chapter  1
45 Pages

The right not to be displaced by armed conflict under international law

ByElena Katselli Proukaki

Forcible displacement because of armed conflict as well as gross human rights violations continues to present compelling legal challenges despite the catastrophic effects that such dislocation has on its victims. This is despite the significant advancements that international law has admittedly gone through especially post-WWII and as evident from the growing number of those forcibly uprooted from their homes and lands. This chapter shows that the existing international legal standards have proved inadequate and too fragmented to provide effective protection against displacement. This is particularly so since there has been little attention to the existence of a fundamental right to be protected from displacement in these circumstances. This chapter fills this gap by bringing together international humanitarian, human rights and criminal law and by critically evaluating state practice and opiniojuris. Through this inquiry, the chapter establishes that contemporary international law recognises an individual right not to be displaced, the significance of which lies both in the negative and positive obligations that states are burdened with and in the empowerment that such recognition carries for the individual.