Contemporary disaster relief is underlaid by a consciousness of basic human rights. These have been articulated in the development of humanitarianism since the Declaration of Human Rights at the General Assembly of the United Nations in 1948. In Article 25, it states that everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for health and well-being. Rights in disaster relief span the rights to survival, dignity, development, and security. Because of the complex nature of disaster events, special sets of rights are needed for particular groups of people and circumstances. To this end, there are rights embedded in conventions on refugees, women, children, ex-combatants, and others that by implication are associated with disaster response. The logic of humanitarianism is that all those affected ...

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