Sayaka Ri Humanities and Social Science
Analyzing and Optimizing Data Collection on the Attacks on Health-Care Facilities in Syria
The Syrian civil war is approaching its fifth year of conflict and has been labelled the worst humanitarian disaster of recent times. Since the beginning of the conflict, the Al-Assad regime has systematically targeted health-care facilities and personnel as a weapon of war. In international criminal law, these attacks are a war crime and documentation is important to preserve evidence for purposes of accountability. Despite the increasing number of attacks on health-care systems in the twenty-first century, data on attacks are lacking and there is no standardized method for reporting attacks on health-care in conflict settings.
The conflict in Syria has prompted several organizations to develop specific documentation methods to track, report and monitor attacks on health-care. My research involves aggregating and optimizing the different documentation methods. This includes local reporting, satellite imagery, and open-source data collection methods. Through analyzing different methodologies and their datasets, I will identify specific elements required for this type of data to be admissible to any judiciary body. By developing a minimum standard for the data on the attacks on health-care, I hope to contribute to the urgent need to establish a comprehensive system for regular reporting of acts of violence against health care infrastructure.