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[Editorial] What are the Geneva Conventions for?

On Oct 3, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) hospital in Kunduz, northern Afghanistan, was bombed by a Coalition airstrike, killing ten patients including three children, and 12 MSF staff. This is not only the worst casualty for years for MSF in the field, but also a violation of the Geneva Conventions—international humanitarian law that regulates armed conflict and provides protection for non-combatants, the wounded, and medical personnel and units. For Joanne Liu, MSF International President, “This was not just an attack on our hospital—it was an attack on the Geneva Conventions…Even war has rules.”

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