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National Implementation of International Humanitarian Law: Table of activities in the countries of the Organization of the American States in 1999

07-09-2000

Document prepared by the International Committee of the Red Cross for information to the States members of the Organization of the American States

    

 I. INTRODUCTION  

 II. GENERAL OVERVIEW  

 III. CO-OPERATION BETWEEN THE INTERNATIONAL COMMITTEE OF THE RED CROSS AND  

  REGIONAL ORGANIZATIONS AND ACADEMIC  INSTITUTIONS IN THE AREA OF NATIONAL  

  IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

 IV. IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW IN AMERICA: REPORTS BY  

  COUNTRY  

* * * * *

 I. INTRODUCTION  

The tasks of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) include the promotion of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) and its implementation at national level. To help achieve the common objective of ensuring respect for IHL, the ICRC seeks to secure participation of the largest number of States possible in the Humanitarian Law treaties and, in particular, to help formulate a series of laws and regulations at the domestic level that meet the requirements of those instruments and are conducive to their application. This work is supported since early 1996 by the organization's Advisory Service on International Humanitarian Law whose aim is to offer technical assistance to authorities which require such support.

To create the conditions necessary to ensure respect for IHL, the ICRC delegations in America, helped where necessary by legal experts from the Advisory Service on International Humanitarian Law , continued in 1999 to establish a dialogue with government authorities in order to draw their attention to this matter and offer them any necessary advice.

To underpin these efforts, relations have been maintained with the region's National Red Cross Societies, which enjoy a favoured position vis-à-vis the governments and authorities of their respective countries and often co-operated closely with ICRC.

The present document contains an overview of activities conducted by the ICRC as well as of efforts undertaken and developments that occurred   in countries of America as of 31 December 1999 in relation to International Humanitarian Law and its implementation at national level.

 Note:  

The information contained in this document is similar to that of the 1999 Annual Report of the ICRC'S Advisory Service in IHL but is not identic. The details provided, particularly in the reports by country are not exhaustive and are based only on information communicated to the ICRC.

Additional information may be requested at the Advisory Service on International Humanitarian Law , International Committee of the Red Cross, 19 Ave. de la Paix, CH-1202 Geneva - advisoryservice.gva@icrc.org.

 II. GENERAL OVERVIEW  

 A. Participation in International Humanitarian Law treaties  

(A list indicating the State of participation of OAS'Member States to the relevant IHL treaties as of 15 May 2000 is annexed to this document.)

The ICRC has continued through its delegations in the Americas, to make approaches to States which are not yet party to Protocol I (international armed conflicts) and Protocol II (non-international armed conflicts) additional to the 1949 Geneva Conventions. Within the framework of these measures, States which have not yet done so were encouraged to accept the competence of the International Fact-Finding Commission provided for in Article 90 of Additional Protocol I .  

    

It has further continued to mobilize efforts to promote adhesion to the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property and its Second Protocol adopted in March 1999, the 1980 United Nations Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons together with its   annexed Protoc ols , particularly amended Protocol II ( on Land mines ) and Protocol IV (on Blinding Laser Weapons ) and the ratification of the 1997 Ottawa Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Antipersonnel Mines and on their Destruction .

Ratification of the 1998 Rome Statute for the International Criminal Court was also encouraged.

 In 1999:  

  •  Nicaragua ratified 1977 Additional Protocols I and II and Cuba ratified 1977 Additional Protocol II  

  •  Costa Rica and Panama declared to accept the competence of the International Fact-Finding Commission provided for in Article 90 of Additional Protocol I;

  •  Uruguay  ratified the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property ;  

  •  Brazil ratified amended Protocol II ( Land min es) and Protocol IV ( Blinding Laser Weapons ) of the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention; the 1980 Convention's amended Protocol II was also ratified by Panama and by the United States of America ;

  •  Antigua and Barbuda , Argentina,  Barbados , Brazi l, Costa Rica,  Dominica , Ecuador , El Salvador , Guatemala , Saint Lucia and Venezuela ratified the 1997 Ottawa Convention on Antipersonnel Mines;

  •  Trinidad & Tobago ratified the 1998 Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court 

 B. National laws and regulations for the implementation of International Humanitarian Law (IHL)  

Taking advantage of the process of legislative reform in a number of American countries - particularly in the field of criminal law - the ICRC has urged the adoption, or adaptation of domestic laws and regulations for States to acquire a set of judicial and regulatory instruments consistent with the requirements of the Humanitarian Law treaties. It has offered technical assistance to ensure that sanctions for war crimes and other serious violations of the Humanitarian Law treaties are included in domestic criminal legislation. Similarly, support has been provided for the preparation or amendment of the laws regulating and protecting the use of the red cross/red crescent emblem and other designations protected by IHL , of domestic legislation to implement the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention and the 1997 Ottawa Convention of other IHL implementing regulations, such as those providing for the inclusion of IHL as a mandatory discipline into the official training programs of the Armed and Police Forces and into the pensa of the University careers. 

 In 1999:  

  • Legislation, or amendments to already existing laws to protect the red cross and red crescent emblems (and designations) were proposed for adoption or were in the process of being prepared in Argentina, Bolivia, Costa Rica, Cuba, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay;  

  • Civil and/or military criminal legislation was under review and incorporation of sanctions for br eaches of International Humanitarian Law into the draft revisions being considered in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Panama, Uruguay;  

  • Domestic legislation to implement the 1997 Ottawa Convention on prohibition of Antipersonnel Mines was prepared or in the process to being prepared in Argentina, Colombia and Nicaragua;  

  • The Ministries of Defence and Chiefs of Staff of the Public Forces of Colombia, Cuba, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Peru , Venezuela and Uruguay have issued executive orders or directives making instruction of International Law of Armed Conflicts (ILoAC) mandatory within the official training programs of Armed and Police Forces and, in some cases, providing for the establishment of units and/or offices for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law within the Public Forces;

  • IHL was taught in Law Faculties of Universities and in Academies of Argentina, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, Panama, Peru (partially) as mandatory course. Some universities have offered specific courses in IHL at master level.

 C. National IHL Committees  

In 1999 the ICRC continued in 1999 to promote the establishment of national inter-ministerial/ institutional advisory commissions or committees for the implementation of IHL.

As of December 1999 the following countries of America had set up a National IHL Committee/Commission or appointed a similar body to advise the government on IHL and related issues and co-ordinate the adoption of national IHL implementing measures: Argentina, Bolivia, Canada, Chile, Colombia, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Dominican Republic, Panama, Paraguay, Uruguay, Trinidad & Tobago.  

 Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic formally established an IHL National Committee in 1999. In December 1999 Guatemala approved an executive decree providing for the establishment of a National IHL Committee and Jamaica seriously considered setting up such an advisory body.

 D. Regional and national conferences, workshops and courses  

    

In addition to maintaining regular contacts and mak ing the relevant documentation available, the ICRC organized in June 1999 in San Salvador (El Salvador) in joint co-operation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Comité Inter-institutional de Derecho Internacional Humanitario de El Salvador the Second Regional Seminar on National Implementation of IHL for Central American Countries . The Seminar was attended by members of National IHL Committees and other high ranking officials from 8 countries of the region .

    

To further encourage instruction of International Law of Armed Conflicts (ILOAC) to armed and police forces the ICRC's Regional Delegation for Central America and the Caribbean organized in August 1999 in close co-operation with the Armed Forces of Guatemala the First International ILOAC- Course for Instructors of Air Forces. Air   Force Officers from Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Panama, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador and United States of America as well as Military Attachés from Colombia, Mexico, Venezuela and the United States of America participated in this event.

An International course on Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law for instructors from the Police Forces of Central American countries and the Spanish speaking Caribbean was organized by the ICRC in September 1999 in Panama, in joint co-operation with the Ministry of Interior and Justice. 

