This Note discusses a crucial problem in the law of state accountability for human rights abuses. Specifically, it analyzes the difficulty of attaching liability when a state "negligently supports" a group that it should reasonably expect to commit human rights abuses. This note shows that the current legal framework governing attribution stems from a myopic focus on non-state actors "acting" like arms of the state. Indeed, the current tests require that the state have an extraordinarily high level of control over the non-state actors before liability can attach. This requirement not only creates perverse incentives for states to acquire less control over the nonstate groups they fund, but it also makes the goal of state responsibility illusory.
Rebels, Negligent Support, and State Accountability: Holding States Accountable for the Human Rights Violations of Non-State Actors,
23 Duke Journal of Comparative & International Law
Available at: https://scholarship.law.duke.edu/djcil/vol23/iss2/4