Displacement is a life-changing event. While the often traumatic experience of displacement cannot be undone, internally displaced persons (IDPs) need to be able to resume a normal life by achieving a durable solution. As articulated in principle 28 of the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement, IDPs have a right to a durable solution and often need assistance in their efforts. Guiding Principles 28-30 set out the rights of IDPs to durable solutions, the responsibilities of national authorities, and the role of humanitarian and development actors to assist durable solutions.
Principle 28 recognizes that the competent authorities have the primary duty and responsibility to establish conditions, as well as provide the means, which allow IDPs to return voluntarily, in safety and with dignity, to their homes or places of habitual residence, or to resettle voluntarily in another part of the country. Securing durable solutions for the internally displaced is also in the State’s best interests. Leaving IDPs in continued marginalization without the prospect of a durable solution may become an obstacle to long-term peace stability, recovery and reconstruction in post-crisis countries.
Facilitating durable solutions requires that all stakeholders, including national and local authorities as well as humanitarian and development actors, work together, identify the right strategies and activities to assist IDPs in this process, and set criteria that will help to determine to what extent a durable solution has been achieved.
The present Framework on Durable Solutions for Internally Displaced Persons aims to provide clarity on the concept of a durable solution and provides general guidance on how to achieve it. This version of the Framework builds on a pilot version released in 2007, which the Inter-Agency Standing Committee welcomed and suggested be field-tested. The Framework was revised and finalized in 2009, taking into account valuable feedback from the field on the pilot version and subsequent drafts.
The revision process was led by the Representative of the Secretary-General on human rights of internally displaced persons working in close cooperation with the Cluster Working Group on Early Recovery and the Protection Cluster Working Group, in particular the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the United Nations Development Programme, the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, the International Organization for Migration, the United Nations Children’s Fund, the United Nations Environment Programme and the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre. Support was also provided by the Brookings-Bern Project on Internal Displacement.