Our Work

Protection: Resources


Stock-Take on the IASC Protection Policy and the Centrality of Protection

On October 14-15, 2018, the co-chairs of the Centrality of Protection Task Team, InterAction and OCHA, supported the Global Protection Cluster (GPC) to convene a workshop to take stock of implementation of the IASC Policy on Protection in Humanitarian Action (2016) and the IASC Principals Statement on the Centrality of Protection in Humanitarian Action (2013). Complementing a global survey and several peer exchanges, the workshop sought to review diverse experiences and observations on the degree to which protection is central to humanitarian action, identify future actions to better achieve protection outcomes, and support effective implementation of the Protection Policy.  The meeting took place in Amman, Jordan, and brought together around 45 practitioners from diverse agencies and country contexts, as well as a mix of policy and programming focus. Participants represented protection experts but also shelter, health, food security, and general humanitarian managers. Several humanitarian coordinators (HCs) also attended various sessions. Highlights from the pre-meeting survey and peer exchanges can be seen in the IASC Protection Policy: Field Practices Note.

The Protection of Civilians in U.S. Partnered Operations  

InterAction, along with the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) and the Center for Civilians in Conflict (CIVIC), produced a report on the practical experiences of policymakers and practitioners in security and humanitarian fields in positively shaping the conduct of armed forces partnering with U.S. forces. Their combined experience—supported by the available research—suggests that it is possible, with the right conditions for success, to affect the conduct of both state and non-state armed actors to minimize harm to civilians. This report outlines considerations and recommendations for policymakers, military actors, and humanitarian professionals, all of whom play a role in encouraging improved policies and practices of armed forces with whom the United States partners.

Moving Forward Together, Leaving No One Behind: From Stigmatization to Social Cohesion in Post-Conflict Iraq

InterAction conducted field research in Erbil, Mosul, Kirkuk, Baghdad, Anbar, and Karbala, Iraq from July 23 - August 9, 2018 to assess the most pressing protection issues and how they can be addressed by a whole-of-system response in line with the Inter-Agency Standing Committee’s (IASC) Protection Policy. The recommendations outlined in this report were developed based on the understanding that a humanitarian protection response should analyze the current context before developing outcome-oriented approaches and gather the various actors needed to achieve collective outcomes and reduce risks faced by affected populations.

InterAction Mission Report - Myanmar: June 2018 

InterAction’s Program Manager for Protection, Ramon Broers, visited Myanmar for a short mission from June 2-6, 2018. The purpose of the trip was to follow-up on the protection findings and recommendations from the previous InterAction mission conducted last year, from February 26 to March 9, 2017, which examined opportunities to strengthen the ways of working outlined in the IASC Protection Policy to address protection concerns.

Protection of Civilians in Mosul: Identifying Lessons for Contingency Planning 

In order to inform civilian protection efforts in future operations in Iraq and other countries, this closed-door, invitation-only roundtable discussion in June 2017 brought together Iraqi embassy officials, U.S. policymakers and military officials, and humanitarian actors with experience in Iraq to critically reflect on the measures taken to address protection concerns during the Mosul military operations and subsequent displacement. Discussions explored the conduct of hostilities; planning for displacement; coordination between military, government, and humanitarian actors; and the implications of harm to civilians for stabilization and recovery. This report highlights key lessons identified and offers reflections on contingency planning in complex urban operations and further measures needed to reduce civilian harm.

Implementing the IASC Protection Policy: Key Resources

The Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) Protection Policy was endorsed by the IASC Principals in October 2016. The Policy outlines the overarching framework for how humanitarian actors can fulfill their responsibility to place protection at the center of all aspects of humanitarian action, spelling out core principles, approaches, roles, and responsibilities within and beyond the humanitarian system. This summary outlines the underpinning concepts within the Policy, the NGO role in its implementation, and provides an overview of key sections of the Policy.

Field Mission Report - Strengthening humanitarian action to address protection issues in Rahkine, Myanmar: Human trafficking, a case example

Building off of InterAction’s previous mission to Myanmar, which focused on NGO roles in relation to the overall protection leadership, coordination, and strategies within the country, the second mission, conducted jointly with the Protection Information Management (PIM) initiative (co-facilitated by the Danish Refugee Council (DRC) and UNHCR) examined the methods and approaches actors use to achieve protection outcomes, using human trafficking in Rakhine state as a case example.

When War Moves to Cities: Protection of Civilians in Urban Areas

When warfare takes place in cities, civilians experience direct and indirect harm, from physical violence and injury to disruption of vital services and destruction of infrastructure. In this report, released in collaboration with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), InterAction highlights the experiences of civilians caught in urban conflict and good practices for mitigating immediate and long-term harm caused by parties to conflict.

Famine-Affected Countries: Gender-Based Violence and Protection Concerns

As of June 2017, famine threatens an estimated 20 million people across northern Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, and Yemen. In these countries, the dangerous convergence of long-standing and recent resurgences of conflict, poor governance, limited freedom of movement, collapsing economies, rising food prices, and drought has resulted in staggering levels of food insecurity and shortages of clean water. Women and girls are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of these crises, which exacerbate the already high levels of gender inequality and gender-based violence (GBV) seen in each of these country contexts. This paper highlights the context-specific concerns of GBV in each country affected by famine.

Field Mission Report: Findings and Recommendations from InterAction Protection Mission to Myanmar (Feb./Mar. 2017) 

InterAction staff visited Myanmar in February/March 2017, to explore NGO roles in relation to overall protection leadership, coordination, and strategies.

Civilians Under Fire: Restore Respect for International Humanitarian Law

The scale and severity of human suffering in current armed conflicts represent a distressing race to the bottom in disregard for the basic rules regulating armed conflict. Civilian deaths and injuries resulting from explosive weapons have increased by 52% over the last four years. The world is currently witnessing the greatest population displacement since World War II. This is not merely the tragic, inevitable consequence of conflict, and it cannot be excused by the fog of war. Much of this loss of life and human suffering is avoidable. This is precisely what international humanitarian law, also known as the law of armed conflict, is for – to limit the effects of armed conflict.

Trapped in Conflict: Evaluating Scenarios to Assist At-Risk Civilians

In response to the increased risks facing civilian populations in several conflict contexts, InterAction and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), facilitated a roundtable discussion to evaluate scenarios including evacuations, safe havens, and no-fly zones. Roundtable participants included policymakers at the State Department, Department of Defense, senior congressional staff, policy advisors at humanitarian agencies, prominent researchers and human rights advocates, UN personnel, and various elements of the U.S. Armed Services. To ground the discussion, the roundtable focused on recent and current experiences in several contexts, including the Central African Republic, South Sudan, Iraq, Libya, and Syria. Participants considered political, legal, and operational questions relevant to proposed scenarios to assist at-risk civilians, resulting in common themes necessary to consider before intervening in today’s complex crises.