Protection of civilians during armed conflict in islamic law
Walusimbi Abdul Hafiz
Host item entries:
Uganda's paper series on international humanitarian law, Vol. 1, No. 1, August 2013, p. 135-156
Photocopies. - Bibliographie : p.155-156
As nations strive to ensure precautionary measures against terrorist activities, some Muslim clerics have come out to defend indiscriminate attacks as a legitimate means against forces that are at war with Muslim states. This has led to a misconception of the Islamic standpoint on protection of civilians during an armed conflict. Peaceful co-existence is the ideal situation under Islamic domestic and international relations. War in Islam is described as a burden whose legality is only as a last resort undertaken as a necessity, and whose pursuance must incorporate mandatory measures, before, during and after armed conflict to protect non-combatants from the ruins of war. This article presents the concept of Islamic humanitarian rules with their related provisions of the International Humanitarian Law. It explains the protection of civilians under Islamic law, and refutes the justifications for indiscriminate attack by suicide attacks. It finally ends with recommendations towards a more practical than theoretical emphasis on protection of civilians during armed conflict as understood under Islam.