CAMP AGUINALDO, Quezon City – The Armed Forces of the Philippines pledged to reaffirm its commitment towards the promotion of the International Humanitarian Law (IHL) in a ceremony held Thursday at the AFP Commissioned Officers Club (AFPCO), here.
General Carlito Galvez Jr, the AFP Chief of Staff led the Pledge of Commitment of Military Officers and Enlisted Personnel during the official opening of the celebration of IHL Month this August.
The Department of National Defense (DND) is hosting this year’s national celebration of the IHL Month with the theme “Kaligtasan ng Mamamayan sa Panahon ng Digmaan, Sama-sama nating Pagtulungan”.
Among the guests during the ceremony were Undersecretary Severo Catura, Executive Director for Presidential Human Rights Committee; Undersecretary Ernesto Abella, Usec for Strategic Communication, Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA); Undersecretary Ricardo David Jr, Usec for Defense Policy, and Mr. Boris Kelecevic, Deputy Head of Delegation, International Committee of the Red Cross.
Activities lined up for the month include IHL Photo Exhibit on August on August 16 at Heroes Hall, General Headquarters Building in Camp Aguinaldo; IHL Fun Run, Human Formation, and Bloodletting on August 17 at the Philippine Army Grandstand in Fort Bonifacio; and conduct of series of IHL Training/Seminar on September 5 to 6 at AFPCOC.
Also part of the celebration is the ‘Toys and Books for Children of Marawi’, a donation campaign for the month of July to August.
The Philippines, as a Contracting Party to the Four Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, subscribes to the basic principle of disinterested humanitarian aid to all victims of war and armed conflict without discrimination, and accepts direct responsibility for the application of IHL when involved in an armed conflict.
Annually since 1999, the DND and the Department of Foreign Affairs co-chair a government inter-agency ad hoc committee to formulate and implement activities to commemorate the IHL Day on 12 August and the whole month of August as IHL month.