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Protecting and aiding civilians in conflict

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In conflicts around the world, the targeting of civilians and their homes, schools, hospitals, and other infrastructure has become routine. People are cut off from food, water, and lifesaving assistance. The IRC advocates with global leaders for actions that uphold the laws of war, protect civilians in conflict, hold violators to account, and allow humanitarian organizations to have greater access to people in need.

In 2020, the IRC assessed the 10 countries at greatest risk of a humanitarian crisis. These countries represent less than 6 percent of the world’s population, yet host more than half of all people identified as being in need globally, and have produced nearly three-quarters of the world’s refugees. 

“There has been little change in the countries that have been ranked highest in terms of humanitarian need compared to last year,” said Bob Kitchen, the IRC’s vice president for emergencies. “This is evidence of the drawn-out nature of many of these crises and underscores the importance of coming together to urgently resolve the root causes of humanitarian crisis.” 

Read our Watchlist 2020 report for more information, and our additional reports to learn more about our work to aid civilians in conflict. 

Available documents & links