THE PROTECTION OF THE RIGHT TO FOOD DURING ARMED CONFLICTS: THE SCOPE OF INTERNATIONAL LAW AND THE CASE OF SYRIA*224

The right to food, as a basic human right, is on the agenda of the international community since the emergence of international human rights law. It is recognised not only by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, but also by the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR). States Parties to the ICESCR are under the obligation of at least the realization of the minimum essential level of the right to food, namely freedom from hunger, even under the circumstances of armed conflicts. The 1949 Geneva Conventions and its Additional Protocols of 1977 also impose obligations on States regarding access to food, as a basic human need, and prohibit the use of starvation as a weapon. However, in today’s world, freedom from hunger is violated during armed conflicts by exposing thousands of people to starvation. The protracted armed conflict in Syria is a case in point, violating the rules of international law and oblige us to question what the right to food means during armed conflicts. This article examines the significance of the freedom from hunger during armed conflicts in terms of the conflict in Syria by discussing the scope of the right to food in international law.

SİLAHLI ÇATIŞMALAR ESNASINDA GIDA HAKKININ KORUNMASI: ULUSLARASI HUKUKUN KAPSAMI VE SURİYE ÖRNEĞİ

Temel bir insan hakkı olarak gıda hakkı, uluslararası insan hakları hukukunun doğuşundan beri uluslararası toplumun gündemindedir. İlgili hak, sadece İnsan Hakları Evrensel Bildirgesi ile değil, aynı zamanda hukuken bağlayıcı olan Ekonomik, Sosyal ve Kültürel Haklara İlişkin Uluslararası Antlaşma ile de tanınmıştır. ESKHUS’ye taraf olan devletler gıda hakkının asgari gerekli seviyesini oluşturan açlıktan kurtulma hakkını silahlı çatışma şartları altında dahi korumakla yükümlüdürler. 1949 Cenevre Sözleşmeleri ve 1977 Ek Protokolleri de temel bir insan ihtiyacı olan gıdaya erişim hakkını korumaya yönelik hükümler içermekte olup açlığın silah olarak kullanılmasını yasaklamıştır. Bununla birlikte, günümüzde silahlı çatışmalar esnasında pek çok insan açlıktan ölmeye terk edilmek suretiyle açlıktan kurtulma hakkı ihlal edilmektedir. Bu bağlamda, Suriye’de yaşanan silahlı çatışma, milletlerarası hukukun kurallarını ihlal eden ve bizi gıda hakkının silahlı çatışmalar esnasında gerçekten bir anlama sahip olmadığını sormaya zorunlu kılan tipik bir örnektir. Bu makale, gıda hakkının milletlerarası hukuktaki kapsamını tartışmak suretiyle, açlıktan kurtulma hakkının silahlı çatışmalar esnasında taşıdığı önemi, Suriye’de yaşanan çatışma açısından incelemektedir.

Kaynakça

AKANDE Dapo/GILLARD Emanuel-Chiara, Oxford Guidance on the Law Relating to Humanitarian Relief Operations in Situations of Armed Conflict, OCHA, 2016.

AKANDE Dapo/GILLARD Emanuela- Chiara, “Arbitrary Withholding of Consent to Humanitarian Relief Operations in Armed Conflict”, International Law Studies, Vol. 92, 2016, pp. 482-511.

ARIMATSU Louise/CHOUDHRY Mohbuba, “The Legal Classification of the Armed Conflicts in Syria, Yemen and Libya”, Chatham House International Law PP, 2014/01, March 2014, https:// www.chathamhouse.org/sites/default/files/home/chatham/public_html/sites/default/files/20140300ClassificationConflictsAr imatsuChoudhury1.pdf

BARTELS Rogier, “Denying Humanitarian Access as an International Crime in times of Non-International Armed Conflict: The Challenges to Prosecute and Some Proposals for the Future”, Israel Law Review, Vol. 48. No. 3, 2015, pp. 281-307.

BATUR YAMANER Melike, Silahlı Çatışmalarda Sivillerin Korunması, Arıkan, İstanbul, 2007.

BLANK Laurie R./NOONE Gregory P., International Law and Armed Conflict Fundamental Principles and Contemporary Challenges in the Law of War, Wolters Kluwer Law & Business, New York, 2013.

CHEN Ying, “The Right to Food”, European Journal of Law Reform, Vol. 12, Issue 3-4, 2010, pp. 158-208.

EGELAND Jan, “A Way out of the Syrian Carnage”, Brown Journal of World Affairs, Fall-Winter 2015, Vol. XXII, Issue I, pp. 297-304. GARDINER Richard, Treaty Interpretation, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2015.

