Practice Relating to Rule 13. Area Bombardment
Under Spain’s LOAC Manual (1996), an attack launched while “considering as a single military objective a number of clearly separated and distinct military objectives located in a city, town, village or other area containing a concentration of civilians and civilian objects” is an indiscriminate attack and, as such prohibited.
Spain’s LOAC Manual (2007) states:
An attack that treats a number of clearly separated and distinct military objectives located in a city, town, village or other area containing a similar concentration of civilians or civilian objects as a single military objective is considered to be an indiscriminate attack and therefore prohibited.
In 2010, in the Couso case
, which concerned the killing of a Spanish journalist in Baghdad on 8 April 2003 by troops of the United States of America, the Criminal Chamber of Spain’s Supreme Court referred to norms of IHL relevant to the case under review, including Article 51(5)(a) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I.