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Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law [MPEPIL]

Militias

Julia Gebhard

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2015. All Rights Reserved.date: 20 July 2019

Subject(s):
Armed forces — Paramilitary groups — National liberation movements — Prisoners of war — Armed conflict — Warfare, land — Combatants, unlawful — Geneva Conventions 1949

Published under the auspices of the Max Planck Foundation for International Peace and the Rule of Law under the direction of Rüdiger Wolfrum.

1 A militia is a military or paramilitary unit or group, which is not composed of professional soldiers but of regular citizens who are trained for their military duty in cases of emergency or as reserve forces to support regular troops. Militias are often not part of a State’s regular armed forces but may play a supplementary role. 2 The term ‘militia’ is used in international humanitarian treaties even though these instruments lack a clear definition of what constitutes a militia, which may open the term to a subjective interpretation by parties to a conflict...
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