GIACCA Gilles, “The Relationship between Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and International Humanitarian Law”, in RIEDEL Eibe/ GIACCA Gilles/ GOLAY Christophe, Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights in International Law, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2014, pp. 308-342.

GIACCA Gilles, Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in Armed Conflicts, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2014.

GILL Terry D., “Classifying the Conflict in Syria”, International Law Studies U.S. Naval War College, Vol. 92, 2016, pp. 353-380.

HARTBERG Martin/ BOWEN Dominic/ GROVEN Daniel, “Failing Syria: Assessing the Impact of UN Security Council Resolutions in Protecting and Assisting Civilians in Syria”. March 2015, https:// www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfam.org/files/file_attachments/ bp-failing-syria-unsc-resolution-120315-en1.pdf

HERIK Larissa ven den, “Economic, Social and Cultural Rights International Criminal Law’s Blind Spot?”, in RIEDEL Eibe/ GIACCA Gilles/

GOLAY Christophe, Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights in International Law, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2014, pp. 343-366.

KARLI Mehmet/ KURTDARCAN Bleda Rıza (ed.), Suriye Krizinin Hukuki Boyutları, Galatasaray Hukuk Fakültesi Yayınları, İstanbul, 2014.

KEARNS III Anthony Paul, “The Right to Food Exists Via Customary International Law”, Suffolk Transnational Law Review, Vol. 22, 1998, pp. 223-257.

KEARNEY Diana, “Food Deprivations as Crimes Against Humanity”, International Law and Politics, Vol. 46, 2013, pp. 253-290.

KHATIB Lina, “Seeing the starving children of Madaya is shocking - but so is the world’s neglect”, Guardian, 8. January. 2016, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/jan/08/madaya-starvingchildren-isis-syrian-conflict

LATTIMER Mark, MOJTAHEDI Shabnam, TUCKER Lee Anna, A Step Towards Justice: Current accountability options for crimes under international law committed in Syria, Norwegian Refugee Council/Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre, April 2015; https://www.refworld.org/docid/56692d8e4.html

LUBELL Noam, “Parallel Application of International Humanitarian Law and International Human Rights Law”, Israel Law Review, Vol. 40, No. 2, 2007, pp. 648-660.

MACALISTER-SMITH Peter, “Protection of civilian population and the prohibition of starvation as a method of warfare: Draft Texts on International Humanitarian Assistance in Disaster Situations”, Review of the International Red Cross, Vol.31, Issue. 284, October 1991, pp. 440-459.

MATHESON Michael J., International Civil Tribunals and Armed Conflict, Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, Leiden, Boston, 2012.

MELZER Nils, International Humanitarian Law A Comprehensive Introduction, ICRC, Geneva, 2016.

MÜLLER Amrei, “Limitations to and Derogations from Economic, Social and Cultural Rights”, Human Rights Law Review, Vol. 9, No. 4, 2009, pp. 557-601.

NIADA Laura, “Hunger and International Law: Far-Reaching Scope of the Human Right to Food”, Connecticut Journal of International Law, Vol. 22, 2006-2007, pp. 131-201.

ORAKHELASHVILI Alexandre, “The Interaction between Human Rights and Humanitarian Law: Fragmentation, Conflict, Parallelism, or Convergence”, The European Journal of International Law, Vol. 19, No. 1, 2008, pp. 161-182

PEJIC Jelana, “The Right to Food in Situations of Armed Conflict: The Legal Framework”, Revue Internationale de la Croix-Rouge, Vol. 83, No. 844, 2001, p. 1097-1109.

POWER Susan, “Siege Warfare in Syria: Prosecuting the Starvation of Civilians”, Amsterdam Law Forum, Vol. 8(2), 2016, pp. 1-22.

SCHMID Evelyn, “War Crimes Related to Violations of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights” ZaöRV, Vol. 71, 2011, pp. 523-541.

SCHMID Evelyne, Taking Economic, Social and Cultural Rights Seriously in International Criminal Law, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2015.

SKOGLY Sigrun, “Crimes Against Humanity – Revisited: Is There a Role for Economic and Social Rights?”, The International Journal of Human Rights, Vol. 5, No. 1, Spring 2001, pp.58-80.

THOMAS Claire, “Civilian Starvation: A Just Tactic of War?”, Journal of Military Ethics, Vol. 4(2), 2005, pp. 108-118.

TURNS David, “The Law of Armed Conflict (International Humanitarian Law)”, in International Law, MALCOLM D. Evans (ed.), Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2010, pp. 821-851.

WATTS Sean, “Under Siege: International Humanitarian Law and Security Council Practice concerning Urban Siege Warfare”, Research and Policy Paper Harvard Law School, May 2014, pp. 1-22.

