Practice Relating to Rule 1. The Principle of Distinction between Civilians and Combatants.
Note: Practice related to situations of doubt as to the character of a person is included under Rule 6C.
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Additional Protocol I
Article 48 of the 1977 Additional Protocol I provides: “[T]he Parties to the conflict shall at all times distinguish between the civilian population and combatants.” 
Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts (Protocol I), Geneva, 8 June 1977, Article 48. Article 48 was adopted by consensus. CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.41, 26 May 1977, p. 161.

Additional Protocol II (draft)
Article 4(1) of the draft Additional Protocol II submitted by the ICRC to the CDDH provided: “In order to ensure respect for the civilian population, the parties to the conflict … shall make a distinction between the civilian population and combatants.” 
CDDH, Official Records, Vol. I, Part Three, Draft Additional Protocols, June 1973, p. 37.

Ottawa Convention on Anti-Personnel Mines
According to the preamble to the 1997 Ottawa Convention on Anti-Personnel Mines, States Parties based their agreement on various principles of IHL, including “the principle that a distinction must be made between civilians and combatants”. 
Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on their Destruction, Ottawa, 18 September 1997, preamble.

Convention on Cluster Munitions
According to the preamble to the 2008 Convention on Cluster Munitions, States Parties based their agreement on the prohibition of the use, development, production, stockpiling, retention or transfer of cluster munitions on various principles of IHL, including “the rule[…] that the parties to a conflict shall at all times distinguish between the civilian population and combatants”. 
Convention on Cluster Munitions, Dublin, 30 May 2008, preamble, § 20.

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Lieber Code
Article 22 of the 1863 Lieber Code states: “[A]s civilization has advanced during the last centuries, so has likewise steadily advanced, especially in war on land, the distinction between the private individual belonging to a hostile country and the hostile country itself, with its men in arms.” 
Instructions for the Government of Armies of the United States in the Field, prepared by Francis Lieber, promulgated as General Order No. 100 by President Abraham Lincoln, Washington D.C., 24 April 1863, Article 22.

Oxford Manual
Article 1 of the 1880 Oxford Manual provides: “The state of war does not admit of acts of violence, save between the armed forces of belligerent States. Persons not forming part of a belligerent armed force should abstain from such acts.” 
The Laws of War on Land, adopted by the Institute of International Law, Oxford, 9 September 1880, Article 1

Memorandum of Understanding on the Application of IHL between Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
Paragraph 6 of the 1991 Memorandum of Understanding on the Application of IHL between Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia requires that hostilities be conducted in accordance with Article 48 of the 1977 Additional Protocol I. 
Memorandum of Understanding on the Application of International Humanitarian Law between Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Geneva, 27 November 1991, § 6.

Agreement on the Application of IHL between the Parties to the Conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Paragraph 2.5 of the 1992 Agreement on the Application of IHL between the Parties to the Conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina requires that hostilities be conducted in accordance with Article 48 of the 1977 Additional Protocol I. 
Agreement between Representatives of Mr. Alija Izetbegović (President of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina and President of the Party of Democratic Action), Representatives of Mr. Radovan Karadžić (President of the Serbian Democratic Party), and Representative of Mr. Miljenko Brkić (President of the Croatian Democratic Community), Geneva, 22 May 1992, § 2.5.

San Remo Manual
Paragraph 39 of the 1994 San Remo Manual states: “Parties to the conflict shall at all times distinguish between civilians or other protected persons and combatants.” 
Louise Doswald-Beck (ed.), San Remo Manual on International Law Applicable to Armed Conflicts at Sea, 12 June 1994, Prepared by international lawyers and naval experts convened by the International Institute of Humanitarian Law, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1995, § 39.

UN Secretary-General’s Bulletin
Section 5.1 of the 1999 UN Secretary-General’s Bulletin states: “The United Nations force shall make a clear distinction at all times between civilians and combatants …”. 
Observance by United Nations Forces of International Humanitarian Law, Secretary-General’s Bulletin, UN Secretariat, UN Doc. ST/SGB/1999/13, 6 August 1999, Section 5.1.

