ALMA Newsletter - December 2019


Dear Friends,

Welcome to our December 2019 newsletter. As we approach the end of 2019, we look forward towards a fresh new decade. In 2020, ALMA will be celebrating a very important milestone - our ten year anniversary!

Recently we have concluded the 13th National IHL competition for university students in Israel. I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the winning team from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Ms. Adaya Kisos, Ms. Tal Spector Gross, and Ms. Marina Riveline, and wish them good luck in the upcoming Pictet 2020 competition. A special acknowledgment goes also to the winner of the Uriel Masad Best Speaker Award - Ms. Daria Chill from Bar-Ilan University.

We at ALMA wish you a happy holiday season and a very fruitful and interesting 2020.

As always, you are welcome to keep in touch via our Facebook page and twitter. In order to subscribe to our mailing list please click here

Best regards

Ido Rosenzweig

ALMA Chairman

13th National IHL Competition for Students

Between October 27th and 31st the 13th National Competition for university students in Israel was held by the ICRC and ALMA. Eight teams from four academic institutions participated in the competition (The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the College of Management, Tel-Aviv University, Bar Ilan University).

The winners of the 11th National IHL Competition: Ms. Adaya Kisos, MS. Tal Spector Gross, and Ms. Marina Riveline of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

The finalist team (the runners up): Ms. Roni Sobol, Mr. Uriel Shem Tov, and Ms. Danielle Regev from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

The winner of the Uriel Masad Best Speaker Award: Ms. Daria Chill from Bar-Ilan University.

ALMA would like to congratulate all participating teams and thank the judges: Ms. Sareta Asraph, Ms. Nishat Nishat, Ms. Liv Halperin, and Mr. Nimrod Karin.

Calls for Papers and Opportunities

1) The Minerva Center for the Study of the Rule of Law under Extreme Conditions at the University of Haifa (Faculty of Law and the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies), invites proposals for research activities. Proposals should be submitted by February 7, 2020 to: Dr. Michal Ben Gal, Minerva Center Research Coordinator

2) Helton Fellowship Program: Helton Fellowships provide financial assistance in the form of "micro-grants" for law students and young professionals to pursue field work and research on significant issues involving international law, human rights, humanitarian affairs, and related areas. All applications must be submitted by 27 January, 2020.

3) Call for Papers: Conference on ‘Dynamics and Legal Challenges in Armed Conflict in the DRC’. The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is among the states that have experienced the greatest devastation, as a result of multiple armed conflicts, in the post-World War II era. The organizers welcome submissions of abstracts from scholars across relevant disciplines that engage with the dynamics and legal challenges related to the armed conflict situation in the DRC. The conference will take place at the University of Johannesburg in South Africa from 2 to 3 April 2020. Abstracts of no more than 500 words should be submitted to Dr Martie Bradley at by 15 December 2019.

4) Call for Applications: “Women in Peace and Security” Fellowship. Are you an expert on issues related to gender, peace and security who enjoys engaging with policymakers? Are you looking to take on a new challenge? The GCSP’s Global Fellowship Initiative (GFI) is offering a fully-funded six-month fellowship, sponsored by the U.S. Mission to the UN and other International Organizations in Geneva, to build your knowledge, skills and network within an inspiring, multidisciplinary and multicultural environment! Application is open until 15 December 2019.

IHL Articles and Media

1) Jonathan Matkowsky, Israel's Attack on Hamas' Cyber Headquarters Under Customary International Humanitarian Law (SANS)

2) Sandra Krähenmann and Paulien Vandendriessche, From child soldier to child ‘terrorist’: safeguarding innocence from counter-terrorism (BLOG.ICRC)

3) Charlie Dunlap J.D., No, the “laws of war” are not “history” (LawFire)

4) John Phipps, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and the Cruel Realities of White Phosphorous (IGN)

5) Dennis Schmidt, Turkey’s Syria Invasion: German Research Report Says Illegal on All Counts (Just Security)

6) Inbar Levy and Tomer Broude, Outcome Bias and Expertise in Investigations under International Humanitarian Law (SSRN)

7) Maaike Beenes, The Slippery Slope to Autonomous Killing Machines (IPS)

