“Assassination” has acquired the lineage of a term of art since the very origins of today’s laws of armed conflict. Its practice was abhorred by States and early codifications of the laws of war show that it was deemed unlawful under the law of nations as a matter of custom. Its exact contours, nonetheless, have always been blurred and no agreed upon definition of the forbidden conduct is anywhere to be found under international law. The sudden rise, in recent years, of pre-meditated killings of pre-selected individuals as a method of warfare opens the question of whether such conduct fully complies with the norms of international law applicable in times of armed conflict. Hence, the question underlying the present research: may the customary prohibition of assassination still play a critical role in the conduct of hostilities? Taking steps from these considerations, this work explores in its first part the historical roots of the prohibition of assassination in order to identify the reasons that led to its outlawing and thus better clarify its scope, also establishing a parallelism with the recently introduced notion of targeted killing. The second section takes into account the laws of armed conflict traditionally associated with the prohibition of assassination as well as relevant provisions belonging to the legal regime of international human rights law, in an attempt to explore their systemic integration and its impact on the notion of assassination. The third and final part of the work is devoted to an analysis of state practice and its comparison with the theoretical conclusions reached in the previous section. A rigorous interpretation of the relevant laws of armed conflicts augmented by proper reference to human rights law makes it possible to identify a silver lining leading to a refinement of the notion of wartime assassination and, with it, to an enhanced pro persona approach strictly limiting the possibility to resort to pre-meditated lethal force against pre-selected individuals also in times of armed conflict. However, such theory seems to partly clash with an ever-increasing trend in State practice, where resort to techniques of targeted killing has constantly been on the rise in these last years.
|Data di pubblicazione:||16-set-2016|
|Titolo:||Assassination and Targeted Killing in Times of Armed Conflict: A Clash of Theory and Practice|
|Settore Scientifico Disciplinare:||IUS/13 - DIRITTO INTERNAZIONALE|
|Corso di dottorato:||SCUOLA DI DOTTORATO IN SCIENZE GIURIDICHE - 71R|
|Citazione:||(2016). Assassination and Targeted Killing in Times of Armed Conflict: A Clash of Theory and Practice. (Tesi di dottorato, Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca, 2016).|
|Parole Chiave (Inglese):||Assassination Targeted; Killing|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||07 - Tesi di dottorato Bicocca post 2009|