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Argentina
Argentina’s Law of War Manual (1989) provides: “The parties to the conflict must distinguish at all times between the [civilian] population and combatants.” 
Argentina, Leyes de Guerra, PC-08-01, Público, Edición 1989, Estado Mayor Conjunto de las Fuerzas Armadas, aprobado por Resolución No. 489/89 del Ministerio de Defensa, 23 April 1990, § 4.01.

Australia
Australia’s Defence Force Manual (1994) states that the law of armed conflict “establishes a requirement to distinguish between combatants and civilians, and between military objectives and civilian objects. This requirement imposes obligations on all parties to a conflict to establish and maintain the distinction.” 
Australia, Manual on Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Force Publication, Operations Series, ADFP 37 – Interim Edition, 1994, § 504.

Australia’s LOAC Manual (2006) states:
The LOAC establishes a requirement to distinguish between combatants and civilians, and between military objectives and civilian objects. This requirement imposes obligations on all parties to a conflict to establish and maintain the distinction. 
Australia, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Doctrine Publication 06.4, Australian Defence Headquarters, 11 May 2006, § 5.4; see also §§ 2.11 and 9.13.

Belgium
Belgium’s Law of War Manual (1983) provides: “A distinction must always be made between the civilian population and those participating in hostilities: the latter may be attacked, the former may not.” 
Belgium, Droit Pénal et Disciplinaire Militaire et Droit de la Guerre, Deuxième Partie, Droit de la Guerre, Ecole Royale Militaire, par J. Maes, Chargé de cours, Avocat-général près la Cour Militaire, D/1983/1187/029, 1983, p. 26.

Benin
Benin’s Military Manual (1995) provides: “A distinction shall be made at all times between combatants and civilians.” 
Benin, Le Droit de la Guerre, III fascicules, Forces Armées du Bénin, Ministère de la Défense nationale, 1995, Fascicule II, p. 5 and Fascicule III, p. 11.

Burundi
Burundi’s Regulations on International Humanitarian Law (2007) states: “In order to spare the civilian population … the parties to an [armed] conflict must at all times distinguish between the civilian population and combatants”. 
Burundi, Règlement n° 98 sur le droit international humanitaire, Ministère de la Défense Nationale et des Anciens Combattants, Projet “Moralisation” (BDI/B-05), August 2007, Part I bis, p. 31; see also Part I bis, pp. 15, 40, 63 and 80.

Cameroon
Cameroon’s Instructor’s Manual (1992) requires “respect for the principle of distinction, that is to say, the definition and separation of soldiers and civilians”. 
Cameroon, Droit International Humanitaire et Droit de la Guerre, Manuel de l’Instructeur en vigueur dans les Forces Armées, Présidence de la République, Ministère de la Défense, Etat-major des Armées, Troisième Division, Edition 1992, p. 55.

Cameroon’s Instructor’s Manual (2006) states: “The soldier in combat must distinguish between combatant and non-combatant.” 
Cameroon, Droit des conflits armés et droit international humanitaire, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les forces de défense, Ministère de la Défense, Présidence de la République, Etat-major des Armées, 2006, p. 21; see also pp. 41 and 67.

It must be emphasized that [a responsibility of] command regarding the law of armed conflict and international humanitarian law is to:

- ensure respect for the principle of discrimination; that is to say to make a distinction between combatants and civilians as well as protected persons (prisoners of war, the wounded, medical personnel). 
Cameroon, Droit des conflits armés et droit international humanitaire, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les forces de défense, Ministère de la Défense, Présidence de la République, Etat-major des Armées, 2006, p. 175, § 481.

Canada
Canada’s LOAC Manual (1999) states: “Commanders shall at all times distinguish between the civilian population and combatants.” 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Level, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 1999, p. 4-1, § 4; see also p. 2-2, § 12.

Canada’s LOAC Manual (2001) states:
1. Distinction. The principle of distinction imposes an obligation on commanders to distinguish between legitimate targets and civilian objects and the civilian population. It is of primary importance when selecting targets.
2. This obligation is, of course, dependent on the quality of the information available to commanders at the time decisions are made. Commanders must make reasonable, good faith efforts to gather intelligence and to review the intelligence available to them.  
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Level, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 204.

403. Distinction principle
1. To ensure respect for and protection of the civilian population and civilian objects, commanders shall at all times distinguish between the civilian population and combatants and between civilian objects and military objectives.

