[Online HILAC lecture] International humanitarian law and non-state actors

03 November 2020
  • Starts at: 18:00h
  • Fee: Free
  • Venue: Online
  • Organiser: HILAC and Asser Press


Watch a recording of this HILAC lecture here

In recent times, international armed conflicts have declined in frequency, while non-international armed conflicts have increased and are now consistently in the majority. From armed conflicts in Syria to those of the Sahel region, Yemen, Ukraine, Colombia and Afghanistan, international humanitarian law (IHL) has long recognized the roles that multiple non-state actors play (such as non-State armed groups, individuals, the UN through its different agencies, the ICRC, humanitarian NGOs and human rights bodies) through interactions among themselves and with States on a daily basis and for a myriad of different reasons.

Ezequiel Heffes, Marcos D. Kotlik and Manuel J. Ventura explored some of these interactions in their co-edited volume International Humanitarian Law and Non-State Actors (Asser Press). In the presence of the editors and some of the book’s authors, this HILAC lecture was an occasion to celebrate the publication of their book. We discussed real-life challenges presented by non-state actors in conflict settings, and how (and to what extent) we can address them to affect the resolution of practical and theoretical problems in the realm of IHL.

About the authors

Ezequiel Heffes, LLM, is a Thematic legal adviser in the Policy and Legal Unit at Geneva Call in Geneva, Switzerland. Marcos D. Kotlik, LLM, is Academic coordinator at the Observatory of International Humanitarian Law of the University of Buenos Aires, School of Law, and a PhD Candidate at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies. Manuel J. Ventura, LLM (Hons), is an Associate legal officer in the Office of the Prosecutor at the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals, an Adjunct Fellow at the School of Law at Western Sydney University, and a Director of The Peace and Justice Initiative.


- Ezequiel Heffes, co-editor of the book, Thematic legal adviser at Geneva Call;

- Yasmin Naqvi, co-author of one of the chapters, Special adviser to the Deputy Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OCPW);

- Marco Sassòli, Professor of International Law at the University of Geneva, former director of the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights;

- Tilman Rodenhäuser, Thematic legal adviser at the International Committee of the Red Cross. 

Rebecca Mignot-Mahdavi, Researcher in international law at the T.M.C. Asser Instituut moderated the event.