War, Peace, Human Rights and International Law
Course Code: PUBLG089
Course Tutor: Dr Tom Dannenbaum (Department of Political Science)
Assessment: One 3,000 word essay
Credit Value: 15
About this course
This course introduces and examines the key themes at the juncture of war, peace and human rights. At its core is the interplay between these issues in the relevant domains of international law: the law on the use of force (the jus ad bellum), human rights law, humanitarian law (the jus in bello), and international criminal law. The themes in the course include, the prohibition of war in international relations, the exceptions to that prohibition, namely self defence and the debated doctrine of humanitarian intervention, the rules and principles on the conduct of hostilities related to the protection of combatants and civilians, principles and practice of UN action in the fields of peace-enforcement and peace-building, and the role of human rights concerns in these debates.
The topics will be discussed with reference to key texts in international law literature, existing institutional arrangements at the United Nations and contemporary cases.
By the end of the course, students will:
•Have a grasp of the key normative debates on war, peace and human rights.
•Understand the legal framework for regulating armed conflict, peace enforcement and peace-building.
•Appreciate the challenges to the existing normative framework posed by the changing nature of armed conflict and threats to international peace and security.