411. Protection of civilians and civilian objects
1. The protection of civilians and civilian objects is a fundamental principle of the LOAC. Parties to a conflict have a duty to distinguish between civilians and combatants as well as between civilian objects and military objectives. Civilians are entitled to protection from the dangers arising from military operations. In conducting operations care should always be taken to spare civilians and civilian objects. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, §§ 403 and 411.

Central African Republic
The Central African Republic’s Instructor’s Manual (1999) states in Volume 2 (Instruction for group and patrol leaders): “Parties to a conflict must at all times distinguish between the civilian population and combatants in order to spare the civilian population and civilian property.” 
Central African Republic, Le Droit de la Guerre, Fascicule No. 2: Formation pour l’obtention du certificat technique No. 2 (Chef de Groupe), du certificat Inter-Armé (CIA), du certificat d’aptitude de Chef de Patrouille (CACP), Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Centrafricaines, 1999, Chapter I, Fundamental Rules, § 7; see also Le Droit de la Guerre, Fascicule No. 3: Formation pour l’obtention du Brevet d’Armes No. 1, du Brevet d’Armes No. 2 et le stage d’Officier de Police Judiciaire (OPJ), Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Centrafricaines, 1999, Chapter III, Section 1.

Chad
Chad’s Instructor’s Manual (2006) states that “a distinction must be made between civilians and … combatants”. 
Chad, Droit international humanitaire, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les forces armées et de sécurité, Ministère de la Défense, Présidence de la République, Etat-major des Armées, 2006, p. 87; see also pp. 21 and 42.

Colombia
Colombia’s Circular on Fundamental Rules of IHL (1992) states: “The Parties to the conflict must at all times make a distinction between civilians and combatants in order to protect the civilian population and civilian objects.” 
Colombia, Transcripción Normas Fundamentales del Derecho Humanitario Aplicables en los Conflictos Armados, Circular No. 033/DIPL-SERPO-526, Policía Nacional, Dirección General, Santafé de Bogotá, 14 May 1992, § 7.

Colombia’s Basic Military Manual (1995) provides for the obligation “to distinguish between combatants and the civilian population”. 
Colombia, Derecho Internacional Humanitario – Manual Básico para las Personerías y las Fuerzas Armadas de Colombia, Ministerio de Defensa Nacional, 1995, pp. 48–49.

Côte d’Ivoire
Côte d’Ivoire’s Teaching Manual (2007) provides in Book I (Basic instruction):
Lesson 1 Basic notions of IHL

The Law of War is based on three fundamental principles:
- The principle of distinction;
- The principle of limitation;
- The principle of proportionality.
The principle of distinction specifies who and what can be attacked and who and what cannot be attacked.

NB: For the soldier, the principle of distinction is the most important. 
Côte d’Ivoire, Droit de la guerre, Manuel d’instruction, Livre I: Instruction de base, Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Nationales, November 2007, pp. 13 and 14–16.

II. The fundamental principles of IHL
Just as military operations are based on principles concerning attack, defence, withdrawal, etc., the law of armed conflicts contains a set of well-defined principles. These concrete principles reflect the realities of conflicts. They represent a balance between the principle of humanity and military necessity, and they are valid at all times, in all places, and in all circumstances. It is essential that these rules are known by all combatants. They must permanently be taken into consideration in every activity of assessment, planning, and military training or operation. The following principles can be found throughout the texts of the law of armed conflicts.
II.1. Distinction
At all times, a distinction must be clearly made between combatants and civilians or the civilian population as such. 
Côte d’Ivoire, Droit de la guerre, Manuel d’instruction, Livre III, Tome 1: Instruction de l’élève officier d’active de 1ère année, Manuel de l’élève, Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Nationales, November 2007, p. 12; see also Droit de la guerre, Manuel d’instruction, Livre III, Tome 2: Instruction de l’élève officier d’active de 2ème année, Manuel de l’instructeur, Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Nationales, November 2007, p. 13; Droit de la guerre, Manuel d’instruction, Livre IV: Instruction du chef de section et du commandant de compagnie, Manuel de l’élève, Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Nationales, November 2007, p. 13.