YIGZAW Destaw A., “Hunger and the Law: Freedom from Hunger as a Freestanding Right”, Houston Journal of International Law, Vol. 36(3), 2014, pp. 712.

YOUNG, Katherine, “The Minimum Core Obligation of Economic and Social Rights: A Concept in Search of Content”, Yale Journal of International Law, Vol. 33, 2008, pp. 113-175.

ZEIGLER Jean/ GOLAY Christophe/ MOHAN Claire / WAY Sally-Anne, The Fight for the Right to Food, Palgrave Macmillan, Hampshire, 2011.

Amnesty International, “Syria, The Worst Humanitarian Crisis of Our Time”, 7 April 2015; https://www.amnesty.org.nz/syria-worst-humanitariancrisis-our-time

Amnesty International, “In Madaya you see walking skeletons: Harrowing accounts of life under siege in Syria”, 8. January. 2016; https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2016/01/harrowing-accounts-of-lifeunder-siege-in-syria/

Amnesty International, “Starvation of civilians as a method of warfare is a war crime”, 11. 01. 2016; http://www.amnesty.ca/blog/starvationcivilians-method-warfare-war-crime

Human Rights Watch, “Syria: Urgent Need for Aleppo Aid Access”, 12 December 2016; https://www.hrw.org/news/2016/12/12/syria-urgent-need-aleppo-aid-access

ICRC, IHL Database, Customary IHL; https://ihl-databases.icrc.org/customary-ihl/ eng/docs/v1_rul_rule1

ICRC, IHL Database, Customary IHL; https://ihl-databases.icrc.org/customary-ihl/ eng/docs/v1_rul_rule53

ICRC, IHL Database, Customary IHL; https://ihl-databases.icrc.org/customary-ihl/ eng/docs/v1_rul_rule55

ICRC, IHL Database, Customary IHL; https://ihl-databases.icrc.org/customary-ihl/ eng/docs/v1_rul_rule103

ICRC, IHL Database, Customary IHL; https://ihl-databases.icrc.org/customary-ihl/ eng/docs/v1_rul_rule109

ICRC, IHL Database, Customary IHL; https://ihl-databases.icrc.org/customary-ihl/ eng/docs/v1_rul_rule111

ICRC, IHL Database, Customary IHL; https://ihl-databases.icrc.org/customary-ihl/ eng/docs/v1_rul_rule140

ICRC, Treaties, State Parties and Commentaries, Syrian Arab Republic; https://ihldatabases.icrc.org/applic/ihl/ihl.nsf/vwTreatiesByCountrySelected.xsp?xp_countrySelected=SY

The 2016 ICRC Commentary on Common Article 3: Conflicts Not of an International Character, par. 782; https://ihl-databases.icrc.org/applic/ihl/ ihl.nsf/Comment. xsp?action=openDocument&documentId= 59F6CDFA490736C1C1257F7D004BA0EC

A joint FAO/WFP update for the United Nations Security Council, Monitoring food security in countries with conflict situations, (January 2018); http://www.fao.org/3/I8386EN/i8386en.pdf

FAO, Conference Resolution 2/95, “World Food Summit”. http://www.fao.org/wfs/ resource/english/resolute.htm

FAO, Early Warning Early Action report on food security and agriculture 2019 January- March, Rome, 2019; http://www.fao.org/3/CA2892EN/ ca2892en.pdf

FAO, The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World Building Climate Resilience for Food Security and Nutrition, Rome, 2018; http:// www.fao.org/3/I9553EN/i9553en.pdf

FAO, The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World Building Resilience for Peace and Food Security, Rome, 2017; https://docs. wfp.org/api/documents/WFP-0000022419/download/?_ ga=2.100101405.22844 1373.15071 89274-313392846. 1507189274

FAO, Counting the cost, Agriculture in Syria after six years of crisis, 2017; http:// www.fao.org/3/b-i7081e.pdf

FAO, Peace and Food Security: Investing in resilience to sustain rural livelihoods amid conflict, Rome, 2016; http://www.fao.org/3/a-i5591e.pdf

FAO, The State of Food Insecurity in the World 2015, Meeting the 2015 international hunger targets: taking stock of uneven progress, Rome, 2015; http://www.fao.org/3/a-i4646e.pdf

UNGA Res. 2675 (XXV) on Basic Principles for the Protection of Civilian Populations in Armed Conflicts, 9 December 1970.

UNGA Res. 2676 (XXV) on Respect for Human Rights in Armed Conflicts, 9 December 1970.

