General Assembly Resolution # 345
A resolution to improve worldwide human and civil rights.
Category: Civil Rights
Proposed by: Separatist Peoples
Singing the praises of this Assemblys many successes in the realm of protecting the unarmed and innocent in times of armed conflict,
Enthusiastically hoping further measures to be unnecessary, yet
Pessimistically noting the above to be exceedingly unlikely,
Remembering the protections extended to all manner of noncombatants and civilians in war by this august Assembly,
Disgusted at the increasing incidence of these protections being used against the very states sworn to uphold them,
Finding the practice of using individuals as living shields to be deliberately contrary to the historic goals of the World Assembly of protecting human rights and ensuring peace, and
Righteously amending this wrong,
1. The World Assembly defines the use of living shields as the act of an armed party intentionally utilizing unarmed noncombatants, be they volunteers or otherwise, to shield themselves or tangible assets in such a way as to compel a strategic or tactical advantage by way of manipulating a third partys obligation to respect the protected status of the noncombatants or their perceived value therein.
2. The World Assembly further defines noncombatants to include both civilians who belong to a protected status or are otherwise taking no direct part in the hostilities, and those belligerents who, having been granted Prisoner of War or hors de combat status, are unable to take a direct part in hostilities.
3. Member states shall consider the use of individuals as living shields in the course of armed conflict illegal and a war crime.
4. Member states shall consider the use of individuals as living shields to be an aggravating circumstance when prosecuting or otherwise dealing with violators of international law, and are encouraged to take the necessary steps to protect those hostages from harm.
5. Member states shall consider a belligerents use of living shields a mitigating circumstance when dealing with the prosecution of troops who, due to the enemys violation of these provisions, find themselves directly or indirectly responsible for the accidental violation of a noncombatants protected status, and are encouraged to acquit the accused in situations wherein gross negligence cannot be ascribed.
6. Member states are permitted to prosecute unarmed noncombatants who voluntarily serve as living shields as they would prosecute combatants who utilize such living shields.
- a. Member states are encouraged, in instances where it cannot be determined whether an individual was voluntarily or forcibly taken as a living shield, to offer to resettle those individuals in an area away from the conflict.
b. If those individuals refuse and, subsequently, are repeatedly utilized as living shields in a manner that calls into question the non-voluntary nature of their participation, member states are permitted to prosecute and detain them accordingly.