News Archive

  ·  07 December 2006
ELECTION OF THE MEMBERS OF THE IHFFC [07/12/2006]
At the invitation of Switzerland, the depositary state of the Geneva Conventions and Additional Protocols, the fourth diplomatic meeting to elect the members of the International Humanitarian Fact-Finding Commission was held in Bern on 7 December. The sixty-eight States party to the first additional protocol of 1977 to the Geneva Convention that have agreed to recognise the competence of the Commission were entitled to participate in this election.


Fifty-eight States took part in the meeting under the chairmanship of H.E Ambassador Paul Seger from Switzerland and the vice-chairmanship of H.E Ambassador Edgar Mohs Villalta from Costa Rica. During the counting of the votes of the first ballot, the acting 2nd vice-president of the Commission, Maj.-Gen. Anthony Rogers, who did not stand for re-election, was invited by the Chairman to share with the delegations present the report of the Commission for t the last term of office (period 2002 - 2006).


After the first ballot seventeen from eighteen candidates obtained the absolute majority.
The following candidates were elected (in the alphabetical order of their state of origin):


Prof. Ghalib Djilali (Algeria)
Prof. Eric David (Belgium)
Dr. Jeanette Irigoin Barenne (Chile)
M. Reinado Botero-Bedoya (Colombia)
Prof. Michael Bothe (Germany)
Col. Charles Garraway (Great Britain)
Prof. Stelios Perrakis (Greece)
Prof. Flavia Lattanzi (Italy)
Prof. Akira Mayama (Japan)
Prof. Ian Refalo (Malta)
Prof. Elzbieta Mikos-Skuza (Poland)
Capt. Valery Knyazev (Russian Federation)
Prof. Miodrag Starcevic (Serbia)
Dr. Gisela Perren-Klingler (Switzerland)
Col. Hugo Corujo Sanseviero (Uruguay)


For the final results containing the number of votes obtained by the elected candidates, please klick here.

The newly-formed Commission was elected for a term of office of five years and will enter into function at its first annual meeting planned to take place in the course of March 2007.

  ·  24 November 2006
Elections 2006 [24/11/2006]
Switzerland, in its capacity as the depositary State of the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and of Protocol I additional of 1977, has invited the High Contracting Parties which have agreed to accept the competence of the International Humanitarian Fact-Finding Commission in accordance with Article 90 of Protocol I additional to the Geneva Conventions to a diplomatic meeting to elect the members of the Commission for the period from 2007 until 2011. The diplomatic meeting will take place on 7 December 2006 in Bern in the rooms of the Universal Postal Union.

Read the general information and the program of the diplomatic meeting. All 68 States which have recognised the competence of the Commission and are thus entitled to vote should register to the diplomatic meeting of 7 December. Please use the registration form and return it duly completed to the Secretariat of the Commission

At this diplomatic meeting, the representatives of the High Contracting Parties which have recognised the competence of the Commission will elect, by secret ballot, the fifteen members of the Commission from a list of candidates proposed by certain High Contracting Parties. See the provisional list oft the nominated candidates and the draft rules of procedure.
For more information please contact the Secretariat of the Commission:

Secretariat of the International Humanitarian Fact-Finding Commission
Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs
Directorate of International Law
Bundeshaus Nord
3003 Bern

E-mail: anne.stettler@eda.admin.ch
Fax: +41 31 325 07 67

  ·  31 October 2006
Participation of the IHFFC to the 5th Assembly of States Parties to the ICC [31/10/2006]
From 23 November to 1 December 2006, a delegation of the IHFFC will participate, in the capacity as observer, to the 5th Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute, which will take place in The Hague. The IHFFC will be represented by its President, Prof. Ghalib Djilali and its first Vice President, Prof. Elzbieta Mikos-Skuza. The IHFFC had already been present during the United Nations Diplomatic Conference on the Establishment of an International Criminal Court in Rome from 15 June to 17 July 1998.

