Andrew Carswell
Andrew Carswell
Fellow (HRREC) | Director, International Rule of Law Initiative | Consultant, Global Affairs Canada


Research Interests

  • United Nations Charter
  • Overcoming the UN Security Council veto in mass atrocity situations
  • The international law of aggression
  • Integrating the law of armed conflict into the operational practice of armed forces and non-state armed groups

B.A. (McGill University), LL.B. (Cardiff University), LL.M. (Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva)

Andrew Carswell is the founder of the International Rule of Law Initiative and a consultant on the law of armed conflict. He was employed by the International Committee of the Red Cross from 2006 to 2020, working in the Middle East (most recently Syria), Africa, Asia, the US and Russia as a delegate to national armed forces and, in some contexts, non-state armed groups. He was three times director of ICRC's senior-most annual course for national armed forces, SWIRMO. He also served as the ICRC's representative to Canada from 2015-18.

A lawyer, former military officer and prosecutor with deployed peacekeeping experience, Carswell's career has been dedicated to improving respect for the laws of war. This has involved translating international humanitarian law treaties and customary law into military tactics, techniques and procedures. It has also involved humanitarian diplomacy: engaging with parties to armed conflict regarding their conduct of hostilities with a view to protecting vulnerable populations. Now, he is working with member states to transform the working methodology of the UN regarding international peace and security—and to prevent war itself. Carswell is a published author and lectures widely on these subjects.