Practice Relating to Rule 132. Return of Displaced Persons
Section B. Measures to facilitate return and reintegration
In 2004, during a debate in the UN Security Council, the representative of Germany stated:
On the basis of the new report of the Secretary-General that we are considering today, I would like to share with the Council a catalogue of three areas for measures to move our protection agenda forward.
Thirdly, regarding refugees and internally displaced persons, in general, their situation must be improved – and not least, mechanisms for their protection. More has to be done to avoid forced military recruitment, and we have to ensure better support for the return of displaced persons. In that regard, we should examine how to better promote the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement, which the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs established in 1998. Better publicity and public awareness would give them more effect and respect. We should also advocate the implementation of those guidelines into the national legislation of States.
In 2005, in its Seventh Human Rights Policy Report, Germany’s Federal Government reported to the Bundestag (Lower House of Parliament):
With the 1998 guidelines on the handling of crises related to internally displaced persons (“Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement”) by the then Representative of the UN Secretary-General on the Human Rights of Internally Displaced Persons, Francis Deng, the international community has a practice-oriented document, which summarizes existing standards on the protection of internally displaced persons and gives further recommendations. Although these guiding principles are not a binding instrument under international law, their acceptance by States, international organizations and NGOs has continued to grow over the past years, so that now they are virtually regarded as customary international law.
In 2010, in its third and fourth periodic reports to the Committee on the Rights of the Child, Germany stated:
As [regards] projects to support children involved in armed conflict, Germany is currently promoting roughly 20 projects with the target group “child soldiers”, especially in the African Great Lakes area. The projects in Africa receiving support from the Federal Government to reintegrate child soldiers are promoted by much more than €100 million, the following being named as examples:
- The Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development is providing support via the GTZ [German Technical Cooperation] for instance with the project entitled “Promotion of Employment for Marginalised Youths” for the return and reintegration of young war refugees to their homes in Sierra Leone. The goal of the project, which is to run until 2013, is for disadvantaged juveniles and young adults to participate actively in their communities’ social, economic and political activities.