Since its foundation, MSF has faced different forms of violence against its patients, staff, health facilities and medical vehicles, as well as against national health systems in general. Medical practice can thus be perverted for political and martial purposes. This violence deprives entire populations of vital assistance and is a means for the parties to the conflict to exert, both symbolically and practically, their power over people’s lives.
“Health care under fire”: Interview with Françoise Duroch
In this interview carried out by ICRC to mark its 150th anniversary, Francoise Duroch of Médecins Sans Frontières describes how conflict and violence disrupt health care and how medical workers find themselves the direct targets of violence. She talks about how the stigma attached to sexual violence prevents victims seeking support. Finally, she explains how MSF is sometimes forced to suspend its activities and the conditions under which the organization will go public about a situation.