An evaluation of the legal framework for the protection of civilians in armed conflict (a case study of Mogadishu in Somalia

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Kampala International University, Faculty of Law
The study is an evaluation of the legal frame work protecting civilians in armed conflict, putting specific emphasis on the Mogadishu conflict in Republic of Somalia. The issue of wars and unrest is common worldwide where the most delicate victims who are civilians have been tortured, many lost their lives and property during conflicts. This is not exceptional in a failed state like Somalia were millions of innocent civilians have lost their lives despite the existence of the protection provided to civilians under IHL. This study evaluates situations of armed conflict and how the rights of civilians have been violated in conflicts like the Mogadishu conflict where the means of war fare used are unconventional. The history of the conflict is examined and the plight of civilians. The study further discussed the importance of the protection of civilians to be a moral responsibility and the duty to protect civilians though primarily imposed on the state, is a collective one. The study further evaluates the various laws that protect civilians provided for under IHL; the various classifications of armed conflicts; the traditional classification and the IHL classification of armed conflict. The study shows challenges in classifying the Mogadishu conflict, owing to its nature; it does not fit the IHL definition of armed conflicts thereby creating challenge in the protection of civilians in armed conflicts. The study also recommends strategies that may enable effective protection of civilians in the Mogadishu conflict.
A Dissertation Submitted to the Faculty of Law in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Award of a Degree of Bachelor of Laws of Kampala International University
legal framework, conflict