RICR No. 850

The implementation of international humanitarian law in the Russian Federation

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The object of this article is to identify several issues pertinent to impie-mentation of international humanitarian law in the Russian Federation. It first examines the relevant provisions of the Russian Constitution of 1993 and discusses the extent to which they provide for the incorporation of international norms. An overview of current Russian legislation is then given, focusing on some specific examples of legislative incorporation of international humanitarian law. That overview will not be confined to laws adopted solely by the Russian parliament. References to international law and more specifically to international humanitarian law can also be found in military field manuals that are binding on the Russian armed forces and other uniformed armed services. Finally, a notable case decided by the Russian Constitutional Court in 1995 with regard to the implementation of international humanitarian law is discussed. In its decision, the supreme body of judicial review in the Russian Federation made remarkable references to the Additional Protocol II of 1977 to the Geneva Conventions of 1949.1

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