Practice Relating to Rule 132. Return of Displaced Persons
In 2010, in a statement at the Tenth Annual Regional Seminar on the Implementation of International Humanitarian Law in Pretoria, South Africa’s Deputy Minister of the Department of International Relations and Cooperation stated:
… Faced with the reality that the African continent has one of the largest number of IDPs [internally displaced persons], estimated at about 11.8 million from 21 countries, Heads of State and Government of Member States of the AU [African Union] met during November 2009 to adopt the Convention for the Protection and Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons in Africa (the Kampala Convention), in an effort to address these challenges, the first continent to have done so. …
… We should also ensure the creation of conditions for the return of displaced persons to their home countries, whilst recognising their fundamental right to resettlement.
In 2012, in a statement on the Palestinian/Israeli situation, South Africa’s Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation stated: “We continue to encourage a just solution with respect to the right of return of Palestinian refugees.”
In 2013, in a statement before the UN Security Council during an open debate on the protection of civilians in armed conflict on behalf of the members of the Human Security Network and on behalf of South Africa as an observer, the deputy permanent representative of Chile stated:
… We should always keep in mind that one of the most disastrous impacts of conflict is on refugees and internally displaced persons and, therefore, we need to tackle this challenge, by putting forward measures that will facilitate voluntary return, repatriation and reintegration.