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International humanitarian law - Civilians

During the past 60 years the main victims of war have been civilians. The protection of civilians during armed conflict is therefore a cornerstone of international humanitarian law. This protection extends to their public and private property. IHL also identifies and protects particularly vulnerable civilian groups such as women, children and the displaced. Read full overview


  • Precision attack and international humanitarian law

    Precision operations have opened up new possibilities for avoiding the harm to civilians and their property that is the inevitable result of armed conflict. Further, as weaponry becomes more precise, interpretation of IHL is becoming increasingly demanding for an attacker.

    30-09-2005 | International Review of the Red Cross | Michael N. Schmitt

  • The law of military occupation put to the test of human rights law

    This article examines particularly the applicability of human rights during military occupation. The different interests and values at stake – the interests of the occupying forces and those of the civilian population, the protection of human rights and the derogations necessary to maintain order – reveal many grey areas that still exist in the interaction between human rights law and the law of military occupation.

    30-09-2008 | International Review of the Red Cross | Danio Campanelli

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