Casualty Recorders Issue Joint Communiqué

On the 25th of November 2009, the twenty founding members of the Casualty Recorders Network (formerly IPN) released the following first joint communiqué:

The organisations listed below announce the formation of the first international network of organisations who publicly record the victims of armed conflict as individuals, which has now begun its activities.

We believe that documenting the details of every human killed in war is a moral act based on recognising the value of every human life. We also believe that it is necessary for justice, holding the prosecutors of war to account, as a means to overcome uncertainties about deaths which are only recorded as numbers, and as a way of constructing a lasting historical memory of the dead.

Failure to comprehensively record every individual casualty of war can only bring greater pain and suffering. This suffering ranges from the denial of the experience of victims’ families, all the way through to community grievances which stimulate the renewal or escalation of violent conflict through politically motivated claims. The only long term answer to these problems is the establishment of detailed and certain truth.

We will collaborate to raise our capacity, visibility and collective strength, thereby enhancing casualty recording activities worldwide. Together we will be better able to overcome the problems we face every day in our work. Our final goal is that the world recognise the need to record every casualty of every conflict wherever it happens.

We call on governments and intergovernmental agencies to support the activity of casualty recording worldwide.

Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC)
B'Tselem
Centro de Recursos para el Análisis de Conflictos (CERAC)
Darfur Peace and Development
Elman Peace Centre
Fundación de Antropología Forense de Guatemala (FAFG)
The Human Rights Center
The Humanitarian Law Centre
INSEC
The Institute for Conflict Management
Iraq Body Count
Kaah Foundation
National Society for Human Rights
Organisation for Human Rights Activists (OHURA)
Organization for Somalis Protection and Development (OSPAD)
Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR)
The Research and Documentation Center of Sarajevo (RDC)
Rift Valley Institute
Somali Human Rights Association (SOHRA)
Sri Lankan War Victims Registry