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Accepted Paper:

The ICRC in Rio: humanitarianism when violence has no endpoint in view [Remote]  
Pedro Silva Rocha Lima (University of Manchester)

Paper short abstract:

The ICRC's SAF intiative in Rio converges with public service providers' perception that there is no endpoint in view for the outbursts of armed violence that affects the city and its services. SAF is imbued with a temporality that stretches into an unknown future.

Paper long abstract:

Under its Safer Access Framework (SAF), the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) trains public service providers - school and clinic staff - on how to manage risks associated with armed violence in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The initiative does not contemplate an endpoint for the violence that affects public services, which in fact converges with its beneficiaries' expectations. Both the ICRC and its beneficiaries hold the view that armed violence in Rio is cyclical and ever-shifting. Espousing the humanitarian drive to treat consequences rather than causes, SAF's projected temporal horizon fades into an unknown distant future as public institutions are expected to maintain the initiative on their own once the ICRC leaves. Even those staff working in seemingly safe locations are told to attend trainings and prepare in case the dynamics of urban violence shifts and their neighbourhood starts to see shootings. This represents a shift from the usual humanitarian imaginary of a "short" temporality for immediate action during armed conflict. Similarly, it represents a shift in how the Brazilian state has framed its interventions in the favela under a short temporality of the war on drugs and long temporality of pacification (Machado da Silva, 2010). In this paper, I will present findings and preliminary thoughts from ongoing fieldwork in Duque de Caxias (Rio de Janeiro state) and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Panel P117
Temporal Horizons in Development and Humanitarian Interventions: Traces, 'Afterlives', and Unintended Consequences
  Session 1 Friday 24 July, 2020, -