Denial of Humanitarian Access

Humanitarian access is crucial in situations of armed conflict where civilians including children are in desperate need of assistance. Denial of humanitarian access entails blocking the free passage or timely delivery of humanitarian assistance to persons in need as well as the deliberate attacks against humanitarian workers.

Reasons of denied or hampered access

It is estimated that in today’s conflicts around the globe, 80 millions of children are denied humanitarian assistance. Access can be denied or hampered by parties to conflict for security or political reasons. In many parts of the world, humanitarian assistance is sometimes interrupted because of ongoing fighting.

Prohibition under international law

Denial of humanitarian access to civilians including children and attacks against humanitarian workers assisting children are prohibited under the 4th Geneva Convention and its Additional Protocols and may amount to a crime against humanity and a war crime. Moreover, it is a principle in customary international law.