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Fordham Diploma Program Meets Needs of More Complex, Dangerous Humanitarian Assistance Environment
Contributed by Inside Fordham Online, USA   
Thursday, 07 September 2006
In June, Mark Malloch Brown, deputy secretary-general of the United Nations, told the 19th graduating class of the International Diploma in Humanitarian Assistance (IDHA) program that humanitarian aid work had become much more lethal since his days in the field.

“When I started all I had to do on a very dangerous place on the Thai-Cambodian border was to make sure that the car I was traveling in had a big U.N. painted on the roof and a blue U.N. flag on its front,” he said. “That was enough, people didn’t target me.”

Brown wondered how many IDHA graduates had been killed in the course of humanitarian missions. “I certainly know that in the U.N. it is our development and humanitarian workers, not our peacekeepers in general who bear the brunt of loss of life in many years,” Brown said. “But in many years it is just the one or two at a time of humanitarian workers picked off in different conflicts who in the end of the year provide the bulk of tragic deaths in the United Nations. It’s getting to be a dangerous job and of course one reason why it is getting to be so dangerous, is this reckless character of modern intrastate war.”

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