Read the general statement of Prof. Ghalib Djilali

  ·  18 October 2006
Statement by the IHFFC at the 6th Committee of the UN General Assembly in New York [18/10/2006]
An informal meeting of the 6th Committee dedicated to the IHFFC was held, with the support of the Chairman of the 6th Committee, H.E. Mr Juan Manuel Gomez Robledo of Mexico, following the general debate in the 6th Committee on the Status of the Protocols Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 1949. The IHFFC, represented by its Vice-President, Prof. Michael Bothe and two of its members, Ambassador Juan Antonio Yañez-Barnuevo and Colonel Hugo Corujo Sanseviero, took the opportunity to present itself and answer the questions of the delegations.

Read the statement of Prof. Michael Bothe

  ·  07 September 2006
ELECTIONS 2006: INFORMATION MEETING [07/09/2006]
In view of the upcoming Diplomatic Conference of 7 December 2006 in Bern for the election of the 15 members of the International Humanitarian Fact-Finding Commission, the Swiss Permanent Mission to the UN and other international organisations in Geneva will organize an Information Meeting on Tuesday, 12 September 2006, from 15.30 - 17.15 at the International Conference Centre Geneva (CICG) in Room 5.

The Program of the Information Meeting will be as follows:

Welcome and introduction by Ambassador Jürg Sreuli, Permanent Mission of Switzerland to the United Nations office and to the other international organisations in Geneva

The President of the Commission, Dr. Ghalib Djilali, will inform about the legal basis, competence, function, profile of the members and activities of the International Humanitarian Fact-Finding Commission

The Secretary of the Commission, represented by Mrs Christine Schraner Burgener, Minister, Vice-Director of the Directorate of international law at the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, will provide all necessary Information in view of the elections of 7 December 2006 .

This meeting will be followed by an aperitif offered by the Swiss Mission in Geneva.

  ·  02 August 2006
The Republic of Montenegro recognises the competence of the IHFFC [02/08/2006]
As of 2 August 2006, the Republic of Montenegro has deposited the Instrument of Accession to the four Geneva Conventions of 1949 and the two Protocols Additional of 8 June 1977 relating to the Protection of the Victims of International and Non-International Armed Conflicts (Protocol I and II). Together with the Instrument of Accession to Protocol I, the Republic of Montenegro has as well deposited with the Swiss Federal Council the declaration relating to its recognition of the competence of the International Humanitarian Fact-Finding Commission, in accordance with Article 90 of Protocol I.

The two Protocols as well as its declaration of recognition of the IHFFC will enter into force for the Republic of Montenegro six months after the deposit of the instruments of accession, i.e. on 2 February 2007.

The Republic of Montenegro will be the 69th State to have accepted the Competence of the International Humanitarian Fact-Finding Commission.

  ·  14 May 2006
Side Event to the first session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva [14/05/2006]
The International Humanitarian Fact-Finding Commission will organize a Side-Event at the occasion of the first session of the Human Rights Council on Thursday, 22 June 2006, from 13.00 – 14.00 in the CICG in Geneva (3rd Floor, Room 5). The programme of the Side-Event will be as follows:

Professor Dr Michael Bothe, Vice-President of the Commission, will present the Report on the work of the International Humanitarian Fact-Finding Commission.

Our Guest Speaker, Professor Dr. John Dugard, Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories, will share his experiences about Fact-Finding in the context of Palestine and the Congo and comment on the Report on the work of the Commission.

  ·  03 May 2006
Promotional Mission to South East Asia [03/05/2006]
Pursuing its efforts towards universalisation of its recognition by States Parties to the Geneva Conventions (article 90, Protocol I Additional), the Commission will undertake a promotional mission to South-East Asia from 7 to 17 May 2006. The delegation of the Commission will be composed of Mrs Elzbieta Mikos-Skuza, 1st Vice-President, Mr. Marcel Dubouloz, Member and Mrs Véronique Haller from the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs for the Secretariat. The delegation has planned to visit the Kingdom of Thailand, the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, the Kingdom of Cambodia and Brunei Darussalam and to meet representatives of the governments and the national red cross or red crescent societies. In some countries also representatives of the civil society.