    

 National workshops on IHL  among others, were held in Guatemala (March 1999), Panama (May 1999), the Dominican Republic (October 1999), and Nicaragua (in April and in November 1999). These events were organized in close co-operation with the concerned governmental authorities and - where they exist - the National IHL Committees. They involved representatives from different relevant ministries, from parliament, the judiciary, the armed and security forces and from academic circles. They generally aimed at discussing specific matters related to implementation of IHL at national level and at facilitating the exchange of information and experiences made in this field

    

    

 E. Meetings of experts  

To advise the concerned authorities more effectively about specific national IHL implementing measures and to exchange ideas on matters of interest related to it since 1996 the ICRC has organized the following meetings of experts which were attended by experts from OAS'Member States: Meeting of experts on committees or other bodies for the national implementation of IHL    (October 1996), Meeting of experts on the national repression of violations of IHL (September 1997), Meeting of experts on the enforcement of IHL through criminal legislation for Common law experts (November 1998) .  

    

An experts'meeting which was specifically designed for legal experts from Ibero-American countries was organized by the ICRC in co-operation with the Spanish Red Cross Society and the Bar Association of Madrid (Colegio de Abogados de Madrid) in March 1999 in Madrid (Spain). The    Meeting of experts on the adaptation of domestic legislation to incorporate punishment for breaches of IHL    was attended by experts, including legal practitioners (judges, magistrates, civil and military prosecutors, attorneys and government officials) from Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chilli, Colombia, Cuba, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, Panama, Peru and Spain . The Director of the Department for Legal Co-operation of the Secretariat of the OAS was invited to participated in the meeting. It focused on the elements that must be considered when bringing national criminal legislation in line with obligations under IHL and related technical questions. Besides exchanging views and experiences made in the field of prosecution of war criminals, the experts were also given the opportunity to examine and discuss the 1998 Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (a report of the meeting is being prepared and will be made available to interested persons and authorities in due time) .

    

 F. Celebration of the 50th anniversary of the 1949 Geneva Conventions and the XXVIIth International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent  

    

The year 1999 had special significance for International Humanitarian Law as the 50th anniversary of the Geneva Conventions was celebrated on 12 August. In many America countries workhops, academic and public debates, conferences and experts meetings on issues relating to IHL were organized by the authorities to mark this event, often in joint co-operation with the National Red Cross Societies, Academic Institutions and the ICRC.

The 27th Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent took place in Geneva from 31 October to 6 November 1999 and was another " highlight " for IHL but more specifically for the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. The Conference adopted five Resolutions including a solemn Declaration and Plan of Action for the years 2000-2003. Furthermore, the members of the Conference, acting independently or in co-operation, pledged to fulfil specific humanitarian commitments during this period: a total of 387 were made by 163 Red Cross and Red Crescent Socie ties, the International Committee of the Red Cross and the International Federation, 85 governments and 9 observers.

The governments of the following American countries made specific pledges relating to protection of victims through respect of IHL and through adherence to particular IHL treaties and their enforcement on a domestic level:

 Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Peru, United States of America, Uruguay, Venezuela  (the pledges can be consulted on the conference's Web Site: http://www.redcross.alertnet.org/en/conference/pledges.asp)

    

The official proceedings of the Conference were supplemented by workshops, providing an informal setting for discussion of various topics related to the Conference, including implementation of IHL, mechanisms to enhance respect thereof and the International Criminal Court.

 III. CO-OPERATION WITH REGIONAL ORGANIZATIONS AND ACADEMIC INSTITUTIONS IN THE AREA OF DISSEMINATION AND NATIONAL IMPLEMENTATION OF IHL  

 A. Organization of American States (OAS)  

    

The ICRC attends the OAS General Assembly on a regular basis, having been accorded the status of special guest . At the last six General Assemblies (Brazil in 1994, Haiti in 1995, Panama in 1996, Peru in 1997, Venezuela in 1998, Guatemala in 1999), the OAS pledged, in Resolutions on respect for IHL [1 ] adopted by its First Committee (Juridical and Political Matters), to urge member States to study the possibility of ratifying the instruments of IHL, to promote the widest possible dissemination of IHL, to adopt national implementation measures to enforce IHL and prevent violations thereof and to establish specific national advisory structures to facilitate and co-ordinate these tasks.

 In May 1996 the President of the ICRC and the Secretary-general of the OAS signed an agreement whereby the two institutions pledged to co-operate in areas of common interest, particularly for the promotion, implementation and dissemination of IHL.

 Specific co-operation activities in 1999  :  

    

 In March 1999 the ICRC President was invited to make a presentation before the OAS's Commission of Juridical and Political Affairs on the promotion and respect of IHL in the OAS'Member States. During the meeting a document prepared by the Advisory Service on IHL on the progress made by American States in the field of IHL national implementation was discussed by the members of the Commission. Several delegations informed on efforts undertaken by their governments to fulfill their obligations in the field of IHL and enhance respect thereof and acknowledged the support offered by the ICRC.

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the 1949 Geneva Conventions a special seminar for diplomats and academics was jointly organized by the ICRC and the Secretariat of the OAS at the latter's headquarters on 25 October 1999. The Vice-president of the ICRC and several high ranking representatives from OAS'Member countries participated in the event that offered an opportunity to debate, among other topics related to IHL and to the humanitarian action, on the 1998 Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

    

    

 B. Inter-American Commission and Inter-American Court on Human Rights  

    

In November 1999 the ICRC participated in a two days seminar organized on occasion of the Commemoration of the 30th Anniversary of the American Convention on Human Rights and the 20th Anniversary of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights. An analisis of the principal achievements and obstacles in efforts undertaken towards the respect of Human Rights in the continent and the main challenges that this Institutions faces for the XXI Century was drawn up and discussed.    

    

    

 C.      Regional parliamentary organizations  

    

  •  Latin American Parliament (PARLATINO  )  

 In June 1999 the President of the Human Rights Commission of the PARLATINO took part in the second Regional seminar on national measures for the implementation of IHL , which was hel d in El Salvador. A dialogue was initiated by the ICRC and the PARLATINO's Human Rights Commission with a view to exploring ways of possible co-operation to better promote IHL among Parliamentarians of its Member States.

  •  Central American Parliament (PARLACEN)  .  

A co-operation agreement was signed between the ICRC and the PARLACEN in.September 1998. This agreement aims at creating opportunities for sensitizing Parliamentarians for IHL and related issues. Its objective is also to reinforce co-ordination and co-operation between the PARLACEN and the ICRC with regards to activities related to dissemination and implementation of IHL among Parliamentarians.

In June 1999 a member of the PARLACEN took part in the second Regional seminar on national measures for the implementation of IHL , which was held in San Salvador.

In November 1999 the Human Rights Commission of the PARLACEN participated in the organization in Nicaragua, of a National Seminar on the repression of war crimes and other serious violations of IHL which resulted in the drafting of a comprehensive chapter on war crimes to be included into the Nicaraguan Penal Code.

  •  Andean Parliament  

The ICRC continued to develop contacts and consulted with representatives of the Andean Parliament with a view to raising awareness in the parliaments of the Andean countries of the importance of universal adherence to the humanitarian treaties and the need to adopt national measures, particularly legislative instruments, to give the treaties domestic legal effect once they have been ratified.

 D. Inter-American Institute for Human Rights (IIDH)  

    

The ICRC has maintained relations with the Inter-American Institute of Human Rights since it was founded on the basis of a co-operation agreement signed in San José, Costa Rica, in 1985 and a Protocol annexed to the original agreement in 1991. This co-operation agreement was reconfirmed and amended in 1998.

Under these agreements, the parties undertook to co-operate with each other in their respective areas of activity, on joint projects, and in the organization of events relating to the promotion of IHL, International Human Rights Law and International Refugee Law and their implementation and enforcement at the national level.

The ICRC was invited in February 1999 to participate to the II Regional Course on Human Rights and Indigenous People that was organized by the IIDH in Guatemala. It participated in June 1999 in San José, Costa Rica at the XXVIII Interdisciplinary Course on Human Rights and made a contribution on the topic of IHL and the challenges that it faces . The IIDH was invited to participate and contribute at the National Course on IHL for University Professors of the Escuela libre de Derecho that was organized in October 1999 in Guatemala and at the First Regional Advanced Course in IHL for University Professors from Central American Countries organized by the ICRC in November 1999 in La Havana, Cuba .

