Dear colleagues,

In 2018, the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement will mark their 20th anniversary. Because the Guiding Principles have become the accepted international standard for the protection of internally displaced persons (IDPs), an impressive number of States have used them to guide the creation of national legislation, policies, and strategies on internal displacement. They are also widely regarded as the benchmark for preventing, responding to, and finding solutions for internal displacement.

And yet, despite this important progress in the last twenty years, the majority of States coping with large-scale displacement still do not have national IDP laws or policies. There are also important and persistent challenges to implementing the Guiding Principles, including the need to increase the engagement of IDPs in the decisions that affect them, and the need to ensure that collective efforts address the root causes of internal displacement.

Global programme for national-level action

In view of the foregoing, the 20th anniversary of the Guiding Principles (henceforth “GP20”) is a unique opportunity for us to join our efforts worldwide to re-invigorate national-level action to enhance IDP protection, and to work more concertedly with a broad range of stakeholders on prevention and solutions.

Protection clusters are well placed to engage in this global programme for national-level action, in support of the Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of IDPs and in close collaboration with UNHCR.

It is anticipated that national-level action, if pursued globally and collectively around the theme “Prevent, Protect, and Resolve”, can support system-wide efforts to build confidence with IDP-affected States and a range of stakeholders – in a manner that identifies both the challenges and the targeted support that protection actors can bring to addressing them.

GP20 initiatives

In view of this, and as you plan for 2018, we encourage you to use GP20 to galvanize national-level action in favour of IDPs. This could mean, for instance, bringing IDPs into decision-making processes and using the Guiding Principles as a framework to reinforce the capacity of local and national actors to provide protection for IDPs.

Support from the GPC

The GPC will serve as the overall platform for coordination of the global programme of national-level action, reaching out to its partnership worldwide, and has dedicated a webpage on the GP20. We are organizing thematic discussions on the Guiding Principles and a global protection conference on the theme of GP20: “prevent, protect, resolve”. We will also support other events convened by the Special Rapporteur and UNHCR.

Submit your activities

The dedicated webpage for the GP20

  • Shows a world map highlighting events and initiatives at national, regional and global level in different colours;
  • Provides a calender function for easy navigation; and
  • Provides a filter function by organization.

Over the coming weeks, the GPC will reach out to you on GP20. We would be grateful if you could already communicate your ideas and questions using the e-mail

In order to submit your activities please fill the submission form here.