Malaysia: Asia hosts military operations workshop for first time, 8th October 2012
Kuala Lumpur/Geneva (ICRC) — Over the coming days, a high-level workshop on rules governing military operations will be taking place in Asia for the very first time.
Seventy senior military officers from 70 nations will take part in the Senior Workshop on International Rules Governing Military Operations (SWIRMO) 2012, which will take place in Kuala Lumpur from 7 to 13 October. The event is jointly hosted by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the Malaysian Armed Forces.
“The workshop will provide an opportunity to share experiences and best practices in order to improve compliance with the law governing military operations,” said ICRC Vice-President Christine Beerli, who will participate in the opening of the event. She added that the workshop’s leaders were themselves senior officers with extensive experience both in teaching the law and in putting it into operational practice. Now in its sixth year, SWIRMO will focus on the inclusion of international law in the decision-making process in combat and law-enforcement operations.
Dato’ Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, Malaysia’s defence minister, said that the Malaysian government has always supported the development of international humanitarian law and ratified its various treaties. He commended the ICRC for organizing this year’s edition of SWIRMO in Malaysia, calling the decision to do so “apt and timely,” and said he was certain the workshop would be extremely engaging and constructive.
Every year, the ICRC joins the armed forces of a selected country in hosting SWIRMO. Switzerland was the joint host in 2007, 2008 and 2010, and France in 2009. Last year, the first time the workshop had been held outside Europe, South Africa co-hosted SWIRMO 2011