Could terrorists and insurgents be considered unlawful combatants?
In such a case would the Geneva Conventions (even the third convention) not protect them?
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The Geneva Convention is an international treaty that (until the W. Bush administration's questionable assertions) only applies to war between recognized sovereign nations. Domestic terrorists and insurrectionists are neither international actors nor sovereign entities, and thus don't fall under its purview.
The only circumstance under which the Convention would naturally apply (i.e., without sketchy, stretched legal arguments) is if a foreign nation engaged in formal conflict had domestic partisans carrying out attacks within enemy territory: e.g., the Russian partisans who attacked in Belogrod in the current Ukraine conflict. Such partisans might be considered lawful or unlawful combatants, depending on their connection and interactions with the foreign state.
There are several different conventions relevant here. Some of them were explicitly written to cover not just the the regular armed forces of countries which recognize each other, but also any military force which complies with the usages of war.
A group of insurgents which
would be considered lawful combatants. Insurgents may or may not meet the requirements. Classic terrorist likely do not meet the criteria, but in recent decades the term 'terrorist' has been misapplied often enough that it has become almost meaningless unless a definition is specified.
Domestic terrorists and insurgents are usually not treated as prisoners of war but as criminals.
In countries that are governed by the rule of law, being considered a (alleged) criminal instead of a POW gives people less rights in some regards (remaining in prison even when the conflict is over, possibly death penalty) while more rights in others (can't be held indefinitely without a trial, right to legal representation). So it's not that obvious in every case which legal status would be preferable.
In more authoritarian countries, alleged terrorists and insurrectionists often don't receive the rights granted to either POWs or defendants in criminal trials.