Jihad and international humanitarian law : three Moro rebel groups in the Philippines
Soliman M. Santos
Asia-Pacific perspectives on international humanitarian law
Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 2020
This chapter presents the conflict in the Mindanao region of the Southern Philippines, and examines variations in the adherence to jihad or the Islamic law of war and to international humanitarian law (IHL) in the case of three major Moro rebel groups. The three groups are the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF), the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and the so-called Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG). All profess adherence to jihad, but only the MNLF and MILF profess adherence to IHL. One might say that jihad, or Islam as the supreme norm, is a common term of reference between them. In this, however, there are variations, just as there are varied interpretations of Islam itself. These real-life case variations are thus also an occasion to connect to the broader debate on whether or not jihad is consistent with IHL, and to what extent it is consistent or inconsistent. More importantly, this chapter concludes with a synthesis and reflections, and makes recommendations on the implications of this for the broader practical work of constructively engaging these non-State armed groups (NSAGs) through terms of reference which they can accept.
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