The Protection of Access to Food for Civilians under International Humanitarian Law: Acts Constituting War Crimes

  • Adriana Fillol Mazo University of Seville
Keywords: Human Right to Food, Food Security, Armed Conflict, International Humanitarian Law, Civilian Population, War Crimes, Justiciability


The objective of this paper is to examine the specific provisions, within the framework of International Humanitarian Law (IHL), that protect the human right to food of the civilian population and to observe to what extent the protection of access to food is an issue taken into account by IHL during the development of an armed conflict. Answering these questions requires a detailed analysis of this branch of international law, in order to identify the specific rules of IHL that aim, directly or indirectly, to ensure that civilians do not see denied their access to food during the armed conflict, whether international or non-international.  In many armed conflicts, a greater number of civilians die from food deprivation than as a direct result of hostilities. In this sense, the Statute of the International Criminal Court criminalizes those acts that, during the armed conflict, violate IHL prohibitions related to food issues, thus we will also mention them, with the aim of clarifying the possible individual criminal responsibility attributed to those who carry out such acts.

The scientific method that has been used in this work is the legal-sociological method, insofar as it is the one that we consider most appropriate for the multidisciplinary approach, always from the legal point of view, regarding the understanding of the rules, the lack of them, their effectiveness, their rationale, etc.  This method is based on the idea that law cannot be studied as an isolated domain but must be analysed as part of social reality. The elaboration of this work, with a multidisciplinary object, has also required the use of several methodological techniques, such as social and legal analysis, legal deduction and induction, description and interdisciplinarity.


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How to Cite
Fillol Mazo , A. (2020). The Protection of Access to Food for Civilians under International Humanitarian Law: Acts Constituting War Crimes. The Age of Human Rights Journal, (14), 181-209.