 E. Organization of the Commonwealth     

The ICRC's Advisory Service on IHL participated, as an observer, in the Commonwealth Law Ministers'Meeting that was held in Port of Spain (Trinidad Tobago) in May 1999. Common Law Ministers considered ratification and implementation of IHL treaties in Commonwealth Member States, on the basis of a paper prepared by the Advisory Services. A Communiqué issued by the Law Ministers as the conclusion of the Meeting encouraged Commonwealth States to make further progress in ratifying and implementing the relevant conventions and welcomed the offer of the ICRC to provide advice and assistance in that regard. The Communiqué also contained a paragraph on the International Criminal Court

    

    

 * * * * *  

 IV. IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW: REPORTS BY COUNTRY  

 ARGENTINA  

    

  TREATY PARTICIPATION  

Argentina is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols (and has made a declaration pursuant to Article 90 of 1977 Additional Protocol I, recognizing the competence of the International Fact-finding Commission), the 1954 Cultural Property Convention, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1976 Environmental Modification Techniques Convention, the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention and its Protocols I, II (amended version) III and IV, the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention and the 1997 Ottawa Convention (ratified in September 1999).

    

    

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

Use of the red cross and red crescent emblems (and designations) is governed by the: Ley no 2976 sobre el uso del emblema,el nombre y las insignias de la Sociedad Argentina de la Cruz Roja. A draft revision thereof, prepared by the " Commission Nacional de Aplicacion del DIH " (CADIH), was submitted to National Congress after having obtained approval by the Chamber of Deputies.

A draft revision of the Military Code of Justice that provides for punishment of violations of IHL is pending for approval by the National Congress. A specific draft law complementary to the Penal Code to punish breaches of IHL is in the process of being prepared.

The Direction of International Security, Nuclear and Special Affairs (DIGAN) of the Ministry of foreign Affairs, International Trade and Worship proposed and submitted for adoption a series of draft provisions related to the 1980 Conventional Weapons and the 1997 Ottawa Conventions to be included into the Penal Code. The Advisory service analysed and commented the draft provisions.

    

In 1999 a draft law granting " constitutional level "  to the Geneva Conventions and draft laws on the Protocol on Cultural Property and the 1998 Rome Statute were submitted to the Congress for approval.

    

 Other Implementation Measures  

In 1999 IHL was taught at the Law Faculties of most of the Country's Universities as part of International Public Law. Some Law Faculties organized postgraduate master courses in IHL.

Cultural property to be protected in times of armed conflict is in the process of being inventoried by the CADIH.

    

 National IHL Committee  

    

Argentina has had a national IHL Committee since 1992: Comisión Nacional de Aplicación del DIH (CADIH) Its function is to promote dissemination and implementation of IHL. In 1999 the ICRC provided information on IHL and technical advice to the CADIH.

On 14 and 15 October 1999 the CADIH participated in the Second bilateral meeting of the national IHL Committees of Argentina and Chile that was held in Santiago, Chile.

 BOLIVIA  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

Bolivia is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols (and has made a declaration pursuant to Article 90 of 1977 Additional Protocol I, recognizing the competence of the International Fact-finding Commission), the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention and the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention and the 1997 Ottawa Convention.

    

    

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

Legislation on the use and protection of the red cross and red crescent emblems (and designations) has been prepared by the "Comisión Nacional Permanente para la Aplicación del DIH " (CNPADIH). The Advisory Service analysed and commented a draft emblem law.

Bolivia's criminal legislation is currently under review. The CNPADIH initiated a study with a view to asses the conformity of the present Penal Code with the requirements of IHL and prepare draft amendments to include sanctions for breaches of IHL into the revised Code. The Ministry of Defense announced in the framework of the CNPADIH its intention to revise the Military Justice Code in order to complete it with comprehensive sanctions for war crimes.

    

 Other Implementation Measures  

The CNPADIH initiated a study with a view to prepare ratification of the 1954 Cultural Property Convention by Bolivia. The Advisory Service provided advice in relation to the financial and practical implications of such ratification.

In 1999 Bolivian military auth orities began to implement measures to provide IHL training to the armed forces as part of their program at military academies and institutions.

 National IHL Committee  

    

    

Bolivia has had a national IHL Committee since 1992: Comisión Nacional Permanente para la Aplicación del DIH (CNPADIH). The Committee's mandate was renewed in 1998 by Supreme Resolution no. 21.845 of August 1998 and its composition was extended. It has the mandate to guarantee effective implementation of IHL in Bolivia and propose measures to be adopted to give effect to IHL treaties and disseminate knowledge thereof. It works through 4 subcommittees (revision of the Penal Code, emblem, protection of cultural property, implementing legislation) and met 4 times in 1999.

In 1999 the ICRC participated in the CNPADIH's meetings, trained its members in IHL assisted with the definition of its plan of action, facilitated information of comparative law and provided technical assistance.

 BRAZIL  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

Brazil is a pa rty to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols (and has made a declaration pursuant to Article 90 of 1977 Additional Protocol I, recognizing the competence of the International Fact-finding Commission), the 1954 Cultural Property Convention, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1976 Environmental Modification Techniques Convention, the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention and its Protocols I, II (amended version) III and IV, the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention and the 1997 Ottawa Convention.

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

 Legislation  

Use of the red cross and red crescent emblems (and designations) is governed by Decree no. 2380 of 1910, Law no. 3960 of 1961 and Law no. 966 of 1962.  

Brazilians authorities are considering to review and reformulate the Military Penal Code, however, no concrete steps have been taken as yet to this effect.

    

    

 Other Implementation Measures  

Regard ing how instruction on IHL within the Armed Forces a regular co-operation relation exists between ICRC and three military units: the Superior School for Air Force officers, the Naval War College, and the Command of land operations of the Army, which is in charge of the preparation of military contingents sent on peace missions.

The ICRC started in 1998 a long term project (two years) related to dissemination of humanitarian and human rights principles to the main police force of Brazil: the Military Police. The project, which will be completed by mid 2000, aims at training 850 Military Police officers throughout the country, through a multiplication process, mainly in the field of those human rights norms related to the powers of law enforcement agencies, with particular emphasis on the norms that have to do with the use of force and fire arms, maintenance of public order, arrest and detention.

A comparative study of national law from the standpoint of IHL is in the process of being prepared by a local legal expert.

    

    

 CANADA  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

Canada is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols (and has made a declaration pursuant to Article 90 of Protoc ol I, recognizing the competence of the International Fact-finding Commission), the 1954 Cultural Property Convention, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1976 Environmental Modification Techniques Convention, the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention and its four protocols (including Amended Protocol II), the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention and the 1997 Ottawa Convention.

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

 Legislation  

Canada has national legislation to give effect to the Geneva Conventions and Additional Protocol I ( Geneva Conventions Act 1965 ), implementing legislation for the Ottawa Convention ( Antipersonnel Mines Convention Implementation Act 1997 ) and emblem protection legislation (the Trade Marks Act 1952 ).

Canada signed the Statute of the International Criminal Court in December 1998. National implementing legislation, the Crimes Against Humanity Act , was submitted to Parliament in December 1999. The Act will create new offences of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes, and breach of responsibility by military commanders and civilian superiors. It will also create new offences to protect the administration of justice of the Court, as well as the safety of judges, officials and witnesses. It will create new proceeds of crime offences and mechanisms to enforce orders of the Court for the restraint and forfeiture of assets.

The Crimes Against Humanity Act implements Canada's obligations under the Statute to surrender persons soug ht by the Court for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. It also prevents a person who is the subject of a request for surrender by the Court from claiming immunity. It will complement recent amendments to the Extradition Act, which allow for and facilitate the extradition of persons accused of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes to international criminal courts and tribunals.

 Other Implementation Measures  

The Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade's Peace building and Human Security Programme has contributed to a joint project of the International Centre for Criminal Law Reform and Criminal Justice Policy and the International Centre for Human Rights and Democratic Development. The project is the development and dissemination of practical tools to assist States in their efforts to ratify and implement the Statute of the International Criminal Court. The two Centres are working to produce a Ratification and Implementation Manual for the Statute of the International Criminal Court.

 National IHL Committee  

Canada's national IHL committee, the Canadian National Committee on Humanitarian Law, was established in March 1998 pursuant to a Memorandum of Understanding between the Departments of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, National Defence and Justice, the Canadian Mounted Police, the Canadian International Development Agency and the Canadian Red Cross Society. The Committee's main functions will be to facilitate implementation of IHL and to offer advice on dissemination.

    

    

 MEMBER STATES OF THE CARICOM (Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Surinam, )  

(Jamaica and Trinidad & Tobago are not included because subject to an individual report contained in this document.)

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

 Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Haiti, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Surinam, Guyana are a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols.

 Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia are also party to the the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention; Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, to the 1976 Environmental Modificaton Techniques Convention and Guyana and Saint Lucia to the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention.

 Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis and Saint Lucia are also party to the 1997 Ottawa Convention (whereof Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Dominica and Saint Lucia have ratified the Convention in 1999).

 Trinidad & Tobago has ratified the 1998 Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court in April 1999.

    

 NATIONAL IHL IMPLEMENTATION  

 Other Implementation Measures  

The ICRC Regional delegation for Central America and the Caribbean continued in 1999 its efforts with a view to ensure that dissemination of IHL and implementation of IHL treaties at the domestic level remain topical issue through dissemination activities, including the organization of conferences and seminars for both civilian and military circles.

In 1999 International Law of Armed Conflict started to be taught to Armed and Police Forces of several CARICOM Member States as part of the official training programs in military academies and institutions.

The ICRC, in joint co-operation with the Ministry for National Security of Jamaica, organized from 30 August to 3 September 1999 the First International Course of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law for Police instructors which was attended by officers from Saint Lucia, Grenada, Bahamas, Barbados, Dominica, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, St. Kitts & Nevis, Surinam and Trinidad & Tobago. A first training course for Armed Forces'instructors from Caribbean Countries was held in Trinidad & Tobago in October 1999.

    

    

 CHILE  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

Chile is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols (and has made a declaration pursuant to Article 90 of 1977 Additional Protocol I, recognizing the competence of the International Fact-finding Commission), the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1976 Environmental Modification Techniques Convention and the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention.

    

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

Use of the red cross and red crescent emblems (and designations) is governed by Law no 19511   that amends Ley no. 6371 sobre protección al emblema de la Cruz Roja.  

Chile's criminal legislation is currently under review. An inter ministerial working group was mandated to prepare draft legislation on sanctions for breaches of IHL to be included into the revised Military and the Ordinary Penal Codes. A study on the topic was requested to the Dept. of Law of the University of Chile. The Advisory Service facilitated specific documentation on the topic and offered technical advice.

    

 Other Implementation Measures  

In 1999 IHL training was provided to the armed forces as part of their program at military academies and institutions.

Consultations were conducted by the "Comisión Nacional de Derecho Humanitario" (CNDH) with the Ministry of Education with a view to have IHL incorporated into the medium/secondary level teaching programs.

 National IHL Committee  

    

Chile has had a national IHL Committee since 1994: Comisión Nacional de Derecho Humanitario (CNDH). Its function is to study and propose to the competent authorities measures to be adopted in order to give effect to the Geneva Conventions and Additional Protocols in Chile and to prepare draft implementing legislation and regulations. It establishes annual reports of its activities. In 1999 the CNDH met on several occasions. The ICRC assisted its work through specific documentation and technical advice.

On 14 and 15 October 1999 the CNDH organized in Santiago the Second bilateral meeting of the national IHL Committees of Argentina and Chile. The meeting   allowed the members of the national IHL Committees of the neighbouring countries to revise progresses made in the field of IHL national implementation and underline that this topic is considered as forming part of the agenda of their global bilateral dialogue.   The ICRC was invited to participate in the meeting as an observer.

    

    

 COLOMBIA  

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

    

    

Colombia is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols (and has mad e a declaration pursuant to Article 90 of 1977 Additional Protocol I, recognizing the competence of the International Fact-Finding Commission), the 1954 Cultural Property Convention and the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention.

    

    

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

    

    

Use of the red cross and red crescent emblems (and designations) is governed by a Decreto Presidential   no 860 de Mayo de 1998 por el cual se reglamenta lo relativo a la protección y el uso que darse al nombre y el emblema de la Cruz Roja, se protegen sus actividades y se facilita la prestación de los servicios humanitarios en Colombia. A law on the issue is being prepared by the Colombian Red Cross with the assistance of ICRC.

Colombia's criminal legislation is under reform. A revised version of the Military Justice Code was adopted by law no. 522 of August 1999 and will enter into force in August 2000. It provides for the punishment of the crime of genocide and of certain serious violations of IHL. A revised version of the Penal Code was approved by the Nations'Congress in December 1 999. While it includes a comprehensive chapter on sanctions for the crime of genocide, crimes against humanity and violations of IHL, 85 provisions were objected by the President of the Republic for inconvenience and unconstitutionality. A proposal of amendments in order to make these provisions acceptable was submitted to Congress for examination and approval.

A draft law decree providing in a more specific manner for punishment of the crimes of genocide, torture, forced disappearance and forced displacement and that applies to these crimes more severe penalties than the Penal Code was approved by the National Congress in December 1999 but also objected by the President and returned to Congress for re-examination.

A law-decree allowing for ratification of the 1997 Ottawa treaty and another one relating to the ratification of the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention and its Protocols are being prepared.

 Other Implementation Measures  

    

    

 Presidential order 05 of 28.12.91 makes training of IHL to the Public Forces mandatory. By Directives 017 of 1994 and 024 of July 1995 the Ministry of Defence established an office for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law and ordered the establishment of similar offices within all units of the Public Forces. A series of further orders and directives issued by the Ministry of Defence - the last in 1999 - reconfirmed that instruction in International Law of Armed Conflicts (ILOAC) is a mandatory disciplin e of the official training programs within the armed and public forces.

Efforts were continued in 1999 and University Professors trained with a view to have IHL included in the pensa of the Law Faculties of the Country's Universities.

 National IHL Committee  

    

    

Colombia had established a national IHL Committee in 1996: Commission gubernamental para la humanización del conflicto armado interno y la aplicación del DIH en Colombia. A proposal to re-define its mandate and review its composition was made by the Presidency.

    

    

 COSTA RICA  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

    

    

Costa Rica is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols (and has made a declaration pursuant to Article 90 of 1977 Additional Protocol I, recognizing the competence of the International Fact-Finding Commission in December 1999, 1954 Cultural Property Convention, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1976 Environmental Modification Techniques Convention, the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention and its Protocols I, II (as amended in 1996), III and IV, the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention and the 1997 Ottawa Treaty (ratified in March 1999).

    

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

    

    

Use of the red cross and red crescent emblems (and designations) is governed by an emblem law: Ley no. 7701 sobre protección del emblema de la cruz roja . A draft revision to bring this law in line with requirements under IHL was prepared by the Ministry of Justice with the technical assistance of the ICRC and submitted for adoption.

Costa Ricas is currently reviewing its criminal legislation. Two draft revisions of the Penal Code were prepared, one by the Judiciary and the other by the Legislative Assembly. Consultations between the ICRC and the respective drafting-committees were held with a view to include sanctions for grave breaches of IHL into the revised Penal Code and technical assistance offered by the Advisory Service.

 Other Implementation Measures  

    

    

The ICRC provided advice in relation to the financial and practical implications of recognition of the International Fact-Finding Commission

An analyses of the present state of play with regards to IHL implementing measures in Costa Rica was prepared by the Institute of Foreign Service " Manuel María de Peralta " .

Incorporation of IHL in the official programmes of Universities and the Regional Institute for Foreign Service continued to be encouraged. In 1999 IHL was taught at the Universidad Escuela Libre de Derecho as a mandatory course.

Since October 1998 an office in charge of Instruction of International Law of Armed Conflicts (ILOAC) exists within the G3 of the Public Forces.

During 1999 the ICRC met on several occasions with the ad hoc Committee for the study of the Rome Statute with a view t o present the relevance of national and international repression of breaches of IHL and facilitate technical   information on the subject.

 CUBA [2 ]

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

    

    

Cuba is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols, the 1954 Cultural Property Convention, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1976 Environmental Modification Techniques Convention, the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention and its Protocols I, II and III, the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention.

