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Chapter

Cover International Criminal Law

1. The sources of international criminal law  

This chapter provides a brief introduction to the two main sources of public international law, treaty law and customary international law. It provides a basic overview of the law of treaties and explains the special status of obligations arising under the United Nations Charter. It outlines the key features of customary international law; examines the relationship between treaty law and customary international law; and revisits the idea of whether there is a hierarchy of sources in international law, and how conflicts between international law norms are to be resolved. The chapter also discusses the relationship between international criminal law and other branches of international law, specifically human rights law and international humanitarian law.

Chapter

Cover International Law

27. The Law of Armed Conflict (International Humanitarian Law)  

David Turns

The international law of armed conflict (also known as international humanitarian law or the law of war) regulates the conduct of hostilities—including the use of weaponry—and the protection of victims in situations of both international and non-international armed conflict. Rooted in customary law, often of very great antiquity, since the late nineteenth century it has become one of the most intensively codified areas of international law. This chapter outlines the scope of application of the law; issues of personal status (combatants and civilians); the conduct of hostilities (methods and means of warfare, including choice of weapons and targeting operations); the protection of victims (sick, wounded, shipwrecked, prisoners of war, and civilians); and various ways of securing the law’s implementation and enforcement.

Chapter

Cover International Human Rights Law

25. International Humanitarian Law  

Sandesh Sivakumaran

This chapter examines international humanitarian law, the principal body of international law which applies in times of armed conflict, and which seeks to balance the violence inherent in an armed conflict with the dictates of humanity. International humanitarian law protects the civilian population from the ravages of conflict, and establishes limitations on the means and methods of combat. The chapter first considers the nature of international humanitarian law and identifies some of its cardinal principles and key rules. It then explores the similarities and differences between international humanitarian law and international human rights law, comparing and contrasting their historical origins and conceptual approaches. Given that international humanitarian law applies during armed conflict, the chapter next considers whether there is a need for international human rights law also to apply. Finally, it ascertains the relationship between the two bodies of law and considers some of the difficulties with the application of international human rights law in time of armed conflict.

Chapter

Cover Cassese's International Criminal Law

4. War crimes  

Antonio Cassese, Paola Gaeta, Laurel Baig, Mary Fan, Christopher Gosnell, and Alex Whiting

This chapter begins with a discussion of the notion of war crimes. It then covers the criminalization of the serious violation of a rule of international humanitarian law; the objective and subjective elements of war crimes; the nexus with armed conflict; and war crimes in the International Criminal Court Statute.

Book

Cover Cassese's International Law

Paola Gaeta, Jorge E. Viñuales, and Salvatore Zappalá

This book provides an authoritative account of international law. It preserves and extends Antonio Cassese’s exceptional combination of a historically informed, conceptually strong, and practice-infused analysis of international law, comparing the treatment of most issues in classical international law with the main subsequent developments of this constantly evolving field. Part I of the book covers the origins and foundations of the international community. Part II is about the subjects of the international community, including States, international organizations, individuals, and other international legal subjects. Part III examines the main processes of international law-making and the normative interactions between different norms, of both domestic and international law. Part IV studies the mechanisms of implementation of international law, including State responsibility, diplomatic and judicial means of dispute settlement, and enforcement mechanisms. Part V covers a number of areas which have undergone particular development and reached a high level of specialization, namely, UN law, the law governing the use of force, international humanitarian law, international human rights law, international criminal law, international environmental law, and international economic law (trade and investment).

Chapter

Cover International Law

14. The law of armed conflict  

This chapter examines those parts of international law that regulate how military operations must be conducted jus in bello. It begins in Section 14.2 with an overview of the most important legal sources. Section 14.3 discusses when humanitarian law applies and Section 14.4 examines the issue of battlefield status and the distinction between combatants and civilians. Section 14.5 provides an overview of some of the most basic principles governing the conduct of hostilities while Section 14.6 concerns belligerent occupation and Section 14.7 deals with the regulation of non-international armed conflict. Finally, Section 14.8 explores the relationship between international humanitarian law and human rights law in times of armed conflict.

