United States of America

National | Legislation


Current Constitution

International Criminal Court

US Code, Title 22, Sec. 262, Restriction Relating to United States Accession to Any New International Criminal Tribunal

American Service-Members' Protection Act, 30 July 2003

War Crimes, Crimes Against Humanity, Genocide

War Crimes Act of 1996 (as updated)

US Code, Title 18, Chapter 50A, Genocide

See also: "Fact Sheet: A Comprehensive Strategy and New Tools to Prevent and Respond to Atrocities", The White House, 23 April 2012 and "President Obama Speaks on Preventing Mass Atrocities", The White House, 23 April 2012


US Code, Title 18, Chapter 113C, Torture

US Code, Title 28, Chapter 85, Sec 1350, Torture Victim Protection Act of 1991

See also: Association for the Prevention of Torture (APT), Country file United States of America (unofficial document, see in pdf below)

Executive Order No. 13491, 74 Fed. Reg. 4893, Ensuring Lawful Interrogations, 27 January 2009

The executive order provides that all U.S. Government interrogations of detainees in an armed conflict comply with common article 3 of the Geneva Conventions and the standards set forth in the Army Field Manual interrogation guidelines. It forbids U.S. Government officials from relying on any interpretation of the law regarding interrogations issued by the U.S. Department of Justice between September 11, 2001, and January 20, 2009. It requires the CIA to close any detention facilities it operates and orders all U.S. Government agencies to provide the International Red Cross with access to detainees. It also establishes an interagency Special Task Force on Interrogation and Transfer Policies to review whether further guidance beyond the Army Field Guide is necessary and to review the practice of transferring detainees to third countries to ensure that such practice does not result in torture and otherwise complies with the laws, international obligations, and policies of the United States.

Source: Global Legal Monitor

Military Commissions Act of 2006, S3930


US Code, Title 18, Chapter 113B, Terrorism


Detainee Treatment Act of 2005 (as included in the Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 2006) Incorporating the McCain Amendment and the Graham-Levin Amendment on Detainees (see here, Sections 1001-1006)

See also: Memorandum for John A. Rizzo, Acting General Counsel, Central Intelligence Agency, Re: Application of the Detainee Treatment Act to Conditions of COnfinement at Central Intelligence Agency Detention Facilities, US Department of Justice, 31 August 2006

USA Patriot Act of 2001

Other human rights law

Alien's Action for Tort, U.S. Code, Title 28, Sec. 1350

Military Law

Uniform Code of Military Justice

US Code, Title 10, Armed Forces

US Code, Title 50, War and National Defense

US Code, Title 18, Chapter 212, Military Extraterritorial Jurisdiction

US Code, Title 22, Chapter 9, Foreign Wars, War Materials, and Neutrality

Army Regulations 190-8, Enemy Prisoners of War, Retained Personnel, Civilian Internees and Other Detainees, 1997

DoD Instruction 2310.4, "Repatriation of Prisoners of War (POW), Hostages, Peacetime Government Detainees and Other Missing or Isolated Personnel", 21 November 2000

DoD Instruction 1300.18, "Military Personnel Casualty Matters, Policies, and Procedures", 18 December 2000

DoD Directive 2311.01E, "DoD Law of War Program", 9 May 2006

DoD Directive 2310.01E, "Department of Defence Detainee Program", 5 September 2006.


US Code, Title 18, Chapter 10, Biological Weapons

US Code, Title 22, Chapter 65, Control and Elimination of Chemical and Biological Weapons

US Code, Title 22, Chapter 75, Chemical Weapons Convention Implementation

US Code, Title 18, Chapter 11B, Chemical Weapons

DoD Instruction 5000.2, "Operation of the Defense Acquisition System," 12 May 2003

DoD Directive 3000.3, "Policy for Non-Lethal Weapons", 9 July 1996 (certified current as of 21 November 2003)

Army-Regulation 27-53, Review of the Legality of Weapons under International Law

Protection of the emblems

US Code, Title 18, Chapter 33, Emblems, Insignia, and Names

Geneva Distinctive Emblem Protection Act of 2006, 12 January 2007

Refugee law

See also: Human Rights First, Denial and Delay, The Impact of the Immigration Law’s “Terrorism Bars” on Asylum Seekers and Refugees in the United States, November 2009 (in pdf below)

Useful websites

US Government Printing Office

US Code

DoD Issuances

Army Publishing Directory