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Italy intervenes at the 33th Conference of the ICRC in Geneva

“It is necessary to increase the efforts of the international community, in synergy with the International Committee of the Red Cross, the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement all the relevant actors to protect the lives of innocent civilians and the most vulnerable in conflict contexts in the world” – the Permanent Representative of Italy to the International Organizations in Geneva, Gian Lorenzo Cornado, said speaking at the 33rd International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent underway in the Swiss city.

“In the year marking the 70th anniversary of the adoption of the Geneva Conventions on international humanitarian law” – continued Cornado – “the global context presents us with new challenges that require collective action and adequate tools: prolonged crises, conflicts in urban contexts, new technological tools of war and catastrophes, linked including those linked to climate change “.

Ambassador Cornado expressed Italy’s support at the 6 resolutions on the table by the Conference, which brought together around 2000 delegates from all over the world. The Italian delegation, composed of members of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and the Deputy Director of AICS Carmenati (Italian Agency for Development Cooperation), acted in synergy with the delegates of the national Red Cross, and is actively contributing to the negotiations. In addition to the fundamental issue of minors, Italy emphasizes the importance of the full application of international humanitarian law in all new situations of conflict, the usefulness of training actions dedicated to military and civil personnel that take into account the specific needs of the most vulnerable, to the strengthening of the ability to respond to pandemics and natural disasters – also by leveraging the Italian national experience- and the need for adequate protection of health personnel, which are exposed, and increasingly often become victims, in armed conflicts.

On the occasion of the Conference, Italy presented its own solemn commitment (“pledge”) open to the accession of all Member States on the protection of children in armed conflicts. The Italian commitment is in particular directed to the prevention of violence against children, through initiatives aimed at giving continuity to education and favoring humanitarian access in conflict areas, as well as through awareness campaigns against the recruitment and use of children in armed conflicts.

In the margins of the conference, Italy supported the organization of a side-event dedicated to the protection of people with disabilities in conflicts.


The International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent constitutes the main global forum for discussion on International Humanitarian Law.

Italy has actively participated in the preparatory work of the Conference which is convened every four years, offering the opportunity to reflect on the new and complex challenges that emerge in armed conflicts, such as the proliferation of non-state armed groups and the difficulty to guarantee the safety of humanitarian workers.

Debates and events will be held during the conference and thematic resolutions will be negotiated.

Italy strongly promotes the development and application of International Humanitarian Law, with the firm conviction that its respect is an essential condition to ensure that peace, security, stability and therefore harmonious growth can return after the war of all the peoples of the world.

We consider it fundamental that the parties involved in armed conflicts respect the limits set by international law. In order to ensure justice for the victims and to have a deterrent effect, it is also essential that those responsible for violations of international humanitarian law are called to answer for their crimes, also through the action of the International Criminal Court.

Referring to the “Spirit of Solferino”, our humanitarian action is inspired by the principles of humanity, neutrality, impartiality and independence, supporting numerous initiatives aimed at guaranteeing respect for International Humanitarian Law.

Italy is part of the main international conventions on the subject and strongly promotes international humanitarian law in all international fora.