National position of Japan (2021)
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==[[International humanitarian law (jus in bello)|International humanitarian law (''jus in bello'')]]== <section begin=JP_2021 IHL /> "International humanitarian law is also applicable to cyber operations. In situations of armed conflict, the methods and means of warfare used by the parties to the conflict are subject to regulations under international humanitarian law. This extends to cyber operations implemented by the parties to the conflict. Several principles under international humanitarian law, including the principle of humanity, necessity, proportionality and distinction, are also applicable to acts in cyberspace. In paragraph 28(d) of the 2015 GGE report, those principles are referred to as "established international legal principles." This reference, considered together with the fact that this report affirms the applicability of existing international law, can be interpreted to affirm the applicability of those principles. [..] In principle, the existence of an "armed conflict" is a prerequisite for the application of international humanitarian law. Under the Geneva Conventions, there is no particular definition of an "armed conflict," and therefore, whether or not a certain incident constitutes an "armed conflict" needs to be decided on a case-by-case basis, taking into account a number of elements, such as the manner of the actual attack and the intent of each party to the incident, in a comprehensive manner. If the effects of cyber operations are taken into consideration, the conduct of cyber operations alone may reach the threshold of an "armed conflict." As affirming the applicability of international humanitarian law to cyber operations contributes to the regulation of methods and means of warfare, the argument that doing so will lead to the militarization of cyberspace is groundless.[...] On the other hand, modes of combat in cyberspace are different from those in traditional domains. Therefore, how international humanitarian law regarding, for example, the scope of combatants applies to cyberspace should be further discussed."<ref>[https://www.mofa.go.jp/files/100200935.pdf Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, Basic Position of the Government of Japan on International Law Applicable to Cyber Operations, 16 June 2021], 6-7</ref><section end=JP_2021 IHL />
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