IRRC No. 324

The minimum humanitarian rules applicable in periods of internal tension and strife

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Many States have in the course of their history faced internal tension and strife, sometimes so serious as to threaten their fundamental interests. These situations, characterized as they are by acts of revolt and violence committed by more or less organized groups fighting either the authorities or amongst themselves, are distinct from those termed non-international armed conflicts, in which the violence is more intense. In order to bring these internal confrontations to an end and restore order, the authorities frequently make massive use of police force or even the armed forces. The inevitable result is a weakening of the rule of law, marked by serious, large-scale human rights violations causing widespread suffering among the population.

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