Reciprocity and Reprisals
Forthcoming in Rain Liivoja and Tim McCormack (eds), Routledge Handbook of the Law of Armed Conflict (Routledge, 2015)
19 Pages Posted: 20 Aug 2014
Date Written: August 19, 2014
This chapter addresses the role played by reciprocity and the doctrine of belligerent reprisals in the law of armed conflict. Although such concepts were prominent in the traditional law of war, the contemporary legal regime is characterised by the near elimination of reciprocity as a justification for suspending obligations of the law of armed conflict and a drastically diminished role for belligerent reprisals as a means of law enforcement. The chapter discusses the rules on reciprocity in the law of armed conflict, the treaty prohibitions on belligerent reprisals and whether any scope for reprisals remains, paying attention to situations of non-international armed conflict.
Keywords: Belligerent reprisals, reciprocity, armed conflict
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