Cuba ratified the 1977 Additional Protocol II in June 1999.

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

    

    

A draft law to protect the red cross/red crescent emblems (and designations) is was prepared in 1999 by the Cuban Red Cross with the assistance of the Advisory Service and is in the process of being submitted to the concerned authorities for consultation and approval.

The Ordinary Penal Code provides for the punishment of the crime of genocide and certain grave breaches of IHL. The Ley de delitos militares of 1979 (section 12 thereof in particular) provide for punishment of certain grave breaches of IHL committed by military personel.

The Ley de Defensa nacional contains provisions on the system in place for civil defence and provides for the protection of cultural property in times of war.

 Other Implementation Measures  

    

    

A Research Center for IHL, Centro de Estudio del Derecho Internacional Humanitario (CEDIH) de la Cruz Roja Cubana, was established in 1994 as a non governmental organization   to promote knowledge and national implementation of IHL i n Cuba. Its activities include training of civil and military experts in IHL, preparation of teaching material on IHL for different public and levels and dissemination of IHL to Armed Forces, the Police and to civil authorities. It also runs a research and documentation Centre for IHL which is open to researchers, students and other interested persons.

Following Order no. 150 of 1997 issued by the Ministry and the Chief of Staff of the Revolutionary Armed Forces International Law of Armed Conflicts (ILoAC) is taught as mandatory part of the official training programs of all persons participating in the National Defence. Plans of action to implement said Order are issued on an annual basis.

 DOMINICAN REPUBLIC  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

    

    

The Dominican Republic is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols, the 1954 Cultural Property Convention and the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention.

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

    

    

Legislation to regulate the use of the red cross and red crescent emblem (and designations) is in the process of being prepared by the National IHL Committee.

 National IHL Committee  

    

    

By Executive-Decree no. 4688 of 30 March 1999 the Dominican Republic formally established a national IHL Committee: Comisión National Permanente para la Aplicación y el Seguimiento del DIH. The Committee was officially installed by the President of the Republic in June 1999. Its functions include to recommend measures to be taken to improve national implementation of IHL and prepare draft laws and regulations, TO disseminate IHL to authorities and generally and promote incorporation of IHL in official teaching programs. The Committee includes representatives from all Government Ministries, the National Police, the National Council for Superior Education, the legal adviser of the Executive and the National Red Cross.   In 1999 the it met on 4 occasions.    

The ICRC assisted the authorities with the establishment of the National IHL Committee. It organized, among others, in October 1999 a training workshop on IHL for its members.

On 9 December the ICRC'Regional Delegation for Central America and the Carribean and the Dominican Red Cross organized a half-day national seminar on IHL and its implementation for the National IHL Committee and other officials.

 EL SALVADOR  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

El Salvador is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention and the 1997 Ottawa Convention.

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

Use of the red cross/red crescent emblems (and designations) is governed by the Decree-Law no. 789 of 1994 , Ley de Protección del Emblema de la Cruz Roja. The Comité Inter-institucional de Derecho Internacional Humanitario de ElSalvador (CIDIH-ES) prepared a draft revision thereof which is in the process of being adopted. The Advisory Service analysed the proposed amendments and provided advice in relation to its drafting.

The Military Justice and the Penal Codes provide for punishment of certain serious breaches of IHL. The CIDIH-ES prepared draft amendments on sanctions for breaches of IHL to bring the Penal Code in line with the requirements of IHL and submitted them for adoption. The Advisory Service analysed the proposed amendments and assisted with their final drafting. 

By Decree-Law no. 685, the National Assembly approved in October 1999 the ratification of the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention and of its 4 Protocols.

 Other Implementation Measures  

The CIDIH-ES made efforts to have IHL included into the pensa of all the Country's Law Faculties. In 1999, IHL was taught at the Law Faculty of the University of El Salvador as a mandatory discipline of the Master course on Human Rights and Education for Peace.

Based on an Orde r issued by the Armed and Security Forces'Chief of Staff International Law of Armed Conflicts (ILOAC) was taught in 1999 as part of the lather's training programs.

A study of national law, Catálogo de medidas adoptadas por el Estado salvadoreño en cumplimineto de las normas de DIH was prepared by a team of legal experts from the Centroamerican University " José Simeón Cañas " .

In June 1999 the ICRC and the CIDIH-ES organized in San Salvador the Second regional meeting for National IHL Committees of Central American Countries  on national IHL implementing measures . High-ranking officials from 8 countries could share views and information on progress realized in their countries in the field of IHL national implementation. Specific topics related to IHL were also addressed and the Rome Statute for the ICC d iscussed.

 National IHL Committee  

El Salvador has had a national IHL Committee since 1997: Comité Inter- institucional de Derecho Internacional Humanitario de El Salvador (CIDIH-ES). It advises the government on IHL treaties, implementing measures and dissemination and works through 2 subcommittees. In 1999 the CIDIH-ES met monthly and its subcommittees weekly. It reports on its activities to the government on a annual basis. The Advisory Service trained CIDIH-ES's members in IHL, assisted them with information on specific IHL related topics and of comparative law and provided technical advice for the drafting of legislation.

 ECUADOR  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

Ecuador is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols, the 1954 Cultural Property Convention, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention and its Protocols I, II and III, the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention and the 1997 Ottawa Convention (ratified in April 1999).

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

Use of the red cross and red crescent emblems (and designations) is governed by the: Decreto Legislativo no. 893 of 1923 sobre el uso del emblema de la cruz roja, which was completed by   the Reglamento 362 of 1972 . A revision of this legislation is being considered.

 Other Implementation Measures  

In 1999, as in the previous years, IHL training was provided to the armed forces as part of their program at military academies and institutions by the Ecuadorian Red Cross, with the support of the ICRC.

A long term project (two years) was launched by the ICRC aiming at training officers of the National Police in the field of Human Rights norms related to the powers of law enforcement agencies, particularly concerning the use of force and fire arms, maintenance of public order, arrest and detention. The project aims at training some 300 National Police officers in those subjects until the end of 2001 through a multiplication process (train the trainers).

A comparative study is underway, carried out by a local legal expert aiming at determining the adequation of the national law with Ecuador international obligations as a party to the Geneva Conventions and Additional Protocols.

 National IHL Committee  

    

    

Even though Ecuador does not have a national IHL Committee or similar advisory body so far, the authorities are ready to consider the establishment of such a body as soon as the conclusions drawn in the afore mentioned comparative study will be known.

 GUATEMALA  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

Guatemala is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols, the 1954 Cultural Property Convention, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1976 Environmental Modification Techniques Convention, the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention and its Protocols I, II and III and the 1997 Ottawa Convention.

    

    

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

Use of the use of the red cross and red crescent emblems and designations is governed by the Ley de protección y uso del emblema de la cruz roja adopted by Legislative-Decree no. 102-97.

Pursuant to the ratification of the 1997 Ottawa Treaty Guatemala adopted legislation to give effect to its provisions in national law, Ley para la prohibición de la producción, compra, venta, importación, exportación transito, utilización y posesion de minas antipresonales y de dispositivos antidetectores o de partes de tales artefactos, adopted by Legislative- Decree 106-97.

 Other Implementation Measures  

IHL was taught in 1999 as an optional course of one month duration and at the Masters level at the University Rafael Landívar and as an optional discipline at the University of San Carlos. The latter University also organized in 1999 in co-operation with the ICRC Regional Delegation a training course on IHL for University Professors.

International Law of Armed Conflicts (ILoAC) forms part of the instruction programs of Armed Forces and of the training programs of the Centro de Estudios Militares.  

 National IHL Committee  

    

    

By governmental agreement of the Council of Ministers no. 948-99 of 28 December 1999 Guatemala approved the establishment of a national IHL Committee, Comisión Guatemalteca para la aplicación del Derecho Internacional Humanitario. It will be the Committee's mandate to recommend to the G overnment the measures to be taken to give effect to the provisions of IHL treaties, to propose drafts for implementing legislation, to disseminate IHL among the authorities and generally and to propose to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs its members for representing Guatemala in international events related to IHL or propose any other action that contributes to enhance respect of IHL in Guatemala. The Committee will include representatives from all the Government Ministries, the Secretariat for Peace, the Judiciary, the Human Rights Defender and Attorney General as well as the Bar Association and, as an observer, the National Red Cross Society.

