3 The humanitarian action of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement is specifically based on seven Fundamental Principles: humanity, impartiality, neutrality, independence, voluntary service, unity, and universality. References in this article to the ‘fundamental (humanitarian) principles’ are based on this definition. For further information, see: http://www.icrc.org/eng/resources/documents/misc/fundamental-principles-commentary-010179.htm (last visited December 2011).
4 Forsythe, David P., ‘The ICRC: a unique humanitarian protagonist’, in International Review of the Red Cross, Vol. 89, No. 865, March 2007, p. 69.
5 Rieff, David, A Bed for the Night: Humanitarianism in Crisis, Simon & Schuster, New York, 2002; Mills, Kurt, ‘Neo-humanitarianism: the role of international norms and organizations in contemporary conflict’, in Global Governance: A Review of Multilateralism and International Organizations, Vol. 11, No. 2, p. 161.
6 As noted by John Borton in Future of the Humanitarian System: Impacts of Internal Changes, Feinstein Center, November 2009, available at: http://www.humanitarianfutures.org/sites/default/files/internal.pdf (last visited December 2011), a striking feature of the ‘humanitarian system’ is the lack of clarity about what precisely it consists of and where the boundaries lie. There is no universal definition: some writers preface the term with ‘international’ to distinguish it from national and local elements within affected countries, while some reject the use of the word ‘system’ altogether, on the grounds that it implies actors oriented towards common goals. Borton himself uses a working definition of the ‘multiplicity of international, national and locally-based organizations deploying financial, material and human resources to provided assistance and protection to those affected by conflict and natural disasters with the objective of saving lives, reducing suffering and aiding recovery’ (p. 5).
9 See ICRC News Release 11/49, ‘Somalia: malnutrition brings children to the brink of death’, 13 July 2011, http://www.icrc.org/eng/resources/documents/news-release/2011/somalia-news-2011-07-13.htm (last visited 10 December 2011); Chris Niles, ‘Amidst the region's worst drought in decades, Somali refugees crowd camps in Kenya’, UNICEF, 11 July 2011, available at: http://www.unicef.org/infobycountry/kenya_59174.html (last visited December 2011); UNHCR, ‘Crisis in Horn of Africa: a worsening humanitarian situation’, available at: http://www.unhcr.org/pages/4e1ff4b06.html (last visited March 2012).
14 See ICRC, above note 11, pp. 48–52.
16 See ICRC, above note 11, pp. 36–40.
17 Huntington, Samuel P., ‘Clash of Civilizations?’, in Foreign Affairs, Vol. 72, No. 3, Summer 1993, pp. 22–49.
18 Recent research indicates the overall decline in host government respect for humanitarian principles. See Active Learning Network for Accountability and Performance in Humanitarian Action (ALNAP), The State of the Humanitarian System, 2010, available at: http://www.alnap.org/pool/files/alnap-sohs-final.pdf (last visited 10 December 2011).
20 Médecins sans Frontières argues that the humanitarian community in Afghanistan has broadly lost the acceptance of the population that is necessary for the provision of humanitarian aid. See Michael Hofman and Sophie Delauney, ‘Special report – Afghanistan: a return to humanitarian action’, March 2010, available at: http://www.doctorswithoutborders.org/publications/article.cfm?id=4311&cat=special-report (last visited 10 December 2011).
21 Terry, Fiona, ‘The International Committee of the Red Cross in Afghanistan: reasserting the neutrality of humanitarian action’, in International Review of the Red Cross, Vol. 93, No. 881, March 2011, pp. 173–188.
22 For a discussion on the Libyan situation and the evolution of the concept ‘Responsibility to Protect’, see Bruno Pommier, ‘The use of force to protect civilians and humanitarian action. The case of Libya and beyond’, in this edition.
23 For the ‘Good Humanitarian Donorship’ initiative, see: http://www.goodhumanitariandonorship.org/ (last visited 12 December 2011). See also Andrea Binder and Claudia Meier, ‘Opportunity knocks: why non-Western donors enter humanitarianism and how to make the best of it’, in this issue.
24 See Walker, Peter and Pepper, Kevin, ‘The state of humanitarian funding’, in Forced Migration Review, No. 29, 2007, pp. 33–35.
29 For an in-depth discussion of this topic, see Patrick Meier, ‘New information technologies and their impact on the humanitarian sector’, in this issue.
31 The Humanitarian Response Review, initiated by the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator and published in August 2005, included key recommendations aimed at reforming the collaborative response: namely strengthening the role and functions of Humanitarian Coordinators and improving the selection process, and the assignment of clear responsibilities to lead organizations at sector level. One outcome was the development of the ‘cluster system’; new financing mechanisms were another. See Humanitarian Response Review, available at: http://oneresponse.info/Coordination/ClusterApproach/Documents/Humanitarian%20Response%20Review.pdf (last visited 12 December 2011).
33 This question is also discussed in the joint interview by EU Commissioner Kristalina Georgieva and the ICRC's President, Dr. Jakob Kellenberger, ‘What are the future challenges for humanitarian action?’, in this issue.
36 The Sphere Project: Humanitarian Charter and Minimum Standards in Disaster Response (launched in 1997 by a group of humanitarian NGOs and the Red Cross/Red Crescent Movement), http://www.sphereproject.org/.
41 See F. Terry, above note 21, p. 7.
43 See, for example, ‘Untangling early recovery’, Policy Brief No. 38, Humanitarian Policy Group/Overseas Development Institute, October 2009, available at: http://www.odi.org.uk/resources/docs/5309.pdf (last visited December 2011).
44 Harroff-Tavel, Marion, ‘Do wars ever end? The work of the International Committee of the Red Cross when the guns fall silent’, in International Review of the Red Cross, Vol. 85, No. 851, September 2003, pp. 465–496.
45 Duffield, Mark R., Global Governance and the New Wars: The Merging of Development and Security, Zed Books, London, 2001.