Photo: Johannes Ode
Protecting civilians requires understanding how people are harmed by the actions of military actors. PAX researches the immediate and long-term impacts of the use of force, and advocates for measures to better mitigate and respond to civilian harm.
Understanding the direct and reverberating effects of conflict
Civilian harm mitigation is a legal, moral and military-strategic imperative. PAX enables states, armed forces and others to better monitor and respond to civilian harm. In addition to immediate casualties, the damage to physical infrastructure, basic services and mental health reflects the true impacts of conflict.
PAX’s approach includes:
– Research into the global effects of conflict
– Advocacy linking civilian and academic experts with policymakers and military
– Training military actors to prevent or mitigate civilian harm
For more information, see PAX’s Protection in Practice project.
Latest publications about this topic
report 10 June 2021
On Civilian Harm
In ‘On Civilian Harm,’ we explore the ways in which civilians are negatively affected by violent conflict, offer tools and language to discuss the phenomenon, make practical recommendations for civilian harm mitigation and raise questions for further debate.
Toward a shared understanding of civilian harm
Case 1 "On Civilian Harm": Siege tactics
Case 2 “On Civilian Harm”: Oil fires
Case 3 "On Civilian Harm": Sexual violence
Case 4 "On Civilian Harm": Essential infrastructure
Case 5 “On Civilian Harm: Chemical weapons
Case 6 “On Civilian Harm: Explosive remnants of war
Case 7 “On Civilian Harm”: Indirect fire
Case 8 “On Civilian Harm”: Genocide
Case 9 “On Civilian Harm”: Airstrike
Case 10 “On Civilian Harm”: Forced displacement
Case 11 “On Civilian Harm”: Suicide bombing
Case 12 “On Civilian Harm”: Weaponizing drinking water
Satellite Images by Azmat Khan (NYT)
Understanding how civilians are harmed by violent conflict is vital for protection. As such, we study the long-term effects of civilian harm in Hawija, Iraq.
In partnership with Al-Ghad League for Woman and Child Care and Utrecht University, we study the long-term effects of civilian harm from the June 2015 Dutch airstrike in Hawija.
On Civilian Harm
How are civilians negatively affected by conflict? And how can we reduce both immediate and long-term suffering? We address these questions in our book ‘On Civilian Harm’.
We tend to discuss the impact of conflict on civilians in terms of the wounded and the dead. Yet, civilians experience many other negative effects from violence. ‘On civilian harm’ offers a realistic representation of these experiences.