UNGA Res. 2677 (XXV) on Respect for Human Rights in Armed Conflicts, 9 December 1970.

UNGA Res. 68/182. 14 (18 December 2013).

UNGA Res., Transforming our world: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, A/RES/70/1, 21 October 2015; https://www.un.org/ en/development/desa/population/migration/generalassembly/ docs/globalcompact/A_RES_70_1_E.pdf.

UNGA, Report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, E/2015/59, 19 May 2015.

United Nations General Assembly, Right to Food, A/72/188, 21 July 2017; https:// digitallibrary.un.org/record/1301068

UN/S/RES/237 (1967) Adopted unanimously at the 1361st meeting, on 14 June 1967.

UN/S/RES/2139 (2014) Adopted by the Security Council at its 7116th meeting, on 22 February 2014.

UN/S/RES/2165 (2014) Adopted by the Security Council at its 7216th meeting, on 14 July 2014.

UN/S/RES/2191 (2014), Adopted by the Security Council at its 7344th meeting, on 17 December 2014.

UN/S/RES/2216 (2015), Adopted by the Security Council at its 7426th meeting, on 14 April 2015.

UN/S/RES/2417 (2018), Adopted by the Security Council at its 8267th meeting on 24 May 2018.

UN Human Rights Committee Concluding Observations on the Fourth Periodic Report of the Sudan, UN Doc. CCPR/C/SDN/CO/4, 19 August 2014.

UN HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL RESOLUTIONS & REPORTS: UNGA Human Rights Council, Res. 29/13, UN. Doc. A/HRC/ Res/29/13. 1, 23 July 2013.

UN Human Rights Council, Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic, A/HRC/31/68, 11 February 2016.

UNGA Human Rights Council Resolution S-25/1. The deteriorating situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic, and the recent situation in Aleppo, A/HRC/RES/S-25/1, 25 October 2016.

UN Human Rights Council, Human rights abuses and international humanitarian law violations in the Syrian Arab Republic, 21 July 2016-28 February 2017, A/HRC/34/CRP.3, 10 March 2017.

OHCHR, CCPR General Comment No. 6: Article 6 (Right to Life) Adopted at the Sixteenth Session of the Human Rights Committee, on 30 April 1982.

OHCHR, CESCR General Comment No.3: The Nature of States Parties’ Obligations (Art. 2, Para. 1, of the Covenant), Adopted at the Fifth Session of the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, on 14 December 1990.

OHCHR, CESCR General Comment No. 12: The Right to Adequate Food (Art. 11), Adopted at the Twentieth Session of the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, on 12 May 1999.

OHCHR, The Right to Adequate Food, UN Fact Sheet 34, 2010; http://www.ohchr. org/Documents/Publications/FactSheet34en.pdf

OHCHR, International Legal Protection of Human Rights in Armed Conflict, New York and Geneva,201; https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Publications/HR_in_armed_conflict.pdf

OHCHR, Living under Siege, The Syrian Arab Republic, February 2014; https://www. ohchr.org/Documents/Countries/SY/LivingUnderSiege.pdf

OHCHR, International Humanitarian Law and International Human Rights Law Relevant to Siege Warfare, January 2017; https://www.humanitarianresponse.info/sites/www. humanitarianresponse.info/ files/documents/files/sieges_legal_note_-_final_-_en_1.pdf

OHCHR, “Syria worst man-made disaster since World War-II, Zeid”, Text of a statement by UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein to a high-level panel discussion at the Human Rights Council on the situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic, 14 March 2017; https://www.ohchr.org/en/newsevents/pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=2173&LangID=E

OHCHR, Human Rights Committee, General Comment No. 36 (2018) on article 6 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, on the right to life. CCPR/C/GC/36, 30 October 2018.

OHCHR, Status of Ratification Interactive Dashboard; http://indicators.ohchr.org

International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, Adopted and opened for signature, ratification and accession by General Assembly resolution 2200A (XXI) of 16 December 1966 entry into force 3 January 1976, in accordance with Art.27; https:// www.ohchr.org/en/professionalinterest/pages/cescr. aspx (Last visited: 18.04.2019).

United Nations Treaty Collection Series; https://treaties.un.org/Pages/ViewDetails.aspx? src=IND&mtdsg_no=IVa&chapter=4&clang=_en

Food Security Situation in Syria, Expanded version of Food Security Sector Humanitarian Needs Overview 2018, https://hno-syria.org/data/ downloads/fss.pdf

Joint Statement on hard-to-reach and besieged communities in Syria, United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, 7 January 2016; https://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/ resources/Joint%20Statement%20by%20Yacoub%20El%20 Hillo%20and%20Kevin%20Kennedy_english%20FINAL.pdf

Millennium Summit (6-8 September 2000); https://www.un.org/en/events/pastevents/millennium_summit.shtml

Statement made by the ICRC to the Commission on Human Rights. 57th Annual Session of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights– Agenda item 10 - 27 April 2001; https://www.icrc.org/eng/ resources/documents/statement/57jr49.htm

UN Millennium Declaration, Resolution adopted by the General Assembly, A.RES.55/2, 18 September 2000

UN President of Security Council, Statement by the President of Security Council, UN. Doc. S/ PRST/2013/15 (2013).

UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, Famine Watch, South Sudan; https:// hilalelver.org/media_coverage/famine-watch/

UN Meetings, Coverages and Press Releases, Security Council 7605th Meeting, Starvation by Siege Now ‘Systematic’ in Syria, Assistant Secretary-General Tells Security Council, amid Warnings that Tactic Could Be War Crime, 15 January 2016; https://www.un.org/ press/en/2016/sc12203.doc.htm

Secretary-General’s Informal Briefing to the General Assembly, 14 January 2016; https://www.un.org/sg/en/content/sg/statement/2016-01-14/secretary-generals-informal-briefing-general-assembly-bilingual

Sieges as a weapon of war. Encircle, starve, surrender, evacuate, Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic, 29 May 2018, par. 2.; https: //www.ohchr.org/Documents/HRBodies/HRCouncil/CoISyria/PolicyPaperSieges_29May2018.pdf

Siege Watch; https://siegewatch.org

Siege Watch, Final Report Out of Sight Out of Mind: The Aftermath of Syria’s Sieges, February-May 2018; https://siegewatch.org/wp-content/ uploads/2015/10/pax-siege-watch-final-report-spread.pdf

World Food Summit, Rome Declaration on World Food Security, 13-17 November 1996, Rome, Italy; http://www.fao.org/WFS/

Food Insecurity in War-Torn Syria: From Decades of Self-Sufficiency to Food Dependence, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 04 June 2015; https://carnegieendowment.org/2015/06/04/foodinsecurity-in-war-torn-syria-from-decades-of-self-sufficiencyto-food-dependence-pub-60320.

Forgotten War Crime: Starvation in Syria, Food (Policy) for Thought, 21 January 2016; http://foodpolicyforthought.com/2016/01/21/theforgotten-war-crime-starvation-in-syria/

“UN on vacation while the hungry in Madaya are calling”, 05.01.2016; http://orientnews.net/en/news_show/98960/0/UN-on-vacation-while-thehungry-in-Madaya-are-calling.

UNICEF, Intense violence in Syria’s East Ghouta shuts schools, deprives children of medical care, 10 December 2017; https://www.unicef. org/press-releases/intense-violence-syria-east-ghouta-shutsschools-deprives-children-medical-care

UN News, “From droughts to floods in Somalia; displacement and hunger worsen, says UN”, 8 June 2018; https://news.un.org/en/ story/2018/06/1011741.

UN News, “Nigeria: Famine averted but millions still at risk, stresses top UN relief official”, 13 September 2018; https://news.un.org/en/ story/2017/ 09/564812-nigeria-famine-averted-millions-stillrisk-stresses-top-un-relief-official

UN News, “Syria”, https://news.un.org/en/focus/syria

UN News, “Yemen: ‘Time is running out’ to head off devastating famine, warns UN food agency chief”, 19 September 2018; https://news.un.org/ en/story/2018/09/1019752

World Food Programme (WFP), Syrian Arab Republic; http://www1.wfp.org/countries/syrian-arab-republic

World Food Programme (WFP), Syria mVAM Bulletin 18 October 2017; https:// docs.wfp.org/api/documents/WFP-0000039510/download/

Trial of the Major War Criminals before the International Military Tribunal, Nurnberg, 14 November 1945 to 1 October 1946, published at Nurnberg, Germany (1947).

Military and Paramilitary Activities in and against Nicaragua (Nicaragua v. United States of America), Merits, Judgement, I.C.J. Reports 1986.

ICTY, Prosecutor v. Dusko Tadič Decision on the Defence Motion for Interlocutory Appeal on Jurisdiction, IT-94-1-A, Appeals Chamber, 2 October 1995.

Legality of the Threat or Use of Nuclear Weapons, Advisory Opinion, I.C.J. Reports 1996.

Legal Consequences of the Construction of a Wa11 in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, Advisory Opinion, I. C.J. Reports 2004.

Armed Activities on the Territory of the Congo (Democratic Republic of the Congo v. Uganda), Judgment, I.C.J. Reports 2005.

Kaynak Göster