Practice Relating to Rule 131. Treatment of Displaced Persons
Section A. Provision of basic necessities
Switzerland’s Basic Military Manual (1987) provides that the parties “shall ensure that proper accommodation is provided to receive the transferred persons and that displacements are effected in satisfactory conditions of hygiene, health … and nutrition”.
In 2013, in a statement before the UN Human Rights Council during an interactive dialogue with the UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights of internally displaced persons, the representative of Switzerland stated:
During the preparation of the report, more than 4.25 million people have been internally displaced in Syria as a result of the hostilities, and their number has even more increased since then, following the intensification of the violence.
This makes access to victims of the war, including internally displaced persons, more and more difficult and the humanitarian actors present face great risks. … In view of the grave circumstances, Switzerland calls on all parties to the conflict to respect the principles of international humanitarian law and to facilitate thus access to vulnerable persons. It invites, in particular, the Syrian Government, in the framework of its primordial obligation to protect displaced persons and to respond to their needs, to facilitate humanitarian aid intended for all vulnerable persons, without discrimination and in line with international humanitarian law as well as the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement.