General Assembly First
Protection of Civilians in Areas of Armed Conflict; Privatization of Modern Warefare and the Use of Mercenaries
Modern warfare has become privatized at an alarming rate since the turn of the millennium, despite mercenaries being deemed “unlawful combatants” in international humanitarian law. Private military and security companies (PMSC) have enjoyed lucrative contracts in recent years on behalf of state actors to engage in conflict around the world, acting as a cost-effective alternative to the deployment of national armed forces, yet the evasion of responsibility for their conduct given the sensitive nature of their agreement with respective governments is often in blatant violation of the UN Charter. The General Assembly of the United Nations, especially its First Committee (DISEC/GA1), has a particular responsibility to oversee and govern the privatization of modern warfare to ensure personnel employed by PMSCs are subject to the same legal accountability that armed forces ordinarily would under national and international law.