    

The ICRC assisted the authorities with the establishment of the National IHL Committee. It organized, among others, in March 1999 a training workshop on IHL and its national implementation for the Committee's future members.

 HONDURAS  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

    

Honduras is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols, the 1954 Cultural Property Convention, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, and the 1997 Ottawa Convention

    

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

 Legislation  

    

Use of the use of the red cross and red crescent emblems (and designations) is governed by the Decree no. 32 Ley de protección del emblema y el nombre de la Cruz Roja Hondureña. A draft revision of this law to bring it in line with the requirements of the Geneva Conventions and Protocols and improve protection of the emblem was prepared in 1999 with the assistance of the ICRC and submitted to the Congress of the Republic for examination and approval.

    

A draft law on the prohibition of Antipersonnel Mines is being prepared by the Congress'Commissions of Human Rights and of Foreign Relations. The ICRC's advice was requested for the drafting of said legislation.

    

A reform of Honduras criminal legislation is under way. The incorporation of a chapter on sanctions for serious violations of IHL is being considered by the Committee in charge of preparing a new Penal Code.    

    

 Other Implementation Measures  

    

A Centre of Humanitarian Law - Centro de Derecho Humanitario - was established in 1999 within the Armed Forces of Honduras with a view to co-ordinate programs for the instruction of International Law of Armed Conflicts (ILoAC) at all levels among said Forces.

    

 National IHL Committee  

    

The establishment of a National advisory body for IHL is being considered by the Ministry of Foreign Relations.

    

    

 JAMAICA  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

Jamaica is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, and the 1997 Ottawa Convention.

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

The Jamaica Red Cross Society Act, 1964 permits use of the red cross emblem by the Jamaica Red Cross Society (JRCS) and creates an offence of displaying the emblem to induce a belief that a person is a member of the JRCS or qualified in first aid. The protection which the Act provides for the emblem should not be restricted to a prohibition on use for the purpose of inducing a belief that a person is a member of the JRCS or qualified in first aid. Jamaican law should also protect use of the red crescent emblem, and the civil defence sign and the electronic signals established by Additional Protocol I.

 National IHL Committee  

In 1997, the Jamaica Red Cross Society prepared a draft Cabinet submission for the establishment of an Inter-Institutional National Advisory Body for the Implementation of International Humanitarian Law in Jamaica and the Protection of the Red Cross Emblem. The Advisory Service comments on the document were included in a version which was submitted to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. It was received by the Ministry and is being considered. The last meeting of Advisory Board was in March 1999.

    

    

 MEXICO  

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

Mexico is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocol I, the 1954 Cultural Property Convention, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention and its Protocols I, II, III and IV, the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention and the 1997 Ottawa Convention.

    

    

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

A draft law governing the use of the red cross and red crescent emblem (and designations) is being prepared by the Mexican Red Cross Society and the concerned authorities.

The Penal Code of the Federal District in matters of common jurisdiction and of the Republic in matters of Federal Jurisdiction provide for punishment for crimes against humanity and the crime of genocide. A Special Law adopted in 1991 sanctions the crime of torture.

The Military Justice Code contains a chapter on crimes against International Law that provides for punishment of certain grave breaches of IHL.

 Other Implementation Measures  

In 1999 IHL was taught to 40 military zones of the country as part of comprehensive training program on " The armed forces and Human Rights " conducted between April and December under co-ordination of the Mexican National Human Rights Commission.

In 1999 IHL was taught to members of the Judicial Federal Police and to the investigators and auxiliaries of the General Prosecutor as part of their training program.

Since 1998 training workshops on IHL were organized throughout the country for University professors teaching International Law and/or International Relations. IHL was included as mandatory course in several post graduate University programs.

 NICARAGUA  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

Nicaragua is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols, the 1954 Cultural Property Convention, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention and the 1997 Ottawa Convention.

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

The Penal Code provides for the punishment of war crimes - committed in time of international or non-international armed conflicts - and the crime of genocide in application of universal jurisdiction. Provisional Law on Military Offences (Decree no. 600) which functions as lex specialis to the Penal Code provides for punishment of certain breaches of IHL committed by military personn el. Nicaraguas criminal legislation is currently under review.

A workshop for the Committees of Justice and of Human Rights of the National Assembly took place in November 1999. It discussed matters related to punishment of breaches of IHL. Pursuant to the workshop, the National Assembly's Committee of Justice prepared a draft amendment of the Penal Code's Chapter referring to crimes against the International Order which provides punishment for war crimes and other breaches of IHL. The draft that aims at bringing the Penal Code in line with requirements under IHL was submitted to the Advisory Service for analyses and comments. 

 Other Implementation Measures  

On 17 May 1999 the ICRC organized a workshop for the members of the National Assembly's Committees of Human Rights and of Foreign Affairs to sensitize them for issues related to IHL and to discuss the provisions of the 1977 Additional Protocols and the 1980 Weapons Convention.

In 1999 instruction of International Law of Armed Conflicts (ILoAC) was provided to the Armed Forces and within military academies as part of their official training programs.

 National IHL Committee  

A national IHL Committee Comisión Nacional para la Aplicación del Derecho Internacional Humanitario was established by Decree no. 54-99 of 23 April 1999. The Committee includes representatives of all Government Ministries, the National Assembly's Committees of Human Rights and of Foreign Affairs, the High Court, the country's Universities and the Red Cross Society. Its function is to advice the authorities with all questions related to ratification of IHL treaties, their implementation in domestic law and dissemination thereof. 

On 16 November 1999 the ICRC and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs organized a national seminar on implementation of IHL for the members of the newly established IHL Committee and other interested governement officials. The current state of implementation of IHL in Nicaragua was examined and a possible plan of action to bring the domestic order in line with obligations under IHL discussed.

 PANAMA  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

Panama is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols (and recognized the competence of the International Fact-Finding Commission, Article 90, 1977 Protocol I), the 1954 Cultural Property Convention, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention and its Protocols I, II (as amended in 1996), III and IV, the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention and the 1997 Ottawa Treaty.

    

    

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

A draft law to protect the red cross/red crescent emblems (and designations) was prepared in 1999 by the Comisión Nacional Permanente para la Aplicación del Derecho Internacional Humanitario (CPDIH) with the technical advice of the Advisory Service and communicated to the competent authorities for adoption.

Panama is currently reviewing its criminal legislation. An article providing for sanctions for certain grave breaches of IHL was included into the first draft revision of the Penal Code. A more comprehensive chapter on sanctions for IHL violations to be included in the Penal Code that conforms the requirements of IHL is being prepared by the CPDIH with the assistance of the ICRC.

 Other Implementation Measures  

In May 1999 the ICRC organized a workshop for parliamentarians and their legal advisers to sensitize them on IHL. A workshop for members of the Congress's Committees of Human Rights and of Foreign Affairs more specifically, which focused mainly on punishment of breaches of IHL, was organized in July 1999.

A study of national law from the standpoint of IHL is in the process of being prepared on behalf of the CPDIH by a University Professor.

 National IHL Committee  

Panama has had a national IHL Committee   since 1997: Comisión Nacional Permanente para la Aplicación del Derecho Internacional Humanitario ( CPDIH ). Its functions include to propose draft legislation to give effect to IHL treaties, to disseminate IHL and promote its teaching in official training programs, to advise the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on issues related to IHL and participate on its behalf in international meetings related to IHL. It works through 4 subcommittees (emblem; legislation; training and dissemination; communication and fund-raising). In 1999 the CPDIH met on several occasions. It prepared in June 1999 its first annual report: "Balance y Perspectivas Nacionales de la Aplicación del DIH". In 1999 the ICRC assisted the CPDIH in the definition of its plan of action, facilitated documentation on specific topics, provided technical advice and trained its members in IHL.

In May 1999 legal advisers of the 13 institutions represented at the CPDIH participated in a half day seminar on specific topics related to IHL and its national implementation organized jointly by the CPDIH and the ICRC.

