Practice Relating to Rule 99. Deprivation of Liberty
Uruguay’s Basic Information for the Pre-Deployment of Personnel Involved in UN Stabilization Missions (2014), in a section entitled “What is international humanitarian law?”, states:
In the workshop on pre-deployment, we will show a brief audiovisual presentation as an overview of the topic. It is important to remember that international humanitarian law (IHL) is a set of rules that, for precisely humane reasons, seeks to limit the effects of armed conflicts. It protects people not involved or no longer involved in combat and limits the means and methods of warfare. IHL is often also called “law of war” and “law of armed conflict”.
Although during peacekeeping operations or missions we are not in a traditional war scenario, we are in a place where there are conflicts of another kind and our participation may require us to apply these rules. The United Nations is clear in establishing that peacekeeping personnel are subject to and must respect and enforce the rules of IHL.
9.1 BASIC HUMANITARIAN RIGHTS
- … assistance must be provided to the fallen and food, shelter and legal guarantees to prisoners.
In a section entitled “The protection of childhood”, the Basic Information also states:
In situations of armed conflict, children are exposed to serious violations of their rights, which demand the attention of all responsible parties in those locations, especially those who, like the contingents in the mission zones, work under the flag of the United Nations.
The issue is so important that a dedicated office has been set up, headed by the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict.
The office has identified six serious violations of the human rights of children during armed conflicts. Personnel are requested to be particularly alert to these violations and to report them through the established mechanisms. …
The six serious violations are:
4. Abduction of children (this includes human trafficking as a form of forced recruitment and sexual slavery, forcing children to work or act as prostitutes, often moving them from one country to another. If you are stationed at a border zone, we would ask you to pay special attention to this issue).
Uruguay’s Law on Cooperation with the ICC (2006) states:
A person who commits any of the following acts with the intention to destroy in whole or in part a national, ethnic, religious, political, or trade union group or a group with their own identity based on gender, sexual orientation, cultural or social reasons, age, disability or health, is punished with fifteen to thirty years’ imprisonment:
B) … deprivation of liberty … of one or more members of the group.
The Law also states:
26.2. Persons and objects affected by the war crimes set out in the present provision are persons and objects which international law protects in international or internal armed conflict.
26.3. The following are war crimes:
7. … unlawful confinement.