Practice Relating to Rule 55. Access for Humanitarian Relief to Civilians in Need
Sweden’s IHL Manual (1991) states:
According to Article 70 of Additional Protocol I to the 1949 Geneva Conventions, relief actions of a humanitarian and impartial character, which do not subject one party or the other to discriminatory treatment, shall “be undertaken, subject to the agreement of the Parties concerned in such relief actions”. It is also stated that such offers of relief “shall not be regarded as interference in the armed conflict or as unfriendly acts”. No objections can be raised to such relief actions from the point of view of neutrality law.
In 2007, in a speech given at the EU Africa Summit, the Prime Minister of Sweden stated: “No quest for stability can justify the denial of humanitarian access … Human suffering and violations against civilians must come to an end in places like Darfur and Somalia.”