This contribution focuses on a series of issues raised by urban warfare, including the definition of the military objectives, defended and non-defended locations, the application of the principle of proportionality, the status and protection of civilians, and the use of long-range artillery fire. In his conclusion, the author argues that, if they remain in the battle space, civilians may be deemed to be directly participating in hostilities and that the only safe way for them to avoid incalculable risks is to vacate an urban locality in the contact zone, unless it is validly declared or agreed upon to be undefended.
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