Note on Follow-up to the Report by Ambassador Schnyder on Military Attacks on Refugee Camps and Settlements in Southern Africa and Elsewhere
1. On 28 April 1983 the Sub-Committee of the Whole on International Protection held an informal meeting to examine the report presented by Ambassador Felix Schnyder on Military Attacks on Refugee Camps and Settlements in Southern Africa and Elsewhere (EC/SCP/26).1 At the close of this meeting it was decided to establish an informal working group of 12 countries to consider the matter further.
2. The working Group met on several occasions under the chairmanship of Ambassador Kharma, Chairman of the Executive Committee. It was decided at the outset that the Working Group would not modify Ambassador Schnyder's report but that it would rather centre its deliberations on the principles relating to military attacks on refugee camps and settlements in Southern Africa and elsewhere which were contained in an annex to this report.
3. In the course of the discussions it emerged that a majority of participants had reservations about referring such a text to the General Assembly as Ambassador Schnyder has proposed. It was feared that in view of the political climate that could prevail in the General Assembly, the humanitarian aspects of the problem might be overlooked. While this possibility should be left open in the longer term, there was general agreement that the immediate objective of the Working Group should rather be the preparation of a set of draft principles on the matter which could be submitted for adoption to the Executive Committee at it's 34th session. These draft principles will complement the basic elements of Ambassador Schnyder's text.
4. A final report on the outcome to the deliberations of the Working Group will be presented to the Sub-Committee of the Whole on International Protection under item 3 of the provisional annotated agenda (EC/SCP/28).
1 A summary of the discussions of this meeting is contained in document EC/SCP/27 which is attached to this Note.