8) Alexander Lopez, Army official hits CPP-NPA's continued recruitment of minors (GOV.PH)

9) Alonso Gurmendi, The Chapultepechian De-Grotianization of Jus ad Bellum (Opinio Juris)

10) Alex MacDonald, UK admits to providing training to Saudis on internal security (Middle East Eye)

11) Shireen Daft, Dogs of war: are military dogs war heroes or just tools? It’s time the law protected our furry troops (TheConversation)

12) Toby Walsh, Robots can outwit us on the virtual battlefield, so let’s not put them in charge of the real thing (TheConversation)

13) Alessandra Spadaro, Caught in the crossfire: responsibilities for ISIS members detained in North East Syria following Turkey’s Operation Peace Spring – Part I (Armed Groups and International Law)

14) Rashad Aslam, The law of war and its Uncertainties (Modern Diplomacy)

15) Dapo Akande and Emanuela Gillard, Conflict-Induced Food Insecurity and the War Crime of Starvation of Civilians As a Method of Warfare (BSG Working Paper Series)

16) Guidelines to facilitate the use and admissibility as evidence in national criminal courts of information collected, handled, preserved and shared by the military to prosecute terrorist offences (CTED)

Local Upcoming IHL Events

1) Don’t Forget the Geneva Conventions: Achieving Responsible business Conduct in conflict zones Through Adherence to International Humanitarian Law: This seminar examines the question of how a business operating in a conflict-affected area can uphold human rights. It contends that a crucial, yet often overlooked element, is a business’ commitment to embedding the fundamental standards of IHL (as distinct from human rights laws) into its internal policies and operational practices. Minerva Center for the Rule of Law under Extreme Conditions Faculty of Law and Department of Geography and Environmental Studies, University of Haifa, Israel, 11 December 2019.

2) Frontier Incidents as Armed Attacks: This research aims to suggest a compromise between existing approaches. Its starting point is that, while some frontier incidents are minor and negligent, others may very well constitute an armed attack. Moreover, frontier incidents can take different forms, many of which are not often considered frontier incidents, yet can nevertheless challenge the Nicaragua exclusion. Minerva Center for the Rule of Law under Extreme Conditions Faculty of Law and Department of Geography and Environmental Studies, University of Haifa, Israel, 11 December 2019

3) Subterranean Challenges in War and Peace: An international conference on Subterranean Challenges in War and Peace and the Inaugural Meeting of the International Working Group on Subterranean Warfare. IDC Herzliya, 15-17 December 2019.

Upcoming IHL Events - Worldwide

1) Investigating Violations of International Humanitarian Law: Law, Policy and Good Practice: this event will serve to present and discuss the Guidelines on Investigating Violations of International Humanitarian Law: Law, Policy, and Good Practice. The document addresses the different types of investigations and the international principles and standards necessary for an effective investigation in armed conflict. Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights and the International Committee of the Red Cross, Geneva, Switzerland, 11 December 2019.

2) Non-State Armed Groups and IHL: A side event at the 33rd International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent, co-organized by the Geneva Academy and Geneva Call, will offer the opportunity to present a research project that aims to increase our understanding of NSAGs’ behaviours in conflict settings in order to strengthen respect for IHL. International Conference Centre Geneva (CICG), Geneva, Switzerland, 12 December 2019.

3) Online Course - International Humanitarian Law: This law course deals with underlying principles governing armed conflicts. It will enable a careful evaluation of the various rules intended to protect victims, such as civilians and prisoners of war, as well as wounded and sick during armed conflict. This course provides essential knowledge and skills for academics and practitioners who wish to specialise in this field. Collaborating Centre for Oxford University and CUHK for Disaster and Medical Humanitarian Response CCOUC, 31 December 2019.

4) Short Course: The Classification of Armed Conflicts: this course aims to strengthen understanding of the underlying shared principles and frameworks of protection in humanitarian response, as well as how the different conceptions of protection are implemented in practice by organizations operating in this space.. Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights, Geneva, Switzerland, 31 December 2019 - 14 February 2020.

For information about more IHL events from all over the world, please visit our Upcoming IHL Events webpage