2021 courses

International humanitarian law (IHL), also referred to as the law of armed conflict (LOAC) or jus in bello is the set of rules that applies in time of any armed conflict that seeks to reduce the devastating impact of war and armed conflict by protecting civilians of victims of conflict (including non-combatants and the wounded who are not participating in the hostilities. The violations of IHL and human rights in the ongoing armed conflict are extreme. Within this challenging environment, awareness of and ability to apply International Humanitarian Law (IHL) and humanitarian principles are increasingly important. Therefore, this course is designed to explore the basic concepts of international humanitarian law, the most important documents governing armed conflict and the protection of war victims from a human rights law perspective. This programme also aims to provide a general introduction to IHL across key topics so that the participants will have a better grasp of the three key principles in IHL that regulate the conduct of hostilities – Distinction, Proportionality and Precautions – and will be able to illustrate how they limit the effects of armed conflict on the civilians and persons hors de combat on victims (both non-combatants and wounded)

Objectives :

  1. To gain an understanding of the basic principles of IHL and the basic rules for the conduct of armed conflict, their application in practice, and the mechanisms for enforcement when they are breached.
  2. To provide a platform to discuss current humanitarian law issues.

Outcome :

At the end of the course, participants will have a general idea of the origins of IHL, various IH; treaties and their contents and the main principles. They will also learn when and how IHL applies, the legal distinctions between international and non-international armed conflicts, the principles governing the means and methods of warfare, laws around protection of the civilian population, how IHL is implemented and more.

Centre for Military and International Humanitarian Law (CoMIHL), National Defense University of Malaysia (NDUM), together with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), has conducted a course on the International Humanitarian Law (IHL) on Terrorism and Counter-terrorism in 2019. The course received good feedbacks from the participants with various backgrounds. The 2nd series of this course is designed to provide participants with the key concepts and principles that underpin international instruments and institutions concerned with the complex topics of terrorism and how to counter terrorism, as well as any hard, security-based, responses adopted by States when confronted with acts of terrorism. This course will provide a brief overview of modern terrorism and its implications for the international community. Specifically, the course also will provide insight into terrorism in the area of international humanitarian law. The target audience will be academia, enforcement officers, and key stakeholders in counter-terrorism activities.


  1. Analyse the concept and underpinning legal principles of international crimes of terrorism, whether at the national or international level.
  2. Explain treaty-based crimes relevant for prosecuting acts of terrorism, whether at the national or international level.
  3. Familiarize students with interdisciplinary perspectives of terrorism and counter-terrorism.



The role of the military has become even more complex in the 1st century. Indeed the paradigm has shifted from conventional military task ( national defence and military security towards matters  such as Military Aid to Civil Authority missions like border security, protection of national resources, disaster assistance and part of national response to pandemic events. This  phenomena is being seen globally, where the militaries  are called in to assist in provision of field hospitals, assisting  in movement controls, providing security for logistics, assistance in test capabilities etc. This represents a significant shift for many military forces from their primary role to the military operations within another legal framework that is likely to need doctrinal, training, planning and decision making adaptations. This course is designed to look at the relevant legal framework that may be integrated into the planning and decision-making process to ensure such operations are legally compliant and meet the obligations placed on military forces and commanders.



  1. To address humanitarian concerns that should be taken into consideration in the military planning process.
  2. To raise the level of expertise and awareness of IHL in the military security operation
  3. To understand the challenges of the military in exercising the security operation.


At the end of the course, participants will be able to integrate and apply the relevant IHL provision into the conduct of operations in general and to take decisions and measures with respect to IHL during internal security operations and situations related to them.

Healthcare in detention is a 3-day course offered by the Centre for Military and Humanitarian Law, National Defence University Malaysia, in collaboration with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). This course is open to participants working in the field of management of prison and detention centre, healthcare in detention, nationally or internationally. The course incorporates a multidisciplinary approach to bring public health and legal experts as well as academia together. The course aims at providing prison management, detention centre officers and health care professionals with the information, methods and tools needed to critically analyse and address health and human rights issues affecting people in detention. The course covers topics such as human rights approach to prison management, health systems, control of communicable diseases (COVID 19/TB, HIV/AIDS), and ethical issues that arise when providing health care services to populations in detention. It also provides an overview of the main legal instruments, professional codes and declarations designed to protect the rights of prisoners, detainees and patients.


  1. Define the main legal instruments, professional codes, and declarations designed to protect the rights of prisoners, detainees, and health professionals responsible for the care of these populations
  2. Appraise the key health issues in places of detention
  3. Analyse and address health and human rights issues facing populations in detention.

Outcome :

At the end of the course, the participants should be able to understand the principles of good prison/detention management specifically in relation to healthcare of prisoners/detainees, adapt the principle of secure, safe and orderly prison/detention. The participant should be able to be aware of the challenges in working for the best practices in relation to the management of healthcare in detention.