Wednesday, 10 August 2011 15:55

SEMINAR OF THE INTERNATIONAL RED CROSS COMMITTEE IN MINSK

 

The 3rd regional seminar for CIS countries on implementation of international humanitarian law was held in Minsk on November 10-12, 2010 in the premises of the National Library of RB.

 

 

 

 

The seminar was organized by the International Red Cross Committee (IRCC) with the assistance of the Ministry of Justice of RB. To the state reception on the occasion of the Seminar opening and presentation of “IRCC Guidance on implementation of international humanitarian law at national level” were invited Chairman of the Department of the ICR in the Republic of Belarus Bazyleva N.A. and Chairman of the Belarusian Roerich Foundation Vozmitel I.G.

The IRCC was represented by the Regional Legal Adviser in Eastern Europe and Central Asia Ms. Maria Teresa Doutly. At the International Scientific and Social Conference “75 Years of the Roerich Pact” that was held in the International Centre of the Roerichs in October 2010 Ms. Doutly delivered a report “Legal basis for the protection of cultural values in the event of armed conflict”. One of the issues of the “Guidance” that she presented was also dedicated to protection of cultural values, namely to Hague “International Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict” of 1954 and thе Second Protocol of 1999 to the Convention.

The third day of the seminar heard the report on implementation of norms of the Second Protocol of 1999 at national level by Mr. Carim Peltonen, Chairman of the Committee for protection of cultural values in the event of armed conflict. He said in his report that this document creates a new category of protection – strengthened defense of cultural property that presents the biggest value for mankind and cannot be used for military purposes. It is also planned to found two new institutions: Committee for protection of cultural values in the event of armed conflict (headed by Mr. Peltonen) and Foundation for protection cultural values in the event of armed conflict.

The report initiated a lot of questions. During the discussion in sections it became clear that not all the participating countries associated with the Hague Convention, not all of them have specialized laws. Information is given to armed forces and recorded in field manuals and guides. Compiling of cultural values lists, inclusion in laws of the States the provisions of the Convention and designation of objects with emblems is being carried out. There exist problems with financing. Some sates need information assistance, in others the analyses of activities is required. In order to realize these meetings, round tables, exchange of experience are needed.

The seminar performed its task. The participants got the necessary information, exchanged their experience and discussed the plans for the future.