The duty to investigate in armed conflict
States are being called to account for their actions in armed conflict by reference to a
duty to investigate violations of applicable law, largely by analogy to standards of international
human rights law. There is however a lack of accepted standardised norms regarding the content of
this duty in situations of armed conflict.
This research project seeks to elucidate the specific
scope and content of the duty to investigate in armed conflict, and establish the ways in which
parties to a conflict can best implement this duty under obligations of international law. The
research is currently focusing on the developing State practice in this area, as well as developments
in international law, in order to clarify the standards to which militaries and States should be held
Other phases of the project include looking at what can and should trigger a duty to investigate,
as well as application of the duty to non-State actors and multi-national operations. The Project has received
funding from the Swiss and Dutch Governments, through the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and
For more information, please contact Claire Simmons.