Chapter 2. Combatants and objectives
In order to ensure respect for and protection of the civilian population and civilian objects, military leaders must at all times distinguish between civilian populations and combatants, and between civilian objects and military objectives. 
Côte d’Ivoire, Droit de la guerre, Manuel d’instruction, Livre IV: Instruction du chef de section et du commandant de compagnie, Manuel de l’élève, Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Nationales, November 2007, p. 17.

Croatia
Croatia’s LOAC Compendium (1991) states that a distinction must always be made between combatants and civilians. 
Croatia, Compendium “Law of Armed Conflicts”, Republic of Croatia, Ministry of Defence, 1991, p. 37.

Croatia’s Instructions on Basic Rules of IHL (1993) requires all relevant personnel to distinguish between combatants and civilians in order to protect the civilian population and civilian property. 
Croatia, Instructions “Basic Rules of International Humanitarian Law Applicable in Armed Conflicts”, Republic of Croatia, Ministry of Defence, 1993, § 7.

Djibouti
Djibouti’s Manual on International Humanitarian Law (2004) states that IHL “has several principles [one of which is] … distinction: the obligation to always distinguish between combatants and the civilian population”. 
Djibouti, Manuel sur le droit international humanitaire et les droits de l’homme applicables au travail du policier, Ministère de l’Intérieur, Direction Générale de la Police, 2004, p. 11.

Ecuador
Ecuador’s Naval Manual (1989) states: “The law of armed conflicts is based largely on the distinction to be made between combatants and noncombatants.” 
Ecuador, Aspectos Importantes del Derecho Internacional Marítimo que Deben Tener Presente los Comandantes de los Buques, Academia de Guerra Naval, 1989, § 5.3; see also §§ 8.1 and 11.1.

France
France’s LOAC Summary Note (2001) states: “The civilian population and civilian objects must be spared and distinguished at all times from combatants and military objectives.” 
France, Fiche de Synthèse sur les Règles Applicables dans les Conflits Armés, Note No. 432/DEF/EMA/OL.2/NP, Général de Corps d’Armée Voinot (pour l’Amiral Lanxade, Chef d’Etat-major des Armées), 1992, Part I, preamble; see also Fiche didactique relative au droit des conflits armés, Directive of the Ministry of Defence, 4 January 2000, annexed to the Directive No. 147 of the Ministry of Defence of 4 January 2000, p. 4.

France’s LOAC Manual (2001) imposes the obligation “to distinguish between military objectives, which may be attacked, and civilian objects and persons, which must not be made the object of deliberate attack”. 
France, Manuel de droit des conflits armés, Ministère de la Défense, Direction des Affaires Juridiques, Sous-Direction du droit international humanitaire et du droit européen, Bureau du droit des conflits armés, 2001, p. 13.

Germany
Germany’s Military Manual (1992) states that it is prohibited “to injure military objectives, civilians, or civilian objects without distinction”. 
Germany, Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflicts – Manual, DSK VV207320067, edited by the Federal Ministry of Defence of the Federal Republic of Germany, VR II 3, August 1992, English translation of ZDv 15/2, Humanitäres Völkerrecht in bewaffneten Konflikten – Handbuch, August 1992, § 401; see also § 429.

Guinea
Guinea’s Soldier’s Manual (2010), under the heading “Principles of the law of war”, states:
The law of [w]ar rests on three fundamental principles:
1. Principle of distinction

Principle of distinction defines:
- who … can be attacked;
- who … cannot be attacked.

NB: For a soldier, the principle of distinction is the most important one. 
Guinea, Soldier’s Manual, Ministry of National Defence, 2010, p. 2.

Hungary
Hungary’s Military Manual (1992) provides that a distinction must always be made between combatants and civilians. 
Hungary, A Hadijog, Jegyzet a Katonai, Föiskolák Hallgatói Részére, Magyar Honvédség Szolnoki Repülötiszti Föiskola, 1992, p. 60.

Israel
With reference to Israel’s Law of War Booklet (1986), the Report on the Practice of Israel states: “In principle, the IDF (Israel Defense Forces) accepts and applies the principle of distinction.” 
Report on the Practice of Israel, 1997, Chapter 1.1, referring to Conduct in the Battlefield in Accordance with the Law of War, Israel Defense Forces, 1986, Chapter 1.

