The Expansive Definition of 'Protected Persons' in War Crime Jurisprudence
The Army Lawyer 23 (May 2009)
5 Pages Posted: 20 Jul 2013 Last revised: 18 Aug 2013
Date Written: May 1, 2009
Contemporary international armed conflicts are more likely to resemble the inter-ethnic and religious conflicts of Yugoslavia and Iraq than the state-versus-state conflicts envisioned by the drafters of the Geneva Conventions. This explosive rise of inter-ethnic and religious conflicts often means that ethnicity is “determinative of national allegiance” and in this environment “the requirement of nationality is less adequate to define protected persons.” Therefore, the changing dynamics of international armed conflicts requires a more expansive definition of protected person which includes offering protections to those ethnic or religious groups that have grave breaches committed upon them by their own government.
Keywords: war crimes, protected persons, Geneva Conventions, Iraq, Yugoslavia, international armed conflicts, grave breaches, war crimes prosecution
JEL Classification: K10, K33
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation