Introduction: reparations beyond the state: non-state armed groups and dealing with past harms

Luke Moffett*, Cheryl Lawther, Kieran McEvoy

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The capacity of non-state armed groups (NSAGs) to inflict harms on civilians or other combatants remains a perennial challenge of the international and legal political order. The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) estimates that some 60–80 million civilians are currently living under ‘direct State-like governance of armed groups’, with tens of millions more affected by their violence (ICRC 2021: 2). In light of that reality, there has been increasing academic attention paid to understanding how such armed groups ‘govern’ territories and people over whom they exercise power (Arjona 2016) and the range of social or political variables that may induce violence or restraint amongst such groups (Stanton 2016; Terry and McQuinn 2018). In addition, there has been increased attention to the role of international law in general, and human rights obligations in particular, in seeking some measure of accountability from members of such groups, as well as efforts to provide some form of redress for victims and survivors (Fortin 2017; Murray 2016). Needless to say, routes to such redress are complex.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)379-386
JournalJournal of Human Rights Practice
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 07 Oct 2022


  • Law
  • Political Science and International Relations
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • History


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