Detention of Civilians on Military Operations: Reasons for and Challenges to Developing a Special Law of Detention

31 Pages Posted: 18 Feb 2009

See all articles by Bruce Oswald

Bruce Oswald

University of Melbourne - Law School

Date Written: February 18, 2009

Abstract

The taking and handling of civilian detainees during contemporary military operations is increasingly subjected to political, media and judicial scrutiny. This article argues that the most effective and efficient means of ensuring greater certainty, consistency and clarity in the identification and application of appropriate and relevant norms for dealing with detainees is to formalise those norms in a 'special legal regime'. It is only through increased formalisation and systematisation of legal principles, rules and standards that the appropriate balance will be achieved in determining the rights and obligations of both the civilian population and military forces. The author concludes by suggesting a number of principles that should form the basis of some fundamental norms required for this 'special legal regime'.

Keywords: Civilian detainees, military operations, political, media and judicial scrutiny

JEL Classification: K00, K3, K32, K33, K39

Suggested Citation

Oswald, Bruce, Detention of Civilians on Military Operations: Reasons for and Challenges to Developing a Special Law of Detention (February 18, 2009). U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper No. 375, Melbourne Univeristy Law Review, Vol. 32, No. 2, 2008, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1345606

Bruce Oswald (Contact Author)

University of Melbourne - Law School ( email )

University Square
185 Pelham Street, Carlton
Victoria, Victoria 3010
Australia

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