War, Conflict and Human Rights: Theory and practice, 2nd Edition (Paperback) book cover

War, Conflict and Human Rights

Theory and practice, 2nd Edition

By Chandra Lekha Sriram, Olga Martin-Ortega, Johanna Herman

© 2014 – Routledge

272 pages

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About the Book

War, Conflict and Human Rights is an innovative, interdisciplinary textbook combining aspects of law, politics, and conflict analysis to examine the relationship between human rights and armed conflict.

This second edition has been revised and updated, making use of both theoretical and practical approaches. Over the course of the book, the authors:

    • examine the tensions and complementarities between protection of human rights and resolution of conflict, including the competing political demands and the challenges posed by internal armed conflict;
    • analyse the different obligations and legal regimes applicable to state and non-state actors, including non-state armed groups, corporations and private military and security companies;
    • explore the scope and effects of human rights violations in contemporary armed conflicts, such as those in Sierra Leone, Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and the former Yugoslavia, and implications for the "Arab Spring";
    • assess the legal and institutional accountability mechanisms developed in the wake of armed conflict to punish violations of human rights law, and international humanitarian law such as the ad hoc tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, and the International Criminal Court;
    • discuss continuing and emergent global trends and challenges in the fields of human rights and conflict analysis.

This volume will be essential reading for students of war and conflict studies, human rights, and international humanitarian law, and highly recommended for students of conflict resolution, peacebuilding, international security and international relations, generally.


‘What makes this book such a superb teaching tool? The text begins by providing separate background chapters on human rights and conflict studies. This makes the case studies and topical chapters completely accessible for a wide range of students. Clearly written and completely up-to-date, War, Conflict and Human Rights will undoubtedly find itself on the mandatory reading list of many syllabi.’ - Julie Mertus, American University, USA

‘[the authors] have tackled the most perplexing issues of humanitarian protection and conflict resolution, clarified the hard choices and explored their implications in probing case studies. They demonstrate that the tools now available to promote human rights, though far from adequate, can make a positive difference when they are mobilized vigorously and authentically, respecting both shared rights and legitimate differences.’ - Michael Doyle, Columbia University, USA

This indispensable volume, useful for both teaching and research, navigates a path around the pitfalls inherent in the age-old conceptual struggle between peace and justice. In doing so it details a sophisticated agenda for conflict resolution and peacebuilding, through international humanitarian and human rights law, for the ultimate goal of conflict prevention.’ - Oliver Richmond, University of Manchester, UK

‘Thoughtfully designed and utterly thought-provoking, this interdisciplinary text draws on law, the humanities, and politics in relation to conflict management. In so doing, the authors offer a sorely needed practical and theoretical approach to the intricately layered legal and political relationships embedded in armed conflict and the actions taken to prevent, intervene, mediate, or account for the often resulting massive human toll.’ - Human Rights Quarterly

Table of Contents

Part 1: War and Human Rights: Critical Issues 1. The Interplay Between War and Human Rights 2. Conflict: Fundamentals and Debates 3. Human Rights: History and Debates 4. Humanitarian and Human Rights Law in Armed Conflict 5. Nonstate Actors and International Humanitarian and International Human Rights Law Part 2: Contemporary Conflict: Critical Cases 6. The Former Yugoslavia 7. Sierra Leone 8. The Democratic Republic of Congo 9. Sudan Part 3: Building Peace and Seeking Accountability: Recent Mechanisms and Institutions 10. Ad Hoc Tribunals 11. Enforcing Human Rights Transnationally 12. Hybrid Tribunals 13. The International Criminal Court 14. Enduring and Emergent Challenges and Opportunities

About the Authors

Chandra Lekha Sriram is Professor of International Law and International Relations, the University of East London, UK.

Olga Martin-Ortega is Reader in Public International Law, the University of Greenwich, UK.

Johanna Herman is a Research Fellow, Centre on Human Rights in Conflict, the University of East London, UK.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / Military / General
LAW / International
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Political Freedom & Security / International Security
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Political Freedom & Security / Human Rights