Book

Cover International Law Concentrate

Ilias Bantekas and Efthymios Papastavridis

Each Concentrate revision guide is packed with essential information, key cases, revision tips, exam Q&As, and more. Concentrates show you what to expect in a law exam, what examiners are looking for, and how to achieve extra marks. International Law Concentrate provides a comprehensive overview of international law and includes key information, key cases, revision tips, and exam questions and answers. Topics covered include the nature of international law and the international system, sources of international law, and the law of treaties. The book also looks at the relationship between international and domestic law. It considers personality, statehood, and recognition, as well as sovereignty, jurisdiction, immunity, and the law of the sea. The book describes state responsibility and looks at peaceful settlement of disputes. Finally, it looks at the use of force and human rights.

Chapter

Cover International Law

16. The Responsibility to Protect  

Spencer Zifcak

This chapter discusses the responsibility to protect, which has become the primary conceptual framework within which to consider international intervention to prevent crimes against humanity; it provides the background to the new doctrine’s appearance with a survey of the existing law and practice with respect to humanitarian intervention. It traces the doctrine’s intellectual and political development both before and after the adoption of the World Summit resolutions that embodied it. Debate about the doctrine has been characterized by significant differences of opinion and interpretation between nations of the North and the South. In that context, the chapter concludes with a detailed consideration of the contemporary standing of the doctrine in international law.

Chapter

Cover Brownlie's Principles of Public International Law

29. International human rights  

This chapter outlines the emergence of human rights in the sphere of international law and organization, and discusses the sources of human rights standards, non-discrimination and collective rights, the scope of human rights standards, and the regional protection and enforcement of human rights.

Chapter

Cover International Law

14. The law of armed conflict  

This chapter examines those parts of international law that regulate how military operations must be conducted jus in bello. It begins in Section 14.2 with an overview of the most important legal sources. Section 14.3 discusses when humanitarian law applies and Section 14.4 examines the issue of battlefield status and the distinction between combatants and civilians. Section 14.5 provides an overview of some of the most basic principles governing the conduct of hostilities while Section 14.6 concerns belligerent occupation and Section 14.7 deals with the regulation of non-international armed conflict. Finally, Section 14.8 explores the relationship between international humanitarian law and human rights law in times of armed conflict.

Chapter

Cover International Law

14. The use of force and collective security  

This chapter looks at the use of force and collective security. Today, the United Nations Charter embodies the indispensable principles of international law on the use of force. These include the prohibition on the unilateral use of force found in Article 2(4), and the recognition of the inherent right of all States to use force in self-defence found in Article 51. Finally, under Chapter VII, a collective security system centred upon the Security Council was established for the maintenance of international peace and security. A key debate over the scope of Article 2(4) is whether a new exception has been recognized which would allow the use of force motivated by humanitarian considerations. It is argued that these ‘humanitarian interventions’ would allow a State to use force to protect people in another State from gross and systematic human rights violations when the target State is unwilling or unable to act.

Chapter

Cover International Law

15. The law of armed conflict  

This chapter assesses the law of armed conflict. The right to resort to armed force, known as ‘jus ad bellum’, is a body of law that addresses the permissibility of entering into war in the first place. Despite the restrictions imposed by this body of law, it is clear that international law does not fully forbid the use of force, and instances of armed disputes between and within States continue to exist. Consequently, a second, older body of law exists called ‘jus in bello’, or the law of armed conflict, which has sought to restrain, or at least to regulate, the actual conduct of hostilities. The basic imperative of this body of law has been to restrict warfare in order to account for humanitarian principles by prohibiting certain types of weapons, or protecting certain categories of persons, such as wounded combatants, prisoners of war, or the civilian population.