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The application of international humanitarian law and international human rights law in situations of prolonged occupation: only a matter of time?

31-03-2012 Article, International Review of the Red Cross, No. 885, by Vaios Koutroulis

The article deals with the effect of the time factor in the application of international humanitarian law and international human rights law in ‘prolonged belligerent occupations’.

Abstract

The article deals with the effect of the time factor in the application of international humanitarian law (IHL) and international human rights law (IHRL) in ‘prolonged belligerent occupations’. It demonstrates that IHL applies in its entirety to such situations and that the adjustments necessary can be made through the interpretation of existing IHL norms. As for IHRL, the protracted character of an occupation reinforces the importance of respecting and applying human rights. It cannot, however, be invoked in order to influence the interpretation of the notion of a state of emergency leading to the adoption of derogations from IHRL rules.

Biography

Vaios Koutroulis is Maître d’enseignement at the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) and Chargé de cours at the Faculté Libre de Droit de Lille


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