The Oxford handbook of international law in armed conflict
Oxford : Oxford University Press, 2014
This Chapter reviews the principles and rules of IHL that apply to land warfare. Those rules that have retained their full relevance-which is the case for most of them-will be highlighted. Equally important, those few rules that deserve to be clarified or rendered more precise or that, in some cases, could justifiably be considered afresh will also be discussed. This review proceeds first by presenting IHL from the perspective of the foot soldier, outlining in detail his or her rights and duties. This emphasizes the fact that compliance with IHL depends first on the conduct of each individual soldier. Of course, in focusing on the individual soldier, it would be wrong to ignore the responsibility of the chain of command. Decisions made by commanders and the high command contrary to the principles of IHL, including the use of prohibited weapons, giving orders that breach humanitarian rules, failure to prevent violations and failing to fulfil duties to train their subordinates, will all be examined in less detail towards the end of the Chapter.
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