Meeting of the delegation of the Commission with representatives of the government of Brunei Darussalam (Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Justice and of Defense). In the middle, Prof. Elzbieta Mikos-Skuza (Poland), head of delegation of the Commission and Mr Alaihuddin Taha, Director of the Department of International Organisations at the MFA.

Mrs Elzbieta Mikos-Skuza, vice-president of the Commission with the Senior Colonel Nguyen Trong Dac from the Minstry of Defense.

The Head of the cabinet of the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Cambodia, Mrs. Sophea Eat, and the delegation of the Commission, composed, from left to right by Mr. Marcel Dubouloz, Ms. Véronique Haller and Mrs. Elzbieta Mikos-Skuza. The Ambassador of Poland in Phnom Penh, Mr. Ryszard Olszewski, accompanied (to the right) the delegation.

  ·  15 March 2006
Election of a new President and a new Vice-President [15/03/2006]
At the occasion of their annual meeting 2006 (15 March 2006), the Members of the International Humanitarian Fact-Finding Commission have elected their first Vice-President Professor Ghalib Djilali as their new President in replacement of Sir Kenneth Keith. Indeed Sir Kenneth Keith had to resign from his functions as a President and a Member of the Commission following his election as a Judge at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague.

The members have unanimously elected Professor Ghalib Djilali and look forward to a good and interesting collaboration with their new President.

The Members of the commission and the Secretariat also take this opportunity to announce that during the same annual meeting the Professor Michael Bothe has been elected as Vice-President.
The Diplomatic Conference will take place on 7 December 2006 in Bern, in the building of the Universal Postal Union Bern.

Beginning of May, the 68 High Contracting Parties which have currently recognised the Commission have been invited to submit the name of their candidate to the elections.

  ·  09 December 2005
Promotional mission by the IHFFC to New York [09/12/2005]
A delegation of the IHFFC, including Sir Kenneth Keith (President), Dr. Ghalib Djilali (1st Vice-President), Dr. Elzbieta Mikos-Skuza (2nd Vice-President) and Ambassador Juan Antonio Yañez-Barnuevo, accompanied by a member of the Secretariat, Ms Véronique Haller, have undertaken a promotional mission to New York, US.

The delegation had the opportunity to hold interesting and constructive meetings with a number of interlocutors from the United Nations (including Secretary-General Mr. Kofi Annan, Under-Secretary-General Mr. Nicolas Michel, Assistant-Secretary-General Mr. Hédi Annabi, et al.), from Permanent missions (UK president of the Security Council, high representatives of Russia, China and more) and from the academic and NGO field. The objective of the mission was to promote the existence and the field of action of the Commission as well as an exchange of views on the role of the Commission. The feedback has been very positive and the Commission looks forward to continue its work.

The United Nation Secretary - General, M. Kofi Annan, surrounded by the delegation of the Commission, composed from left to right by Véronique Haller (FDFA), Elzbieta Mikos-Skuza (Vice-President), Sir Kenneth Keith (President), Ghalib Djilali (Vice-President) and Antonio Yañes-Barnuevo (membre)
Meeting of the delegation of the Commission with representatives of the government of Brunei Darussalam (Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Justice and of Defense). In the middle, Prof. Elzbieta Mikos-Skuza (Poland), head of delegation of the Commission and Mr Alaihuddin Taha, Director of the Department of International Organisations at the MFA.

Mrs Elzbieta Mikos-Skuza, vice-president of the Commission with the Senior Colonel Nguyen Trong Dac from the Minstry of Defense.

The Head of the cabinet of the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Cambodia, Mrs. Sophea Eat, and the delegation of the Commission, composed, from left to right by Mr. Marcel Dubouloz, Ms. Véronique Haller and Mrs. Elzbieta Mikos-Skuza. The Ambassador of Poland in Phnom Penh, Mr. Ryszard Olszewski, accompanied (to the right) the delegation.

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