Animals and the Law of Armed Conflict

Israel Yearbook on Human Rights, vol. 47 (2017), pp. 35-67

U. of Westminster School of Law Research Paper

46 Pages Posted: 19 Sep 2017

See all articles by Marco Roscini

Marco Roscini

University of Westminster School of Law

Date Written: January 31, 2017

Abstract

In spite of the wide use of animals for military purposes, the law of armed conflict has almost exclusively focused on the protection of human beings. The present article is the first ever in-depth study of how the law of armed conflict applies to animals and fills a serious gap in the literature. The problem has become of great significance in the light of the public opinion’s increasing sensibility towards animal welfare and the emergence of animal rights theories. The main purposes of this article, then, are to assess whether the existing rules of the law of armed conflict provide adequate protection to animals and to highlight the fault lines in the law. The article distinguishes the general provisions of the law of armed conflict, i.e. those that were not adopted with specific regard to animals but the application of which might restrict the killing and injuring of animals, from the provisions that specifically provide protection to animals. The analysis essentially focuses on the killing and injuring of animals in the conduct of hostilities, and only incidentally refers to the exploitation of natural resources, pillage, and seizure of property in occupied territories.

Keywords: law of armed conflict, animals, animal welfare, international humanitarian law, international law, armed conflict

JEL Classification: K33

Suggested Citation

Roscini, Marco, Animals and the Law of Armed Conflict (January 31, 2017). Israel Yearbook on Human Rights, vol. 47 (2017), pp. 35-67; U. of Westminster School of Law Research Paper. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3037931

Marco Roscini (Contact Author)

University of Westminster School of Law ( email )

4 Little Titchfield Street
London, W1W 7UW
United Kingdom

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