Readout of Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Meeting With Experts on Armed Conflict, Civilian Protection

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Pentagon Spokesman Lt. Col. David Herndon provided the following readout:

Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Sasha Baker conducted a roundtable on Friday, November 4, at George Washington University Law School to discuss implementation of the Civilian Harm Mitigation and Response Action Plan (CHMR-AP) with leading experts on armed conflict and civilian protection.  Participants included experts from the Department of Defense (DoD), international organizations, and civil society.

Ms. Baker emphasized the strategic and moral imperative of civilian harm mitigation, noted the importance of the implementation phase to ensure that the CHMR-AP improves DoD’s approach to civilian harm mitigation and response, and explained how the action plan will achieve its objectives while preserving decision space for commanders.

Participants discussed the importance of understanding the civilian environment during armed conflict and emphasized the need for transparency, accountability, and accessibility in the mechanisms used to respond to civilian harm.

Ms. Baker noted that DoD continues to work with experts across the force to implement the CHMR-AP in a way that is scalable and relevant across the full spectrum of military operations.  She also reaffirmed the importance of keeping an open dialogue between civil society and DoD as CHMR-AP implementation continues.

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