ACIL Luncheon: Informers, collaborators and the laws of armed conflict
Dr Shane Darcy of the Irish Centre for Human Rights will present his current book project on ‘Informers, collaborators and the laws of armed conflict’.
The use of informers and other collaborators by parties to an armed conflict has been a constant yet oftentimes concealed practice in wartime. Informers may provide valuable intelligence which assists with military and security operations, while various forms of collaboration, whether military, administrative or economic, can further a number of aims of parties to an armed conflict. Despite the prevalence of such activity during wartime, and the serious and at times fatal consequences that befall those who collaborate with an enemy, international law applicable in times of armed conflict does not squarely address the phenomenon. Informers and other collaborators do not feature explicitly amongst the categories of persons which international humanitarian law formally recognises during armed conflict, and the recruitment, use and treatment of informers and collaborators is addressed only indirectly by this body of law. This paper considers this potential blind spot of international humanitarian law and assesses how recent developments in human rights law and the law of war crimes might be brought to bear in this context.
Dr Shane Darcy is a senior lecturer at the Irish Centre for Human Rights, National University of Ireland Galway, where he teaches and researches on international humanitarian law, international criminal law and business and human rights. His publications include Judges, Law and War; The Judicial Development of International Humanitarian Law (Cambridge University Press, 2014) and Judicial Creativity at the International Criminal Tribunals (Oxford University Press, 2010, co-edited w/Joseph Powderly). He is a member of the Editorial Boards of the Irish Yearbook of International Law and the Business and Human Rights Journal, the Editorial Committee of Criminal Law Forum and the National Board of Amnesty International's Irish Section.
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