This book is written in memory of Avril McDonald, who passed away in April 2010. Avril was an inspired and passionate scholar in the fields of international humanitarian law, international criminal law, human rights law and law in the field of arms control and disarmament. What in particular made Avril's work special, was her strong commitment with the human aspects throughout. Fourteen scholars and practitioners have contributed to this liber amicorum, which has led to a rich variety of topics within the disciplines of Avril's expertise. They all have in common that they deal with the human perspectives of the discipline of law at hand. They concentrate on the impact of the developments in international law on humans, whether they are civilians, victims of war or soldiers. This human perspective of law makes this book an appropriate tribute to Avril McDonald and at the same time a unique and valuable contribution to international legal research in the present society. A society that becomes more and more characterized by detailed legal systems, defined by institutions that may frequently lack sufficient contact with the people concerned.
Mariëlle Matthee is a freelance researcher and writer. Brigit Toebes is a Lecturer in International Law at the University of Groningen, the Netherlands. Both Mariëlle Matthee and Brigit Toebes were colleagues of Avril McDonald at the T.M.C. Asser Instituut in The Hague and worked closely with her on several projects. Marcel Brus is Professor of Public International Law at the University of Groningen, at the department where Avril worked during the last years of her life.