International Response to Humanitarian Crisis

Paola Gaeta

MINT091 | Autumn | 6 ECTS

Humanitarian emergencies have currently reached unprecedented dimensions. The purpose of this course is to enable students to become familiar with the main international norms and instruments relevant to humanitarian action, by analysing the international legal frameworks that shape the international response to those emergencies. The course will be divided in three parts. The first part of the course will discuss the international legal obligations that are incumbent on national authorities in situations of  humanitarian disasters, civil unrest or in times of armed conflict to to enhance humanitarian access and to ensure the wellbeing of affected populations. The second part of the course will examine the specific protection mandate of  humanitarian organizations  such as the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). The final part will be devoted to the analysis of the role that coercive diplomacy and recourse to military force can play in facilitating humanitarian access, by discussing the concept of Responsibility to Protect and the current legal framework on the international and regional use of military forces in humanitarian emergencies.