The Applicability of International Humanitarian Law to the Conﬂict in Libya
International Community Law Review, Vol. 14, No. 4, 2012
34 Pages Posted: 28 Feb 2014 Last revised: 28 Sep 2018
Date Written: July 29, 2012
The purpose of this article is to examine the applicability of international humanitarian law to the 2011 conﬂict in Libya in its consecutive phases. We argue that the situation in Libya rose to the level of non-international armed conﬂict between the government forces and insurgents united by the National Transitional Council by the end of February 2011. The military intervention by a multi-state coalition acting under the Security Council mandate since March 2011 occasioned an international armed conﬂict between Libya and the intervening States. We consider and reject the arguments in favor of conﬂict convergence caused by the increased collaboration between the rebels and NATO forces. Similarly, we refute the propositions that the Gaddaﬁ government’s gradual loss of power brought about conﬂict de-internationalisation. Finally, we conclude that both parallel conﬂicts in Libya terminated at the end of October 2011. The article aspires to shed light on the controversial issues relating to conﬂict qualiﬁcation in general and to serve as a basis for the assessment of the scope of responsibility of the actors in the Libyan conﬂict in particular.
Keywords: Libya, NATO, NTC, non-international armed conﬂict, international armed conﬂict, internationalisation of armed conﬂicts, humanitarian law
JEL Classification: K33
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation