UN Humanitarian Civil-Military Coordination (UN-CMCoord)
UN-CMCoord is defined as the essential dialogue and interaction between civilian and military actors in humanitarian emergencies that is necessary to protect and promote humanitarian principles, avoid competition, minimize inconsistency, and, when appropriate, pursue common goals.
OCHA Afghanistan CMCoord section promotes the following principles
Humanity: Human suffering must be addressed wherever it is found. The purpose of humanitarian action is to protect life and health and ensure respect for human beings.
Impartiality: Humanitarian actors must not take sides in hostilities or engage in controversies of a political, racial, religious or ideological nature.
Neutrality:Humanitarian action must be carried out on the basis of need alone, giving priority to the most urgent cases of distress and making no distinctions on the basis of nationality, race, gender, religious belief, class or political opinions.
Operational independence of humanitarian action:In any civil-military coordination humanitarian actors must retain the lead role in undertaking and directing humanitarian activities. The independence of humanitarian action and decision-making must be preserved both at the operational and policy levels at all times. Humanitarian organizations must not implement tasks on behalf of the military nor represent or implement their policies. Basic requisites such as freedom of movement for humanitarian staff, freedom to conduct independent assessments, freedom of selection of staff, freedom to identify beneficiaries of assistance based on their needs, or free flow of communications between humanitarian agencies as well as with the media, must not be impeded.
Preservation of Humanitarian Space
In Afghanistan humanitarian agencies and NGOs often find themselves operating in very close proximity to military and armed groups. In these circumstances it is essential that humanitarians conduct themselves in such a manner as will ensure they are accepted and recognised as neutral and independent actors.
Similarly, it is essential, in these circumstances that military and armed groups respect the neutral, impartial and independent nature of humanitarians, and humanitarian activities.
If you are concerned that the actions or behavior of military or armed groups in your area is hampering or hindering your activities or compromising your neutrality or independence, you may wish to inform your local OCHA office who may be able to support you, or offer you assistance on this matter.
OCHA contact numbers with associated areas of responsibility are outlined in these maps.
UN-CMCoord Awareness Raising and Training
OCHA Afghanistan are available to provide presentations and training to humanitarian organizations operating in Afghanistan who wish to raise awareness levels among their staff teams, in regard to UN-CMCoord and appropriate interaction between humanitarians and military/armed groups.
Please contact OCHA Afghanistan for further details.