The Handbook of International Humanitarian Law (3rd edition)

Dieter Fleck
Pub date
Aug 2013
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This fully updated third edition of The Handbook of International Humanitarian Law sets out an international manual of humanitarian law accompanied by case analysis and extensive explanatory commentary by a team of distinguished and internationally renowned experts. The new edition takes account of recent developments in the law, including the 2010 amendments to the ICC Statute, the progressive evolution of customary law, and new jurisprudence from national and international courts and tribunals. It sheds light on controversial topics like direct participation in hostilities; air and missile warfare; belligerent occupation; operational detention; and the protection of the environment in armed conflict. The book also addresses the growing need to consider the interface between international humanitarian law and human rights, as well as other branches of international law, both during armed conflicts and in post-conflict situations. The commentary both deepens reflection on such innovations, and critically reconsiders views expressed in earlier editions to provide a contemporary analysis of this changing field. Renowned international lawyers offer a broad spectrum of legal opinions, restating the law in this area, which is applicable worldwide. Particular attention is paid to problems of application of the law in recent military campaigns, which are assessed and interpreted in a practice-oriented manner. Based on best-practice rules of global importance, this book gives invaluable guidance to practitioners and scholars of this important body of law.


1. Historical Development and Legal Basis
2. Scope of Application of International Humanitarian Law
3. Combatants and Non-Combatants
4. Means and Methods of Combat
5. Protection of the Civilian Population
6. Protection of the Wounded, Sick, and Shipwrecked
7. Protection of Prisoners in Armed Conflict
8. Protection of Religious Personnel
9. Protection of Cultural Property
10. The Law of Armed Conflict at Sea
11. The Law of Neutrality
12. The Law of Non-International Armed Conflict
13. The Law of International Peace Operations
14. Implementation and Enforcement of International Humanitarian Law

About the author: 

Dieter Fleck, Dr.iur. (Cologne), is the Former Director International Agreements and Policy, Federal Ministry of Defence, Germany; Honorary President of the International Society for Military Law and the Law of War; Member of the Advisory Board of the Amsterdam Center for International Law (ACIL); former Chairman of the Committee on Arms Control and Disarmament Law of the International Law Association, and Rapporteur of its new Committee on Nuclear Weapons, Non-proliferation and Contemporary International Law. He is the author of publications on the law of peace and security, international humanitarian law, and the law of visiting forces.

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