Rules of Engagement

Completed in December 2011

This project looked at how to enhance compliance by armed non-state actors with international norms, taking into account the views both of the actors themselves and the experiences of those engaged in dialogue with them.

TEAM

Picture of Annyssa Bellal

Annyssa Bellal

Senior Research Fellow and Strategic Adviser on International Humanitarian Law

Annyssa Bellal's areas of expertise include public international law, international humanitarian law, international human rights law and armed non-state actors.

Picture of Stuart Casey-Maslen

Stuart Casey-Maslen

OUTPUT

The resulting report, Rules of Engagement: Protecting Civilians through Dialogue with Armed Non-State Actors, was published in October 2011 in English, French and Spanish. It proposes ten ‘policy rules’ that notably call for a greater and systematic engagement with ANSAs as well as a clarification of the legal framework applicable to these actors. It also suggests the development of a model international code of conduct to explicitly apply to the behaviour of ANSAs.

This three-year study took into account the feedback of academics, governments, international and non-governmental organizations as well as ANSAs themselves and was cited by the UN Secretary-General in his 2010 Report on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict. The Secretary-General relied on our research findings to explain the different incentives influencing ANSAs to better respect international law.

Publications

Cover of the Rules of Engagement: Protecting Civilians through Dialogue with Armed Non-State Actors

Rules of Engagement: Protecting Civilians through Dialogue with Armed Non-State Actors

October 2011

Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights

Download >

Cover of Règles d'engagement - La protection des civils à travers un dialogue avec les acteurs armés non étatiques

Règles d'engagement - La protection des civils à travers un dialogue avec les acteurs armés non étatiques

October 2011

Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights

Download >

Cover of Reglas del Juego - Cómo Proteger a los Civiles mediante el diálogo con los actores armados no estatales

Reglas del Juego - Cómo proteger a los civiles mediante el diálogo con los actores armados no estatales

October 2011

Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights

Download >

MORE ON THIS THEMATIC AREA

A wide view of the UN Security Council Short Course

Sanctions in Public International Law

25 January - February 2019

This short course provides an introduction to the regime of sanctions under international law and their effectiveness in addressing contemporary forms of conflict. It addresses the questions related to state responsibility, the pacific settlement of international disputes and the role of the International Court of Justice.

Read more

Short Course

The Law of Non-International Armed Conflicts

15- March 2019

This short course discusses the protection offered by international humanitarian law (IHL) in non-international armed conflicts (NIACs) and addresses some problems and controversies specific to IHL of NIACs, including the difficulty to ensure the respect of IHL by armed non-state actors.

Read more

doption of the Arms Trade Treaty by the UN General Assembly, 2 April 2013 Project

The Arms Trade Treaty

Completed in January 2013

The Geneva Academy team followed the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) negotiations and provided key information on the negotiations, notably via a daily blog.

Read more

Séléka rebels patrol in the town of Bria, Central African Republic (CAR). Project

Human Rights Responsibilities and Armed Non-State Actors

Started in June 2018

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.

Read more