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The NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence, Tallinn Manual on the International Law Applicable to Cyber Warfare, 2013

In 2009, the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence7° invited an independent international group of experts to produce a manual on the law governing cyber warfare/1 The editorial committee for the Manual consisted of six per- sons.72 ICRC was invited as an observer. The Manual is applicable to international and non-international armed conflicts. [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6]

It is highlighted in the introduction to the Manual that:

there are no provisions that directly deal with cyber “warfare”. Similarly, because State cyber practice and publicly available expressions of opinio juris are sparse, it is sometimes difficult to definitively conclude that any cyber-specific customary international law norm exists. This being so, any claim that every assertion in the Manual represents an incontrovertible restatement of international law would be an exaggeration ... the Rules set forth in the Tallinn Manual reflect consensus among Experts as to the applicable lex lata, that is, the law currently governing cyber conflict. It does not set forth lex ferenda best practice, or preferred policy.73

There are no references to IHRL and substantive IHRL is not reflected in the Manual, for example in relation to the rules on detained persons or children. It is highlighted in the introduction of the Manual that it is ‘without prejudice to other applicable fields of international law, such as international human rights’/4

  • [1] UK, High Court of Justice, [2014] EWHC 1369 (QB), 2 May 2014, paras 262, 266, and 267.
  • [2] Principle 16 reads: ‘Nothing in The Copenhagen Process Principles and Guidelines affects the applicability of international law to international military operations conducted by the States or international organizations; or the obligations of their personnel to respect such law; or the applicability ofinternational or national law to non-State actors.’
  • [3] 6® Minutes of the ‘3rd Copenhagen Conference on the Handling of Detainees in InternationalMilitary Operations’, 18—19 Oct. 2012, .
  • [4] Minutes of the ‘3rd Copenhagen Conference on the Handling of Detainees in InternationalMilitary Operations’, 18—19 Oct. 2012, .
  • [5] 7° The Centre is an international military organization based in Tallinn, Estonia, and accredited in2008 by NATO as a ‘Centre for Excellence’. See: .
  • [6] Tallinn Manual on the International Law Applicable to Cyber Warfare (2013). 72 Namely Michael Schmitt (General Editor and Director of the project), William H. Boothby,Bruno Demeyere, Wolff Heintschel von Heinegg, James Bret Michael, and Thomas Wingfield.
 
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