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Part II Predominant Security Challenges and International Law, Human Security, Ch.24 States and Non-State Actors and Human Security

Markos Karavias

From: The Oxford Handbook of the International Law of Global Security

Edited By: Robin Geiß, Nils Melzer

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2023. All Rights Reserved.date: 25 May 2024

Human rights — Use of force, war, peace and neutrality

This chapter examines the role of States and non-State actors in guaranteeing human security. ‘Human security’ as a concept may be seen as methodologically over-inclusive. After all, threats to collective or international security, such as inter-State use of military force, necessarily imperil the security of individuals. For the purposes of the chapter, threats to ‘human security’ are understood as threats to the fundamental human rights of individuals. It is posited that international practice has recognized the interlinking—and potential causal—pathways between gross violations of human rights and threats to international peace. The chapter discusses the traditional dual role of States, as violators and guarantors of human rights. Security offered by States to individuals within their territory is crucial in terms of attaining security at an international level. Indeed, lack of security within the boundaries of a State can have debilitating effects on regional or international peace. The chapter then assesses whether non-State actors can assume a corresponding dual role, looking into the role of multinational enterprises, de facto regimes, and clans through the lens of international human rights and refugee law. Finally, it reframes the category of ‘non-State actors’ more generally and posits that these actors may not be all that detached or different from States in the first place.

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