Tag Archives: use of force

20 May 2014

UN report: force ‘almost never used’ by peacekeepers in order to protect civilians

A report of the Office of Internal Oversight Services on the implementation of mandates to protect civilians in United Nations peacekeeping operations found that ‘peacekeeping missions with protection of civilians mandates focus on prevention and mitigation activities and force is almost never used to protect civilians under attack’. (para. 79) (more…)

Source: UNGA | UN Doc A/68/787 | Report on the activities of the Office of Internal Oversight Services | 7 March 2014
Source: Reuters | U.N. study finds peacekeepers avoid using force to protect civilians

2 September 2013

Intervention in Syria and International Law: Inside or Out?

Cross posted on Opinio Juris

States that have decided to potentially engage in military strikes against Syria, or to support such strikes, face a difficult choice between two options: do they operate outside the international legal framework when they act, or do they use the strikes as part of an attempt to reconstruct the law on the use of force?

There is no doubt that in the present situation, military strikes against Syria would be in violation of international law as it has been understood since 1945. In situations as we face now, in the absence of a Security Council mandate, international law allows no unilateral use of force. Building a coalition outside the United Nations does not help. Qualifying strikes as punishment does not help either. (more…)


The Law of International Responsibility and Multilayered Institutional Veils: the Case of Authorized Regional Peace-Enforcement Operations

Jean d'Aspremont

This short article sheds some light on the difficulties inherent in the application of international responsibility mechanisms to situations of authorized regional uses of force. It shows the extent to which the double institutional veil that characterizes these situations comes … Read more

28 June 2012

Cyber warfare: some questions of shared responsibility

During the past weeks several reports have emerged revealing details on one of the gravest cyber-attacks that have taken place, the Flame malware. It has been suggested that Flame has been co-sponsored by the same State or States that had launched Stuxnet, even though the head of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) of the UN has stated that this is mere speculation, Stuxnet being the virus that had targeted the Iranian nuclear programme. Flame has been used to attack computers and network systems across the Middle East. The malware exploited a flaw in the Windows operating system in order to map and monitor the targeted computers. The situation provoked a reaction by the ITU, which stressed the need for co-operation among states in addressing the problems arising out of the growing use of networks to infiltrate and cause damage to systems across the world. (more…)