Armed Conflict

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Territory as a Victim of Colombia’s War

In two recent resolutions, Colombia’s peace jurisdiction (Jurisdicción Especial para la Paz, SJP) resolved that the Katsa Su and the Cxhab Wala Kile, the territories of the indigenous Awá and Nasa peoples respectively, are victims of Colombia’s 50-year civil war. The two territories thus have the same rights that accrue to all accredited victims under the 2016 peace accord: rights to justice, truth, reparation and guarantees of non-repetition, as well as rights to an effective judicial process and to participate in each stage of the judicial process. But what does it mean for a territory to be treated not as the stage on which a conflict unfolds, but as a victim of that conflict, with its own rights? While it is not yet clear how these resolutions will play out in the ongoing investigations, at the least they mean that the SJP is reconceiving restorative justice– a key feature of the Colombian peace accord – to include a broader set of relations. Following a recent line of eco-centric legal ideas percolating through…

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The Duties of Occupying Powers in Relation to the Fight against Covid-19

Significant scholarship is investigating the array of international legal issues pertaining to the fight against Covid-19. This brief post aims at contributing to this debate by assessing the obligations upon occupying powers in this regard. Many sources have been reported that Covid-19 has reached occupied areas such as the OPT (e.g., here) and Northern…

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Reviewing Legal Weapons Reviews: is it possible to verify compliance?

Debates about the legal and ethical implications of new weapons are often based on hypotheticals because information about ongoing research and development is scarce. For instance, discussions about the legality of autonomous weapons systems (AWS) and meaningful human control are taking place (e.g. here, here, here, here, and here) while we are still…

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Hacking Humanitarians? IHL and the protection of humanitarian organizations against cyber operations

For some years, experts have cautioned that the more humanitarian organizations collect data, the more they ‘are exposed to a growing wave of digital attacks and cyber espionage, and have become highly prized targets’. In late January 2020, the issue made headlines: The New Humanitarian reported a ‘sophisticated’ cyber operation…

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(Not) Investigating Kunduz and (Not) Judging in Strasbourg? Extraterritoriality, Attribution and the Duty to Investigate

  A 2009 airstrike near Kunduz, Afghanistan, that led to more than 100 casualties and was ordered by a German colonel will be the subject of oral arguments in the Grand Chamber (GC) of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) in the case of Hanan v. Germany, tomorrow, 26 February 2020. On 4 September…

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