A military tribunal or commission is most usually used to refer to a court that asserts jurisdiction over persons who are members of an enemy army, are held in military custody, and are accused of a violation of the laws of war. In contrast, courts-martial generally take jurisdiction over only members of their own military. A military tribunal or commission may still use the rules and procedures of a court-martial, although that is not generally the case.
Military tribunals also, generally speaking, do not assert jurisdiction over people who are acknowledged to be civilians who are alleged to have broken civil or criminal laws. However, military tribunals are sometimes used to try individuals not affiliated with a particular state’s military who are nonetheless accused of being combatants and acting in violation of the laws of war.