ICRC databases on international humanitarian law
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Preamble
    All nations are deeply convinced that war should be banned as a means of settling disputes between human communities.
    However, in view of the need, should hostilities once more break out, of safeguarding the civilian population from the destruction with which it is threatened as a result of technical developments in weapons and methods of warfare,
    The limits placed by the requirements of humanity and the safety of the population on the use of armed force are restated and defined in the following rules.
    In cases not specifically provided for, the civilian population shall continue to enjoy the protection of the general rule set forth in Article 1, and of the principles of international law.


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