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Part II, 6 Rules of Engagement

From: Practitioners' Guide to Human Rights Law in Armed Conflict

Daragh Murray
Edited By: Elizabeth Wilmshurst, Françoise Hampson, Charles Garraway, Noam Lubell, Dapo Akande

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved.date: 09 May 2021

Human rights remedies — Military assistance — Armed conflict, international — Armed conflict, non-international — International crimes — Military matters — Armed forces

This chapter discusses rules of engagement, which regulate the scope of permissible activity in a military operation. While they do not themselves constitute a legal framework, they are an effective means of promoting compliance with legal requirements. Relevant requirements may include international law, the domestic law of the national forces, and, in certain cases such as peace support operations, the law of the host State. In relation to the conduct of hostilities, rules of engagement set out the circumstances in which force may be used, and the level of force that may be applied. Rules of engagement are likely to be formulated based on the applicable legal requirements; political or policy-based factors; and the military and operational requirements of a particular operation. Rules of engagement cannot expand the scope of permissible activity beyond the constraints established by the law, and do not modify the applicable law.

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