Marco Sassòli Focuses in his new IHL Book on Controversies, Solutions and the Challenges Faced when implementing the Law

28 March 2019

In his new book published by Elgar International Humanitarian Law: Rules, Controversies, and Solutions to Problems Arising in Warfare Professor Marco Sassòli focuses on controversial issues and on the challenges facing the implementation of international humanitarian law (IHL) in practice.

The 600-pages book discusses when IHL applies, its substantive rules, how to ensure its respect and whether the traditional distinction between international and non-international armed conflicts remains relevant.

Cross-Cutting Issues, Non-State Armed Groups and Interaction with Other Branches of International Law

The book also examines how IHL rules interact with other branches of international law such as international human rights law and international criminal law, rules that apply to non-State armed groups, as well as cross-cutting issues like terrorism, autonomous weapons, cyber warfare, gender and cultural heritage.

Marco Sassòli, the Director of the Geneva Academy, says: ‘I wanted not just to describe the rules, but also how they are still relevant and can be applied in today’s armed conflicts, which controversies exist in my view in good faith and which are irrelevant or pursued in bad faith.’

A Reference for Scholars, Students, Practitioners and Civil Servants

The comprehensive nature of the book, its focus on practical challenges and cross-cutting issues makes it a reference for those working on issues related to the application of international law in armed conflict.

‘I wanted to offer my students at the Geneva Academy all the theoretical background and information they need, to allow us to focus in my courses on the discussion of how the law can be applied to cases taken from contemporary practice in armed conflicts’ explains Professor Sassòli.

‘Professor Sassòli has combined his first-hand experience of the challenges facing the application of IHL with his scholarly understanding of international law. He sets out the details necessary for a complete understanding of humanitarian law but also highlights the contemporary controversies. One of the many qualities of this book is that the author always offers us his considered view on what are the best solutions to the dilemmas he highlights. This book is destined to become an authoritative point of reference for generations to come’ underlines Andrew Clapham, Professor of International Law at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies.

Launch at the 2019 ASIL Annual Meeting

The book will be launched on 28 March at the 2019 Annual Meeting of the American Society of International Law (ASIL) in Washington D.C.

A discussion around the book with IHL scholars and practitioners will also be organized at the Geneva Academy in May 2019.

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