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Legal issues arising from the armed conflict in Afghanistan

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The article is an attempt to shed some light on the legal issues arising from the armed conflict that took place in Afghanistan in the aftermath of the September 11th 2001 terrorist attacks as concerns non-state actors. The first two parts consider the right of self-defence as a possible justification of the US bombings. Can attacks by non-state actors qualify as "armed attacks" under Article 51 of the United Nations Charter? Secondly the legal limits of the exercise of the right of self-defence are considered, with focus on the possible adversaries of the actions of the defending state. In the third part, the imprisonment of the captured Taliban and Al Qaeda fighters is considered. The legal status of the detainees, the possible legal bases of the detention and the relationship of the legal bases with the treatment of prisoners are discussed.

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