitarian crisis, has highlighted the need for action at all levels – from the operational to the international – to better protect civilian populations from the deadly and destructive effects of explosive weapons.

The aim of the upcoming regional meeting is thus twofold: promote the exchange of knowledge on this matter and to foster the adoption of the Santiago Communique, a document which shall recognize the humanitarian harm of the use of explosive weapons in populated areas.

States, Civil Society Campaigners and International Organizations Representatives will work together to exchange their knowledge and opinions on this matter before agreeing on a broad and encompassing text.  The meeting will be an opportunity to foster regional cohesion with the ultimate aim to reach success at global level by adopting a political declaration. 

What is about to happen?

As INEW member, Humanity & Inclusion is co-organizing a Regional Meeting on Protecting Civilians from the Use of Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas in Santiago, Chile. The meeting will take place on December 5th – 6th at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Government of Chile (see program below).

During the two-days meeting participants will have the opportunity to deepen their knowledge on the issue and where we are now, the humanitarian concerns over the use of explosive weapons in populated areas, the types of explosive weapons that exist and are currently in use and on how stronger standards to protect civilians can be a good response. Moreover, on day 1 Country delegates will have the opportunity to share the views of Latin American and Caribbean countries on Protection of Civilians from the use of Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas.

Who will contribute?

38 State delegates will take part in the meeting on behalf of 26 Countries (Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Barbados, Belize, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Dominican Republic, St Kitts and Nevis, St. Vincent & the Grenadines, Uruguay, Ireland, Mozambique, Norway).

In addition, 3 representatives of UN Agencies and ICRC as well as 23 civil society campaigners from both Europe and South America will attend the regional meeting.

Agenda for Regional Meeting on EWIPA in Santiago Chile