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Title: Humanizing the law of cyber targeting : human dignity, cyber-attacks and the protection of the civilian population
Author: Biggio, Giacomo
ISNI:       0000 0004 9358 3267
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2019
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The main objective of my thesis is to argue whether a human dignity-oriented interpretation of the set of rules known as the ‘law of targeting’ can reduce the potential adverse effects related to the use of cyber technologies in times of armed conflict, thereby contributing to the process known as the ‘humanization of International Humanitarian Law’. In order to do so, I will discuss the process of humanization as being the result of the dynamic between the principles of military necessity and humanity, arguing for an interpretation of the principle of humanity grounded on the idea that the dignity of the individual must be respected even during wartime. I will then employ a human dignity-oriented interpretation to the notion of attack under Art. 49 of Additional Protocol I, in order to argue that the underlying notion of violence shall be interpreted more expansively and include, beyond cyber-operations causing physical violence, also cyber-operations causing serious psychological violence and serious economic violence. This would extend the definition of attack to a wider range of cyber operations, subjecting them to the rules of targeting and, by increasing the protection of the civilian population, would therefore enhance the process of humanization. Subsequently, I will discuss what are the major interpretive issues related to the application of the human dignity-based framework to the law of targeting in the cyber context, by examining the principle of distinction between civilians/civilian objects and combatants/military objectives, the principle of proportionality and the rules on precautions in attack and against the effects of attacks.
Supervisor: Tsagourias, Nicholas ; Buchan, Russell Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available