The utilization of international humanitarian law and, in particular, the Geneva Convention Treaty Régime, to deter acts of international terrorism, with special reference to armed struggles by "Peoples" for their right to self-determination

Chadwick, Elizabeth (1994) The utilization of international humanitarian law and, in particular, the Geneva Convention Treaty Régime, to deter acts of international terrorism, with special reference to armed struggles by "Peoples" for their right to self-determination. PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.

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Abstract

In 1937, the international community preliminarily agreed on a definition of international terrorism. A major World War and Cold War since that time have made impossible any such modern consensus. In particular, the U.N. principles of the equal rights and self-determination of "Peoples" have caused political and juridical confusion in that liberation fighters who utilize terror methods as one tactic in an overall political strategy to achieve self-determination are frequently termed "terrorists", and prosecuted as such.

In order to regulate wars of self-determination under international law, and to control the means and methods of warfare utilized in them, international humanitarian law (IHL) was extended in 1977 to include armed conflicts for the right to self-determination, "as enshrined in ... the Declaration on Principles of International Law concerning Friendly Relations and Co-operation among States in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations". Thus, acts of terrorism perpetrated during armed struggles for self-determination are separable from random acts of international violence, and when perpetrated by states or insurgent forces during wars of self-determination, may be prosecuted under IHL as war crimes.

However, although states are obligated to seek out and prosecute the perpetrators of illicit acts of warfare, they rarely do so. Nevertheless, should IHL be fully utilized during wars of self-determination, if only for purposes of guidance, the separability of illicit acts of war would enable the international community to reach consensus more easily regarding a definition of terrorism in general, and a co-ordination of efforts to deter its occurrence.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords:Geneva Conventions (1949), International law, National self-determination, Terrorism
Faculties/Schools:UK Campuses > Faculty of Social Sciences, Law and Education > School of Law
ID Code:924
Deposited By:Janet Wharton
Deposited On:06 Oct 2009 14:46
Last Modified:06 Oct 2009 14:46

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