 PARAGUAY  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

    

    

Paraguay is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols (and has made a declaration pursuant to Article 90 of 1977 Additional Protocol I, recognizing the competence of the International Fact-Finding Commission), the 1972 Biological Weapons Co nvention and The 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention and the 1997 Ottawa Convention. 

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

    

    

Use of the red cross (and designation) is governed by law 993 of 6 August 1912: Que prohibe el uso del nombre, distintivos y emblemas de la Cruz Roja. A draft revision thereof was prepared by the National Red Cross Society of Paraguay. The Advisory Service analysed and commented that draft emblem law.

 Other Implementation Measures  

    

By Ministerial Resolution n°509 of 10 December 1999, the Ministry of Defence created a new Department of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law in the framework of the General Secretary of the Ministry of Defence of Paraguay.

 National IHL Committee  

    

    

Paraguay has had a national IHL Committee since 1995: Comisión Interministerial de Aplicación de Derecho Internacional Humanitario (CIADIH) . It has the mandate to disseminate the Geneva Conventions and Additional Protocols and promote their implementation through the adoption of legislative and administrative measures.

 PERU  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

Peru is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols, the 1954 Cultural Property Convention, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention and its Protocols I, II (amended version) III and IV, the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention and the 1997 Ottawa Convention.

    

    

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

Following a review of Peru's criminal legislation introduced through the adoption of Ley n. 26926 of 1998 the Penal Code provides for punishment for crimes against humanity - in particularly forced disappearance and torture - and for the crime of genocide.

The Military Justice Code provides for punishment of certain grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions and Additional Protocol I as well as some other crimes against International Law.

 Other Implementation Measures  

The Joint Command of the Armed Forces'Directive n. 017 CCFFAA-EM-FI/DDHH of August 1998 , requires all military and police institutes to include International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights Law into their training programs. To this effect in 1999 a group of 12 military instructors (9 officers and 3 police officers) was trained in IHL and Human Rights and two courses on IHL and Human Rights organized for the police forces.

In 1999, IHL was taught (lectures, seminars, conferences) at the Law Faculties of four important universities in Lima and at the Diplomatic Academy. IHL forms part of the curriculum of the University of Lima as an optional course and the Catholic University has included IHL as part of the course called " International Public Law Seminar " .

A comparative study on domestic legislation from the standpoint of IHL is in the process of being prepared by a Law Professor from the Catholic University.

 UNITED STATES OF AMERICA  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

    

    

The United States of America are a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention and its Protocols I and II (amended version) and the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention

The United States of America ratified Protocol II to the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention in 1999.    

    

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

 Legislation   

The US War Crimes Act 1996 provides for punishment of grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions (or any Protocol to which the USA becomes a party) committed by or against members of the US armed forces or US nationals. The Act was amended in 1997 to extend the range of offences covered to include, in addition to grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions:

(i) acts prohibited by Articles 23, 25, 27 and 29 of Hague Convention IV;

(ii) violations of Article 3 common to the Geneva Conventions (or Additional Protocol II in the event that the USA becomes a party);

(iii) wilfully killing or causing serious injury to civilians in violation of amended ProtocolII (Mines Protocol) to the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention.

The US Department of State has suggested broadening the scope of the Act to provide for punishment of these offences regardless of the nationality of the accused and the place where the crime was committed.

 Other Implementation Measures  

    

Efforts are being undertaken with a view to incorporate instruction of International Law of Armed Conflicts (ILoAC) as part of the official training programs of the United States School of the Americas at Fort Benning and of the Inter American Defence College

    

In 1999 specific courses on ILoAC and ICRC activities were conducted at the US School of the Americas, Fort Benning for officers attending the Command & Staff Course (February), for participants attending the course on Peace Operations (April) and for all the instructors of the School (December).

The ICRC was invited in April 1999 to lecture on ILoAC and the organization's activities at the yearly meeting on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law convened by the US SOUTHCOM.    

    

    

 URUGUAY  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

Uruguay is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols (and has made a declaration pursuant to Article 90 of 1977 Additional Protocol I (recognizing the competence of the International Fact-Finding Commission), the 1954 Cultural Property Convention (ratified in September 1999), the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1976 Environmental Modification Techniques Convention, the 1980 Conventional Weapons Convention and its Protocols I, II (amended version) III and IV and the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention. 

    

    

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

Use of the red cross and red crescent emblems (and designations) is governed by Law-Decree 679/992: Emblemas: Dictanse normas para el uso de los emblemas de la cruz roja y media luna roja, como vocablos "Cruz Roja", "Cruz de Ginebra" y Media Luna Roja".  

Uruguay's military criminal legislation is currently under review. The Instituto Jurídico para la Defensa (INJUDE ) has undertaken an assessment of the Military Justice Code from the standpoint of IHL requirements with a view to propose the amendments required to allow for punishment of breaches of IHL.

Ratification of the 1997 Ottawa Convention by Uruguay is pending for approval before the National Assembly.

    

    

 Other Implementation Measures  

Based on Executive Decree 678/992 Cométese la insturmentación de cursos en coordinación con la Comisión Nacional de Derecho Humanitario, IHL was taught in 1999 at the Military Institute of Superior Studies as a mandatory course of the Courses of High Nacional Studies and at the Instituto Artigas de Relaciones Exteriores - Escuela Diplómatica.

 National IHL Committee  

Uruguay has had a national IHL Committee since 1992: Comisión Nacional de Derecho Humanitario (CNDH) The Committee's mandate was reconfirmed and amplified in 1 996 (by Decree of 3 June 1996). It has the mandate to disseminate the Geneva Conventions and Additional Protocols and promote their implementation through the adoption of legislative and administrative measures. The ICRC supported the Committee's work by facilitating documentation on specific issues related to IHL and other information providing technical advice.

    

    

 VENEZUELA  

    

 TREATY PARTICIPATION  

    

    

Venezuela is a party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their 1977 Additional Protocols, the 1954 Cultural Property Convention, the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention and the 1997 Ottawa Convention (ratified in April 1999).

 IMPLEMENTATION OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW  

    

    

 Legislation  

    

    

Use of the red cross and red crescent emblems (and designations) is governed by the Ley no. 27.759 of 1965 de protección al nombre y emblema de la Cruz Roja.  A draft revision thereof was prepared under the initiative of the Red Cross Society of Venezuela.  

The Penal Code provides for the punishment for breaches of International treaties ratified by Venezuela that would engage the States liability, including certain grave breaches of IHL.

The Military Justice Code provides for the punishment of crimes against International Law, including certain grave breaches of the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their Additional Protocols.

 Other Implementation Measures  

    

    

The Direction for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law of the Ministry of Defence which was up in 1998 has the task to co-ordinate training programs in Human Rights and IHL for the armed forces. In 1999 IHL training was provided to the armed forces as part of their program at military academies and institutions.

A comparative study of national law from the standpoint of IHL is in the process of being prepared by a local legal expert.

 National IHL Committee  

    

    

Venezuela has had a National Human Rights Commission since 1996. The possibility of establishing a similar bod y to promote respect of IHL and co-ordinate the adoption of IHL implementing measures in Venezuela is being considered by the concerned authorities.    

    

    

 * * * * *  

    

 NOTES:  

    

1. AG/RES 1270 (XXIV-0/94) adopted at the ninth plenary session of the OAS General Assembly on 10 June 1994, Belén de Pará, Brazil: " Respect for international humanitarian law " .

 AG/RES 1335 (XXV-0/95 ) adopted at the ninth plenary session of the OAS General Assembly on 9 June 1995, Montrouis, Haiti: " Respect for international humanitarian law " .

 AG/RES 1408 (XXVI-0/96 ) adopted at the eighth plenary session of the OAS General Assembly on 7 July 1996, Panama City, Panama: " Respect for international humanitarian law "

 AG/RES 1503 (XXVII-0/97) adopted at the seventh plenary session of the OAS General Assembly on 5 June 1997, Lima, Peru: " Respect for international humanitarian law " .

 AG/RES 1565(XXVIII-0/98 ) adopted at the third plenary session of the OAS General Assembly on 2 June, 1998, Caracas, Venezuela . " Respect for international humanitarian law " .

