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Captivity and the Law: Hostages, Detainees, and Criminal Defendants in the Fight Against Terrorism

10 Pages Posted: 24 Jun 2016  

Adam R. Pearlman

United States Department of Defense

Date Written: June 8, 2016

Abstract

Appearing in the annual "International Practitioner's Notebook" edition of the ILSA Journal of International and Comparative Law, this article briefly addresses three issues related to modern counterterrorism operations. First, it examines whether there are limits on the force that can be used in an operation to rescue hostages held by a terrorist organization. Second, it looks at how the detention policies and practices of the United States, specifically with respect to those detained at Guantanamo Bay, compare to the evolving approach of the international community. Finally, it describes military commissions as a mode of prosecuting alleged war criminals, and how United States and international law relate to one another in this context under present law, mindful that litigation in this area is ongoing.

Keywords: Terrorism, counterterrorism, kidnapping, hostages, rescue, detention, detainee, Guantanamo, GTMO, military commissions, international law, Al Qaeda, ISIS, ISIL, war crimes

Suggested Citation

Pearlman, Adam R., Captivity and the Law: Hostages, Detainees, and Criminal Defendants in the Fight Against Terrorism (June 8, 2016). ILSA Journal of International and Comparative Law, Vol. 22, No. 2, 2016. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2792487

Adam R. Pearlman (Contact Author)

United States Department of Defense ( email )

Arlington, VA 20301
United States

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