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Manual of the Laws of Naval War. Oxford, 9 August 1913.
Section IV : On the rights and duties of the belligerent with regard to enemy property - Art. 43.
Art. 43. In case of a fight on board a war-ship, the sick-wards and the ' matériel ' belonging to them shall be respected and spared as far as possible. Although remaining subject to the laws of war, they cannot be used for any purpose other than that for which they were originally intended, so long as they are required for the sick and wounded. The commander into whose power they have fallen may, however, apply them to other purposes, if the military situation requires it, after seeing that the sick and wounded on board are properly provided for.