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Humanitarian aid after 9/11

The NGO ‘community’ is becoming increasingly split with regard to a certain number of fundamental questions. What position should be adopted with regard to the Coalitions in Afghanistan and Iraq and how can financial independence be ensured when certain American leaders have made declarations which appear to sideline any NGO which does not "support national policy"? How should security be managed following the attack on the UN in Baghdad and the repeated incidents of humanitarian field staff being killed? The humanitarian world has entered an era of great turbulence.

The 2003 Autumn School brought together over 80 people from nine different countries including representatives from a large number of humanitarian organisations, public authorities, the Rhône Alpes region and students. Three important issues with consequences for humanitarian practices were discussed:

  • The sometimes dangerous mix of humanitarian and military operations in new crisis contexts.
  • The increasing demand from crisis-affected populations to participate in the planning and implementation of humanitarian programmes which has called into question the methods of the ’French Doctors’
  • The way that the interaction between AIDS, economics and food security has come to challenge the postulate of resilience.

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Programme, in French