International Humanitarian Law (IHL) - LAW 464

This course explores the development and operation of International Humanitarian Law (IHL), which is the body of Public International Law that regulates conduct during armed conflict. Although IHL is the expression most widely used, the same body of law is often, and more correctly, referred to as Law of Armed Conflict (LOAC), and occasionally referred to as Law of War or as Jus in Bello. International Humanitarian Law is the body of law that regulates armed conflict. It seeks to limit the effects of armed conflict by regulating the means and methods of warfare and by protecting persons who are not or are no longer participating in the hostilities. IHL has long been a part of Public International Law, but has only been subject to treaty since the end of the 19th century. Traditionally, conventional IHL has been divided into the Law of the Hague (concerned with methods and means of warfare) and the Law of Geneva (concerned with protection of victims of war). While most IHL treaties were designed to regulate armed conflict between states (international armed conflict), the trend in 21st century warfare has been toward internal armed conflicts that often involve the armed of when the Geneva Conventions and their Additional Protocols were created. As a result, a significant portion of the course will be devoted to examining the challenges of post-20th century armed conflict. IHL is related to other fields of Public International Law, in particular to International Criminal Law and to International Human Rights Law. The precise boundaries between these fields are a subject of continuing debate. The course will consider the modern dynamic of these bodies of law, and more importantly, examine how they may affect future military operations.
Language of Instruction: English (legal terms, however, are also given in Arabic and French).