Unequal Before the Law: The Case for the Elimination of the Distinction between International and Non-International Armed Conflict
Leiden Journal of International Law, Vol. 20, pp 441-465, 2007
46 Pages Posted: 22 Apr 2011
Date Written: August 17, 2006
This article examines the possibility of creating a law of armed conflict that could be uniformly applied to both international and non-international armed conflict. The article looks at the history of modern armed conflict, and charts the progression of warfare from a predominantly interstate event to that which is more likely to be characterized as non-international or internal. The increasing prevalence of non-international armed conflicts throughout the twentieth century has lead to ongoing moves on behalf of the international community to bring the regulation of such conflicts further within the ambit of international regulation. With this in mind, the article argues that such moves have blurred the historical distinction between types of armed conflict to the point where the distinction could be eliminated altogether. By looking at international treaties, tribunals, and state practice, this article asserts that the law of armed conflict could be uniformly applied, with the aim of ensuring that all participants in armed conflict are equally and humanely treated.
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