Every Casualty is an organization dedicated to the principles that all casualties of armed conflict should be promptly recorded, correctly identified and publicly acknowledged. (Full disclosure – I’m on the Board for Every Casualty).
We had an important recent success when our advice was accepted and the International Committee of the Red Cross added new language to its most recent commentary on Article 17 for the First Geneva Convention.
The updated Commentary for Article 17 clearly states that deaths caused by the parties to the convention should be recorded. In addition it notes that the identity of the person who died should be established and, if possible, the date and time of death, the cause of death and the location of death, or where a body was found, should also be established as accurately as possible. In line with Every Casualty’s research, the commentary notes that this will help to prevent misidentification of the person in question as well as, at the domestic level, allow for more detail to be issued in a death certificate. The relevant part of the full commentary on Article 17 can be found here.
Special congratulations go to Hamit Dardagan and John Sloboda of Every Casualty who have worked so hard to spread good practice in the casualty recording field.