The Time has Come for the United States to Ratify Geneva Protocol I*

Theodor Meron

in War Crimes Law Comes of Age

Published in print January 1999 | ISBN: 9780198268567
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191683534 | DOI:
The Time has Come for the United States to Ratify Geneva Protocol I*

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At the conclusion of a diplomatic conference convened by Switzerland as depositary of the four Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 for the protection of war victims, two Protocols Additional to the Geneva Conventions were adopted. The first Protocol concerned international wars; the second addressed civil wars. The United States signed both Protocols. In the belief that any problems could be corrected by understandings or reservations, it proceeded to negotiate statements of understanding and reservations with its NATO allies. However, because of fears that Protocol I would legitimize the claims of the Palestine Liberation Organization to prisoner-of-war privileges for its combatants and promote various liberation movements to state or quasi-state status, the Protocol attracted vigorous opposition in the United States and Israel. This chapter discusses Protocol I and argues for an objective and credible military review of the Protocol.

Keywords: Protocol I; international wars; prisoner; humanitarianism

Chapter.  5312 words. 

Subjects: Public International Law

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