Situations of hostility between States and armed groups located on the territories of other States are difficult to classify because they call into question the categories of international and non-international armed conflicts. This contribution argues for the single classification of non-international armed conflicts of those transnational armed conflicts. The article starts with a clarification on the relevant circumstances for the contribution. The different classifications proposed by scholars, tribunals and States are then examined, leading us to our arguments for a single classification of non-international armed conflicts, and to the test adopted for a rapid categorization of those transnational hostilities. Finally, we mention some important observations and challenges on this topic, like the classification of situations involving at the same time hostilities between a State and an armed group located on the territory of another State and the occupation of the territory of this second State.
Milanovic and Hadzi-Vidanovicsupra note 2 at 267–272; Kritsiotis supra note 2 at 268–270; E. David Principes de droit des conflits armés (2012) at 118.
Milanovic and Hadzi-Vidanovicsupra note 2 at 303–304; Sivakumaran supra note 11 at 228–229.
Milanovic and Hadzi-Vidanovicsupra note 2 at 274.
See for instance also Cornsupra note 8 at 307 313–314.
Since2014the United States as well as other States has intervened in Iraq and Syria against the Islamic State mainly through airstrikes. For instance on 18. August 2015 the United States killed a leader of Islamic State Fadhil Ahmad al-Hayali in northern Iraq. See ‘Islamic State “deputy” killed in air strike us says’ bbc News 21 August 2015 http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-34022583 (last accessed 10 June 2016). Iraq’s consent and Syria’s lack of consent for those United States attacks have no influence on the qualification of the conflict. Regarding the categorization of the violence if United States troops are deployed on the ground in those two countries see infra section 5.5.
See Kolbsupra note 4 at 159–160.
Cortensupra note 67 at 84–99; R. van Steenberghe La légitime défense en droit international public (2012) at 223–228.
See Paulus and Vashakmadzesupra note 10 at 113–115; Hoffmann supra note 23 at 253–254.