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Switzerland: "the law of war"

15-05-1996 News Release 96/19

A new computer-assisted teaching aid has been developed by the Swiss army in cooperation with the ICRC. This CD-ROM, entitled " The Law of War " , explains to soldiers the basic rules they must observe in wartime. The first part deals with the pursuit of hostilities (definition of a combatant, methods and means of warfare allowed or prohibited during an attack) and the second part discusses the treatment of prisoners of war and the protection of the civilian population. Also included is a presentation of the international protective signs (red cross and red crescent emblems, sign protecting cultural property) and of the ICRC's mandate and activities.

At the end of the 90-minute self-instruction course, a test is provided to check the user's knowledge. The CD-ROM exists in English, French, German and Italian, and will soon be made available to armed forces in other countries.