|Title||The anatomy of the war crimeof attacking peacekeepersunder internationalhumanitarian law andinternational criminal law|
This thesis is concerned with the analysis of the war crime of attacking peacekeeping missions under international humanitarian law and international criminal law. The Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court criminalises “(…) intentionally directing attacks against personnel, installations, material, units or vehicles involved in a humanitarian assistance or peacekeeping mission in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations, as long as they are entitled to the protection given to civilians or civilian objects under the international law of armed conflict”. However, the exact scope of application of this war crime is unclear and controversial due to the overlap of three different fields of international law: international criminal law, international humanitarian law and United Nations law. These distinct bodies of law have their own principles, objectives and logic and might not necessarily be in perfect harmony with each other at this particular point. Major complexities linked to it include the definition of a peacekeeping mission in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations, the status of peacekeeping personnel and objects under international humanitarian law, and the scope of peacekeepers’ right to self-defence. The central research question that this thesis addresses is about the compatibility of this war crime with the system of international law. This is answered in the affirmative.
The contribution to knowledge that this thesis offers relates to critical studies on international criminal law, international humanitarian law and the United Nations system. The thesis clarifies the scope of application of the war crime of attacking personnel and objects involved in a peacekeeping mission in accordance with the United Nations Charter. This is the first comprehensive analysis of the overlap of legal regimes with respect to this war crime, which can assist courts in application of the rules relating to the protection of peacekeeping missions.