While conventional warfare has an established body of legal precedence, the legality of drone strikes by the United States in Pakistan and elsewhere remains ambiguous. This book explores the legal and political issues surrounding the use of drones in Pakistan. Drawing from international treaty law, customary international law, and statistical data on the impact of the strikes, Sikander Ahmed Shah asks whether drone strikes by the United States in Pakistan are in compliance with international humanitarian law. The book questions how international law views the giving of consent between States for military action, and explores what this means for the interaction between sovereignty and consent.
The book goes on to look at the socio-political realities of drone strikes in Pakistan, scrutinizing the impact of drone strikes on both Pakistani politics and US-Pakistan relationships. Topics include the Pakistan army-government relationship, the evolution of international institutions as a result of drone strikes, and the geopolitical dynamics affecting the region.
As a detailed and critical examination of the legal and political challenges presented by drone strikes, this book will be essential to scholars and students of the law of armed conflict, security studies, political science and international relations.
'This is an important book. As well as evaluating the illegality of the use of drones in Pakistan, Shah highlights the dangers of facilitating military intervention without consequences, whilst also bringing to the forefront the forgotten voices in this debate, the victims – whose voices have only recently been heard through improved political interest and strategic litigation.'
Clive Stafford Smith OBE, founder and Director of Reprieve.
'Shah has made a timely contribution to the debate on drones and international law, which is novel in its critical perspective but, more so, in its desire to highlight drones not simply as a question touching pure doctrinal law, but one with deep human, political and social implications. It is in that area that the strengths of the book lie. I would recommend this book to international lawyers dealing with armed con?ict gen-erally but also to critical and Third World Approaches to International Law scholars grappling with questions of international governance and power.'
Max Byrne, University of Reading School of Law, Journal of Conflict and Security Law
1. Legality of Drone Strikes 2. Consent and Territorial Sovereignty 3. Drones and Compliance with Human Rights Law 4. Drones Strikes and Compliance with International Humanitarian Law 5. The Social and Political Impact of Drones in Pakistan 6. Conclusion