Workers clear a 270,000-square-meter field of mines on Sept. 7, 2017, in Mirna Dolyna, Ukraine. (Pierre Crom/Getty Images)

Skeptics tend to see international law as ineffective in stopping atrocities and human suffering in armed conflict. Most contemporary armed conflicts are civil rather than interstate wars, but nonstate armed groups, such as the Syrian Free Army, Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) or the Taliban, are generally precluded from signing international conventions protecting human rights. Yet, our research shows that armed groups can be incentivized to commit to and abide by international humanitarian norms, and that they can even induce state actors to do the same.

The nongovernmental organization Geneva Call has been working to engage armed groups from numerous war-affected countries such as Sudan and Syria — and get these groups to comply with international humanitarian law.…  Seguir leyendo »