 AG/RES 1619 (XXIX-0/99 ) adopted at the first plenary session of the OAS General Assembly on 7 June, 1999, Antigua, Guatemala: . " Respect for international humanitarian law " .

2.The present government of Cuba is suspended from the participation in the OAS.

* * * * * *

 State of Participation of OAS Member States in the  

 following International Humanitarian Law Treaties  

 as at 9 June 2000  

Four 1949 Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 ( GC I-IV )

Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts ( AP I ), 8 June 1977 and acceptation of its article 90 ( D. 90 ).

Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of Non-International Armed Conflicts ( AP II ), 8 June 1977.

Convention on Prohibitions or Restrictions on the Use of Certain Conventional Weapons Which May be Deemed to be Excessively Injurious or to Have Indiscriminate Effects, Geneva, 10 October 1980 and i ts 3 Protocols ( CCW and Prot. I-III ).

Protocol on Blinding Laser Weapons (Protocol IV to the 1980 Convention), 13 October 1995 ( CCW Prot. IV ).

Protocol on Prohibitions or Restrictions on the Use of Mines, Booby-Traps and Other Devices as amended on 3 May 1996 (Protocol II to the 1980 Convention as amended on 3 May 1996) ( CCW Prot. II a. ).

Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, The Hague, 14 May 1954 and its Protocol ( HCP and Prot. ).

Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on their Destruction, 18 September 1997 ( Ottawa Treaty ).

Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, 17 July 1998 ( ICC Statute ).

 ******  

    

    

 
 

 OAS Member States  

 GC I-IV  

 AP I  

 AP I  

 AP II  

 

 1949  

 1977  

 D 90  

 1977  

 Antigua and Barbuda  

06.10.1986.

06.10.1986.

 

06.10.1986.

 Argentina  

18.09.1956.

26.11.1986.

11.10.1996.

26.11.1986.

 Bahamas  

11.07.1975.

10.04.1980.

 

10.04.1980.

 Barbados  

10.09.1968.

19.02.1990.

 

19.02.1990.

 Belize  

29.06.1984.

29.06.1984.

 

29.06.1984.

 Bolivia  

10.12.1976.

08.12.1983.

10.08.1992.

08.12.1983.

 Brazil  

29.0 6.1957.

05.05.1992.

23.11.1993.

05.05.1992.

 Canada  

14.05.1965.

20.11.1990.

20.11.1990.

20.11.1990.

 Chile  

12.10.1950.

24.04.1991.

24.04.1991.

24.04.1991.

 Colombia  

08.11.1961.

01.09.1993.

17.04.1996.

14.08.1995.

 Costa Rica  

15.10.1969.

15.12.1983.

02.12.1999.

15.12.1983.

 Cuba*  

15.04.1954.

25.11.1982.

 

23.06.1999

 Dominica  

28.09.1981.

25.04.1996.

 

25.04.1996.

 Dominican Republic  

22.01.1958.

26.05.1994.

 

26.05.1994.

 Ecuador  

11.08.1954.

10.04.1979.

 

10.04.1979.

 El Salvador  

17.06.1953.

23.11.1978.

 

23.11.1978.

 Grenada  

13.04.1981.

23.09.1998

 

23.09.1998

 Guatemala  

14.05.1952.

19.10.1987.

 

19.10.1987.

 Guyana  

22.07.1968.

18.01.1988.

 

18.01.1988.

 Haiti  

11.04.1957.

 

 

 

 Honduras  

31.12.1965.

16.02.1995.

 

16.02.1995.

 Jamaica  

20.07.1964.

29.07.1986.

 

29.07.1986.

 Mexico  

29.10.1952.

10.03.1983.

 

 

 Nicaragua  

17.12.1953.

19 .07.1999

 

19.07.1999

 Panama  

10.02.1956.

18.09.1995.

26.10.1999.

18.09.1995.

 Paraguay  

23.10.1961.

30.11.1990.

30.01.1998

30.11.1990.

 Peru  

15.02.1956.

14.07.1989.

 

14.07.1989.

 Saint Kitts and Nevis  

14.02.1986.

14.02.1986.

 

14.02.1986.

 Saint Lucia  

18.09.1981.

07.10.1982.

 

07.10.1982.

 Saint Vincent Grenadines  

01.04.1981.

08.04.1983.

 

08.04.1983.

 Suriname  

13.10.1976.

16.12.1985.

 

16.12.1985.

 Trinidad and Tobago  

24.09.1963.

 

 

 

 United States of America  

02.08.1955.

 

 

 

 Uruguay  

05.03.1969.

13.12.1985.

17.07.1990.

13.12.1985.

 Venezuela  

13.02.1956.

23.07.1998

 

23.07.1998

    

 s  

 OAS Member States  

 CCW + Prot. I-III  

 CCW Prot. IV  

 CCW Prot. IIa.  

 HCP and Prot.  

 Ottawa Treaty  

 ICC Statute  

 

 1980  

 (laser) 1995  

 (mines) 1996  

 1954  

 1997  

 1998  

 Antigua and Barbuda  

 

 

 

 

03.05.1999

 23.10.98 sign.  

 Argentina  

02.10.1995

21.10.1998

21.10.1998

22.03.1989

14.09.1999

 08.01.99 sign.  

 Bahamas  

 

 

 

 

31.07.1998

 

 Barbados  

 

 

 

 

26.01.1999

 

 Belize  

 

 

 

 

23.04.1998

05.04.2000

 Bolivia  

 

 

 

 

09.06.1998

 17.07.98 sign.  

 Brazil  

03.10.1995

04.10.1999

04.10.1999

12.09.1958

30.04.1999

 07.02.00 sign.  

 Canada  

24.06.1994

05.01.1998

05.01.1998

11.12.1998

03.12.1997

 18.12.98 sign.  

 Chile  

 

 

 

 

 

 11.09.98 sign.  

 Colombia  

06.03.2000

06.03.2000

06.03.2000

18.06.1998

 

 10.12.98 sign.  

 Costa Rica  

17.12.1998

17.12.1998

17.12.1998

03.06.1998

17.03.1999

 07.10.98 sign.  

 Cuba*  

02.03.1987

 

 

26.11.1957

 

 

 Dominica  

 

 

 

 

26.03.1999

 

 Dominican Republic  

 

 

 

05.01.1960

 

 

 Ecuador  

04.05.1982

 

 

02.10.1956

26.04.1999

 07.10.98 sign.  

 El Salvador  

26.01.2000

26.01.2000

26.01.2000

 

27.01.1999

 

 Grenada  

 

 

 

 

19.08.1998

 

 Guatemala  

21.07.1983

 

 

02.10.1985

26.03.1999

 

 Guyana  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Haiti  

 

 

 

 

 

 26.02.99 sign.  

 Honduras  

 

 

 

 

24.09.1998

 07.10.98 sign.  

 Jamaica  

 

 

 

 

17.07.1998

 

 Mexico  

11.02.1982

10.03.1998

 

07.05.1956

09.06.1998

 

 Nicaragua  

 

 

 

25.11.1959

30.11.1998

 

 Panama  

26.03.1997

26.03.1997

03.10.1999.

17.07.1962

07.10.1998

 18.07.98 sign.  

 Paraguay  

 

 

 

 

13.11.1998

 07.10.98 sign.  

 Peru  

03.07.1997

03.07.1997

03.07.1997

21.07.1989

17.06.1998

 

 Saint Kitts and Nevis  

 

 

 

 

02.12.1998

 

 Saint Lucia  

 

 

 

 

13.04.1999

 27.08.99 sign.  

 Saint Vincent Grenadines  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Suriname  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Trinidad and Tobago  

 

 

 

 

27.04.1998

06.04.1999

 United States of America  

24.03.1995

 

24.05.1999

 

 

 

 Uruguay  

06.10.1994

18.09.1998

18.08.1998

24.09.1999

 

 

 Venezuela  

 

 

 

 

14.04.1999

07.06.2000

 
 

HCP: Argentina, Canada, Dominican Republic and Panama have not yet ratified its 1954 Protocol.

CCW: Protocol III annexed to the CCW 1980 is not yet ratified by USA.

 No State has yet ratified Protocol II adopted in March 1999.

* The current Government of Cuba is excluded from participation in the OAS.