International law does not explicitly define what a non-international armed conflict is nor is the set of rules applicable or their relationship clearly defined. In particular, there often is a mismatch between political conflict recognition, its factual existence and the application of international humanitarian law (IHL). In addition to vague treaty provisions, divergence in state practice makes the examination of customary law difficult. With the rise of international human rights law (IHRL) as the more protective framework in non-international armed conflict, one could rightly doubt the usefulness of conflict categorization altogether. Recently, the rise of hybrid frameworks fueled the debate on the balance between the military objective in IHL and the legitimate purpose of IHRL. The interplay of political manoeuvring, sovereign law implementation and the theoretically envisaged restriction of power of states though international law is the subject of this paper.