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Editorial
December 19, 2007

2008 Theme Issue on Violence and Human RightsCall for Papers

Author Affiliations
 

Author Affiliations: Dr Cole (tbcole@bellsouth.net) is Contributing Editor and Ms Flanagin (annette.flanagin@jama-archives.org) is Managing Deputy Editor, JAMA.

JAMA. 2007;298(23):2792-2793. doi:10.1001/jama.298.23.2792

JAMA will publish its annual theme issue on violence and human rights in August 2008. As in previous years, we encourage authors to submit manuscripts reporting the results of original research on the causes, consequences, and prevention of violence and human rights abuses. All topics related to violence and human rights are of interest, but this year we specifically invite manuscripts on the health effects of armed conflict.

Between 2002 and 2005, sub-Saharan Africa was the only region with a decline in armed conflicts, while the number of armed conflicts increased in the other 4 regions of the world.1 Today, more than 50 armed conflicts are occurring around the world.1 Perhaps the most prominent is the war in Iraq, estimated to account for nearly 20% of all battle-related deaths worldwide in 2005.1 According to the US Department of Defense,2 as of November 9, 2007, deaths of US military personnel totaled more than 3800 in and around Iraq and nearly 400 in and around Afghanistan. In addition, more than 30 000 US military personnel have been wounded in these conflicts, many of them so severely that they would not have survived previous wars. These figures do not account for other coalition forces and civilians killed and injured since the onset of the current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. In addition, the number of reported civilians killed during the Iraq war ranges from tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands and has been the subject of much controversy.35 These figures also do not include the deaths and injuries associated with the more than 50 other armed conflicts occurring around the world. Moreover, although reliable data on civilian deaths and injuries are difficult to obtain, the number of violent armed campaigns that intentionally target civilians is reported to be increasing.1

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