Many human rights abuses are committed by armed groups. I would be misguided, however, to state that, in so doing, armed groups violate international human rights law. In case they do not exercise power over individuals in a state-like fashion, quite clearly, the abuses they may have committed should be addressed by the criminal law. Yet also in case they do exercise such power, it is problematic to assert that armed groups incur liability under international human rights law. This will in fact only be the case if armed groups consent to be bound by human rights law. Nonetheless, even if they do not give their consent, they still remain "subject to the demand of the international community", which may take them to task if they fail to comply with human rights norms.
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