Afghanistan has been affected by conflicts for decades. Supported by the United States, the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) had fought against the Taliban and the Khorasan province branch of the Islamic State group (IS-KP). In August 2021, following the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan, the Taliban have rapidly taken control of most of the country, Kabul included.
The entry of our Rule of Law in Armed Conflict (RULAC) online portal on these NIACs provides a detailed analysis of these conflicts, including information about parties, classification and applicable international law. It has been updated to include recent developments, including the current peace talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban.
Since 6 August 2021, the Taliban have advanced rapidly: Afghan provinces fall one by one, until the armed group reached Kabul on 16 August. President Ashraf Ghani immediately fled the country and a few hours later the Taliban entered the Presidential palace. On 17 August, Taliban spokesperson held the first press conference, where he affirmed that they ‘don’t want any internal or external enemies’ and that they ‘wished for peaceful relations with other countries.’
It is worth recalling that this does not imply that international humanitarian law (IHL) ceases to be applicable. As specified by the ICRC ‘a lasting cessation of armed confrontations without real risk of resumption will undoubtedly constitute the end of a non-international armed conflict as it would equate to a peaceful settlement of the conflict, even without the conclusion or unilateral pronouncement of a formal act such as a ceasefire, armistice or peace agreement.’ It is therefore too premature to conclude that the NIAC is over, explains Dr Chiara Redaelli, Research Fellow at the Geneva Academy.
The survey aims at improving this unique tool by collecting users’ feedbacks on its content, their use of the information provided on RULAC, and the sections consulted.
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In her winning essay Digital Safe Havens: Sheltering Civilians From Military Cyber Operations, Isabelle Peart brings forward novel suggestions on how to reduce the risk of harm to civilians posed by military cyber operations.
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This online IHL talk aims at shining light on some of the many legal, political and protection-related challenges stemming from the situation in Afghanistan.
Dr Helen Durham, Director of International Law and Policy at the ICRC, will address the legal, operational and political imperative of the international community continuing to work towards the application and implementation of IHL.
This short course, which can be followed in Geneva or online, looks at the sources from which public international law rules stem and at the entities that are empowered with the capacity of law-making in the international legal order. It aims at enabling participants to develop a global perception of the international normative system.
This short course, which can be followed in Geneva or online, examines the conduct of hostilities in situations of international armed conflict, also known as the Law of The Hague.
This research aims at building a common understanding and vision as to how states and the relevant parts of the UN system can provide a concrete and practical framework to address human rights responsibilities of armed non-state actors.
The Rule of Law in Armed Conflicts project (RULAC) is a unique online portal that identifies and classifies all situations of armed violence that amount to an armed conflict under international humanitarian law (IHL). It is primarily a legal reference source for a broad audience, including non-specialists, interested in issues surrounding the classification of armed conflicts under IHL.