The status of private military contractors under international humanitarian law
Host item entries:
Denver journal of international law and policy, Vol. 38, no. 3, Summer 2010, p. 361-419
This article attempts to characterize the status of civilian military contractors under IHL, which has traditionally governed the conduct of armed conflict where the status of all parties to the conflict is clearly defined, and identify appropriate IHL standards that could be used for the regulation of civilian military contractors. It argues and properly assumes that the most pertinent body of law is IHL because the very existence of the private military industry is inextricably linked to the existence of the threat and use of military force; in other words, the existence of war. It further contends, therefore, that identification of the exact legal status under IHL of all the players is an essential step in understanding and regulating their future role.