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close this bookLaw in Humanitarian Crises, Volume I : How Can International Humanitarian Law be made Effective in Armed Conflicts? (ECHO)
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentIntroduction
close this folderThe Laws of War: Problems of Implementation in Contemporary Conflicts
View the documentI. Introduction
close this folderII. Implementation Provisions and Mechanisms
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View the document1. From 1899 to the Second World War
View the document2. The Post-Second World War Trials
View the document3. The Post-1945 Conventions: General
View the document4. The Post-1945 Conventions: Humanitarian, Monitoring and Fact-Pinding Tasks
View the document5. The Post-1945 Conventions: Punishment and Compensation
View the document6. Other Mechanisms of Implementation
View the document7. The Involvement of the United Nations
View the document8. The International Court of Justice
close this folderIII. Problems of Implementation in Wars since 1980
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View the document1. Iran-Iraq War 1980-88
View the document2. The 1990-91 Gulf Conflict
View the document3. The Wars in the Former Yugoslavia since 1991
View the document4. Civil War and Humanitarian Intervention in Somalia 1992-95
View the document5. International Conference, Geneva, August-September 1993
View the document6. Rwanda 1994
close this folderIV. General Issues
View the document1. Woodrow Wilson's Dilemma in 1914
View the document2. Successors' Responses to illegal Acts of Previous Regimes
View the document3. One Alternative Vision
close this folderV. Summary and Conclusions
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View the document1. Realist and Idealist Images of the Laws of War
View the document2. Still a World of States
View the document3. Humanitarianism as a Substitute for Policy
View the document4. Application to Non-International Conflicts
View the document5. Mines
View the document6. Limits of Compliance Provisions
View the document7. Trials
View the document8. International Criminal Court
View the document9. Reparations
View the document10. The United Nations
View the document11. Barbarians?
View the document12. A Set of Professional Military Standards?
View the document13. Need to Keep Our Own Houses in Order
View the document14. The Relation between Ius in Bello and Ius ad Bellum
View the document15. Taking Implementation Seriously
close this folderThe Implementation of International Humanitarian Law in the Framework of United Nations Peace-keeping Operations
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View the documentI. The United Nations and Humanitarian Law
View the documentII. The failure of the UN in Constituting Enforcement Instruments and the Practice of the Security Council of Authorizing Enforcement Action by States
View the documentIII. The Law of International Armed Conflicts and UN Enforcement Operations Under Chapter VII
View the documentIV. The Alternative Experience of Peace-keeping Operations
View the documentV. The 1994 Convention on the Safety of United Nations Personnel as an Instrument Proscribing Attacks Against United Nations Missions in the Framework of Ius ad Bellum and the Contextual Recognition of the Applicability of Ius in Bello
View the documentVI. The Applicability of International Humanitarian Law to Peace-keeping Operations in the Light of General Instruments of International Law
View the documentVII. The Practice of Specific Instruments Concerning the Applicability of International Humanitarian Law in Peace-keeping Operations
View the documentVIII. A Conclusion in the Light of the 1994 Convention on the Safety of United Nations Personnel
close this folderInternational Humanitarian Law and the Law of Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentI. Introduction
close this folderII. The Inadequacy of International Refugee Law in Situations of Armed Conflict
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View the document1. The Need for Reconsidering the Refugee Definitions in International Law
View the document2. The Need for Improving the Substantive Rights of Refugees in Situations of Armed Conflict
View the document3. The Need for Improving International Co-operation with Regard to Refugees from Situations of Armed Conflict
View the document4. The Need for Further Consideration of International Action in Favour of Refugees from Situations of Armed Conflict
close this folderIII. The Inadequacy of International Law in Respect of Internally Displaced Persons
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View the document1. Existing Norms of International Law Applying to Internally Displaced Persons
View the document2. The Lacunae of International Law in Respect of Internally Displaced Persons
View the document3. Possible Ways of Improving the Legal Situation of Internally Displaced Persons
View the document4. The Need for Further Consideration of International Action in Favour of Internally Displaced Persons
close this folderIV. The Need for Comprehensive Approaches
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View the document1. Overcoming the Differentiation Between Externally Displaced Persons (Refugees) and Internally Displaced Persons
View the document2. Overcoming the Still Existing Differentiation in International Law as Regards Norms Applicable Before, During and After Situations of Armed Conflicts Resulting in Forced Movements of Persons
View the documentV. Conclusions and Recommendations
View the documentNotes on the Contributors
View the documentAbbreviations

I. Introduction

Once again, the recent belligerent conflicts, in particular in Bosnia Herzegovina, Chechnya, and Rwanda, have made (or should have made) the international community understand that, not with standing all commendable efforts by governmental and non-governmental organisations, it is faced with a most serious humanitarian crisis. As a consequence of the extensive media coverage, the plight of the civilians displaced by such events, be it externally or internally, their unspeakable human suffering, have again been brought to the attention of the international community Although it must be admitted that international - humanitarian - law has only a limited role to play in the context of seeking to prevent and to reduce such suffering, it is evident that, with a view to the present state of international humanitarian law and its implementation, international lawyers are seriously called upon to consider ways and means to better implement the existing body of international humanitarian law in a wide sense and to improve its substantive rules. Such action should encompass, inter alia, international refugee law and the - however, only emerging - set of norms applicable to internally displaced persons, as very considerable numbers (if not most) of the civilian victims of such events are subjected to involuntary displacement, i.e. they are either directly forced by the belligerent parties to leave their places of habitual residence or they are indirectly forced to do so in order to survive the imminent consequences of situations of armed conflict.

Although the factual reasons, circumstances, and results of such involuntary displacements are, in practical terms, usually the same, the civilians involved will be subject to quite a different legal regime simply depending upon the mere fact of whether they have crossed, during their displacement, an internationally recognized border: if they have done so and are thus to be considered as externally displaced persons, they might be eligible for protection under the rules of international refugee law; if they have not done so and are, thus, to be considered as internally displaced persons, they benefit only from the - still very incomplete - set of rules applicable to such persons. Therefore, this paper is structured into three parts: the first one addresses the inadequacies of international refugee law in situations of armed conflicts, the second one deals with the inadequacies of international law in respect of internally displaced persons in such situations, whereas the third one seeks to establish the need for comprehensive approaches intended to overcome the existing differentiation in the existing legal regime with regard to refugees on the one hand, and internally displaced persons on the other hand.