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Contents

SIPRI Yearbook 2023

SIPRI Yearbook 2023

III. The current regulatory landscape for private military and security companies

Chapter:
4. Private military and security companies in armed conflict
Source:
SIPRI Yearbook 2023
Author(s):
Ori Swed, Marina Caparini, Sorcha Macleod

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, and the utilization of the Wagner Group in that conflict, as well as in other ongoing armed conflicts, has firmly refocused international attention on the regulatory gaps around both mercenaries and private military and security companies (PMSCs).1 While many of the regulatory developments during 2022 are associated with or are a response to the actions of the Wagner Group, it is important to note that other mercenary groups and PMSCs have also been active in armed conflicts, which points to broader systemic issues. In particular, ongoing atrocities by mercenaries and related actors, including grave human rights violations, war crimes and crimes against humanity, with a lack of concomitant accountability, continue to raise significant concerns.2 Moreover, the increasing trend towards deploying mercenaries and related actors in armed conflicts serves to highlight the fundamental lack of agreement among the international community on how to characterize such actors, and consequently impedes international regulatory and accountability processes and mechanisms.3 This section briefly examines three main areas of regulatory challenges and developments that emerged or were consolidated during 2022: (a) proxy actors in armed conflicts; (b) the regulation of PMSCs at the United Nations; and (c) case law involving mercenaries or PMSCs.

Citation (MLA):
Swed, Ori, Marina Caparini, and Sorcha Macleod. "4. Private military and security companies in armed conflict." SIPRI Yearbook. SIPRI. Oxford: Oxford University Press. 2016. Web. 19 May. 2024. <https://www.sipriyearbook.org/view/9780198890720/sipri-9780198890720-chapter-004-div1-027.xml>.
Citation (APA):
Swed, O., Caparini, M., & Macleod, S. (2016). 4. Private military and security companies in armed conflict. In SIPRI, SIPRI Yearbook 2023: Armaments, Disarmament and International Security. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Retrieved 19 May. 2024, from https://www.sipriyearbook.org/view/9780198890720/sipri-9780198890720-chapter-004-div1-027.xml
Citation (Chicago):
Swed, Ori, Marina Caparini, and Sorcha Macleod. "4. Private military and security companies in armed conflict." In SIPRI Yearbook 2023: Armaments, Disarmament and International Security, SIPRI. (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016). Retrieved 19 May. 2024, from https://www.sipriyearbook.org/view/9780198890720/sipri-9780198890720-chapter-004-div1-027.xml
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