Dr Unni Karunakara: Humanitarianism and Challenges to Humanitarian Action
Senior Fellow, Jackson Institute for Global Affairs at Yale University (05 Oct 2016)

About the Talk

We are living in times of humanitarian crises with escalating unmet needs. As needs rise, there has been a corresponding erosion of humanitarian protection. Humanitarian workers are being killed in unprecedented numbers and hospitals are no longer safe spaces for care in times of war. It is disconcerting to note that four out of five UN Security Council members have been in coalitions that have bombed hospitals in the past year.

Wars in the Middle-Eastern and other long-standing African conflicts have caused more than 60 million people to leave their homes due to a well-founded fear of persecution. As those affected by conflict seek refuge, Europe has sought to send them back to countries that are already straining at the seams. This is an abdication of global responsibility in the face of the biggest crisis of forced displacement since WW2.

The delivery of humanitarian assistance is a delicate balancing act between humanitarian principles and the practical ground realities. What are some of the challenges faced by humanitarian agencies in providing life-saving assistance to those affected by conflict? What needs to be done, and fast?


Doctor social work National University of Singapore social cause

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Dr Unni Karunakara Speaker for Oct 05
Dr Unni Karunakara
Dr Unni Karunakara
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