ICRC’s “How Does Law Protect in War?” available online

About the author(s):

Rogier Bartels

Rogier is a researcher at the Netherlands Defence Academy (NLDA) and works at the Dutch National Prosecutor’s Office. He holds LL.M-degrees from Utrecht University and the University of Nottingham. Before taking up his current positions, he was an associate legal officer in Chambers at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, and a legal adviser at the International Humanitarian Law Division of the Netherlands Red Cross.

Rogier is an adjunct-lecturer at the Hague University of Applied Sciences, where he teaches international humanitarian law, and he co-convenes the Hague Initiative for Law and Armed Conflict.

The ICRC reports that its core publication on teaching international humanitarian law (IHL), How Does Law Protect in War? Cases, Documents and Teaching Materials on Contemporary Practice in International Humanitarian Law (by Marco Sassòli, Antoine A. Bouvier and Anne Quintin) is now available (for free) online, providing academics, researchers and students with a wealth of updated resources, cases and references, in a user-friendly format.

Users will find three main sections through which they can easily navigate. “The Law” presents IHL carefully and systematically, outlining each topic and referring readers to the pertinent parts of “Cases and Documents,” to articles from the Geneva Conventions and their Additional Protocols, and to the rules set out in the ICRC Study on Customary IHL. Selected bibliographies facilitate further study and a deeper understanding of each topic. Many of the articles mentioned are available through the ICRC’s library.

“Pedagogical resources” offers recommendations on how to teach IHL, and a series of useful course outlines for university professors in the fields of law, journalism and political science.

The book itself was in fact already available online (through the ICRC and the American Department of Defence), but the novelty of the online platform resides in its easy navigation, through hyperlinks, from legal theory to humanitarian practice. New case studies on emerging humanitarian and legal issues will be regularly added, supplying professors with up-to-date teaching materials. A search engine and an extensive index will also permit users to perform quick searches using key words.

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