The International Institute of Humanitarian Law is an independent, non-profit, humanitarian organisation founded in 1970. Its headquarters are situated in Villa Ormond, Sanremo (Italy).
The main purpose of the Institute is to promote international humanitarian law, human rights, refugee law and related issues.
Thanks to its specific, well-tested experience, the Institute has earned an international reputation as a centre of excellence in the field of training, research, and the dissemination of all aspects of international humanitarian law.Considering the aims it pursues, the Institute works in close collaboration with the most important international organisations dedicated to the humanitarian cause, including the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), and the International Organization for Migration (IOM). It has operational relations with the EU, UNESCO, NATO, OIF (International Francophony Organisation), and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. It has consultative status with the United Nations (ECOSOC) and participatory status with the Council of Europe.
Members of the Institute are of different nationalities. In accordance with the Statutes, they are persons that have particularly distinguished themselves through competence or activities in fields of specific interest to the Organisation. Institutions significantly contributing to the work of the Institute may also be admitted as members. Qualified persons and academic institutions, as also nations and international intergovernmental organisations contributing to the activities of the Institute, may be admitted as Associate members but may not vote. The General Assembly establishes and guides the general policy of the Institute.
The Council, which is elected by the General Assembly, oversees the management of the Institute, determining the programme of activities. It elects the President and Vice-Presidents, and appoints the Secretary-General and Treasurer, who then form the Executive Board.
The Municipality of Sanremo and the Italian Red Cross are ex officio members of the Council of the Institute.
The financial resources of the Institute comprise membership fees, course participant fees, voluntary contributions of Governments, Institutions or Organisations, and subsidies, bequests or donations. The financial resources of the Institute are modest if compared with the extent of its commitment and activity in a field of increasing interest to the international community.