News & events

Public Lecture: 1 August 2019

Humanity in War:
Why I still believe in the Geneva Conventions? 

Public Lecture

by Mutsa Mugangavari

Humanitarian Affairs Advisor, International Committee of the Red Cross

Mrs Mutsa Magangavari

International Humanitarian Law (IHL) or the Law of War is a branch of Public International Law that regulates the means and methods that warring parties should use and protects those who are not or no longer taking part in the war. As described to me by my university Professor many years ago; the purpose of this law is to maintain a sense of humanity in war. In 1949, States gathered to negotiate the Geneva Convention, a comprehensive international framework that would provide protections in war. This framework has inspired a number of international treaties. Yet, 70 years later, we continue to see gruesome acts in war, direct attacks on those who should be protected, the deployment of weapons the drafters of the Geneva conventions could never have imagined and the presence of warring parties that we fear to speak of. As we commemorate 70 years of the Geneva Conventions, I ask myself: is there humanity in war? 


Thursday, 01 August 2019, 19:00
St Augustine's Auditorium
53 Ley Road, Victory Park, Johannesburg
***Free of charge, although a cash donation to St Augustine would be appreciated***


Mutsa Mugangavari 

BA LLB LLM Rhodes University

Born in Zimbabwe, Mutsa completed her tertiary education in South Africa. She holds Bachelor of Arts (2002), Bachelor of Laws (2004) and Master of Laws (2007) degrees from Rhodes University, South Africa. In 2008, she completed her articles of clerkship and went on to practice human rights law. Thereafter she was appointed as a lecturer at Rhodes University where she lectured public international law and clinical law. During this time she worked was involved in various access to justice projects and contributed to various working groups that assess the impact of law on the poor and marginalised, including refugees and migrants.

In 2012 she joined her current employer, the International Committee of the Red Cross delegation for Southern Africa where she is holds a position as a Humanitarian Affairs Advisor.   Specialising in international humanitarian law (IHL), she works with Southern African governments, supporting the implementation of IHL, training armed and security forces and promoting law and policy with multilateral organisations. She has published various articles in the field of IHL. Her research interests include humanitarian diplomacy, peace support operations, conflict dialogue and mediation.