IASC Policy Paper, Protection of Internally Displaced Persons, 1999

Published Date

Protection problems are endemic to the plight of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs). They arise not only as a cause of flight, but also during displacement and in the search for durable solutions. The objective of the paper is to outline the IASC policy on the protection of internally displaced persons. The IASC emphasizes that the protection of internally displaced persons must be of concern to all humanitarian/development agencies. The policy paper identifies fourteen strategic areas to focus on in order to build a protective environment and to integrate protection features into operational response and remedial action: the need for advocacy, prevention and preparedness including the promotion of the Guiding Principles; the strengthening of national and local capacities as well as integrated training activities; the need for systematic efforts to support community-based protection and to develop protection strategies for women, children and other vulnerable groups; the search for durable solutions is a central concern in ensuring the protection of the internally displaced,; and highlights the importance of coordinated programming, monitoring and reporting.

The paper consists of four parts:

1)     Part one examines the nature and content of protection for internally displaced persons

2)     Part two sets out a number of strategic areas of activity for ensuring that protection responsibilities are discharged effectively

3)     Part three contains a short analysis of the responsibilities of action

4)     Part four develops basic principles for allocating responsibilities in specific country situations to increase the predictability of response and facilitating the work of the Humanitarian Coordinators and/or Resident Coordinators in addressing gaps