Casualty Recording in Human Rights and Humanitarian Law

Our latest report provides an oversight of the principles and provisions of international human rights and humanitarian law which are relevant to the task of casualty recording.

International humanitarian and human rights law contain extensive requirements regarding states’ duties to account for the dead
and missing in armed conflict and other situations of gross human rights violations. Some of these obligations are explicitly stated
in international law, whilst others arise implicitly from a corresponding human right. Although these duties are universally binding on
all states, in practice they are frequently neglected or inadequately fulfilled. This is due to a number of factors, including a lack of
awareness and understanding of the relevant requirements, and their basis in international law.

This report emphasises the clear legally binding obligations, whilst also highlighting the requirements of non-binding but widely accepted protocols and guidelines. The report aims to ensure all policy makers, diplomats, military leaders and other relevant actors are fully aware of and understand states’ duties to account for the dead.