Israel’s Manual on the Rules of Warfare (2006) states that “a distinction has to be made between combatants and non-combatants”. 
Israel, Rules of Warfare on the Battlefield, Military Advocate-General’s Corps Command, IDF School of Military Law, Second Edition, 2006, p. 29.

Mexico
Mexico’s Army and Air Force Manual (2009), in a section on the 1977 Additional Protocol I, states: “The parties to a conflict must always distinguish between civilians and combatants.” 
Mexico, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para el Ejército y la Fuerza Área Mexicanos, Ministry of National Defence, June 2009, § 260.

Netherlands
The Military Manual (1993) of the Netherlands states: “The parties to the conflict must at all times distinguish between the civilian population and combatants.” 
Netherlands, Toepassing Humanitair Oorlogsrecht, Voorschift No. 27-412/1, Koninklijke Landmacht, Ministerie van Defensie, 1993, p. IV-1, § 1.

The Military Manual (2005) of the Netherlands lists the “distinction between civilian and military” as one of five “generally accepted principles of the humanitarian law of war”. 
Netherlands, Humanitair Oorlogsrecht: Handleiding, Voorschift No. 27-412, Koninklijke Landmacht, Militair Juridische Dienst, 2005, §§ 0221 and 0223.

New Zealand
New Zealand’s Military Manual (1992) states: “The principle of distinction … imposes an obligation on commanders to distinguish between legitimate military objectives and civilian objects and the civilian population when conducting military operations, particularly when selecting targets.” 
New Zealand, Interim Law of Armed Conflict Manual, DM 112, New Zealand Defence Force, Headquarters, Directorate of Legal Services, Wellington, November 1992, p. 2–4, § 205.

Nigeria
Nigeria’s Military Manual (1994) states: “The main aim for all commanders and individual combatants is to distinguish combatants and military objectives from civilian persons and objects at all times.”
Peru
Peru’s IHL Manual (2004) states: “A distinction must be made at all times between … combatants and civilians.” 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial Nº 1394-2004-DE/CCFFAA/CDIH-FFAA, Lima, 1 December 2004, § 27.a(2)(a).

The Principle of Distinction establishes the obligation to observe a distinction between those who take part in the hostilities and those who do not. The distinction between people and objects that are considered military objectives and those that are not is important, because it determines whether or not a target can be attacked. 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial Nº 1394-2004-DE/CCFFAA/CDIH-FFAA, Lima, 1 December 2004, § 18.

Commanders must take all necessary measures and ensure that their subordinates distinguish between people … that are considered military objectives and those that are not both in the conduct of operations and in their behaviour during engagements. 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial Nº 1394-2004-DE/CCFFAA/CDIH-FFAA, Lima, 1 December 2004, § 24.c.(1).

Peru’s IHL and Human Rights Manual (2010) states: “A distinction must be made at all times between … combatants and civilians”. 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario y Derechos Humanos para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial No. 049-2010/DE/VPD, Lima, 21 May 2010, § 19, p. 224; see also § 61(a), p. 264, and § 122(a), p. 313.

Russian Federation
The Russian Federation’s Regulations on the Application of IHL (2001) states:
While getting military units ready for combat operations and controlling them during hostilities, commanders shall be guided by the principles of international humanitarian law: the principles of legality, distinction, proportionality, humanity and military necessity.

The principle of distinction means making a distinction, under any circumstances, between the civilian population and servicemen, as well as between civilian objects and military objectives, which helps ensure protection of civilian persons and objects during combat operations and concentrate the force’s effort against the enemy military objectives. 
Russian Federation, Regulations on the Application of International Humanitarian Law by the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation, Moscow, 8 August 2001, § 17.

Sierra Leone
Sierra Leone’s Instructor Manual (2007) states:
The aim of the instruction of law of war within the armed forces is to ensure that, in fulfilling their mission, each and every member of them respects the fundamental rules of the law, which is based on the distinction that must be made at all times between military objectives and civilian persons and objects, and protects all civilians and persons not or no longer involved in combat actions, irrespective of the situation, place, time or any other circumstances. 
Sierra Leone, The Law of Armed Conflict. Instructor Manual for the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF), Armed Forces Education Centre, September 2007, p. 10.

In every military operation a distinction must be made between combatants and non-combatants For example those taking direct part in hostilities may be attacked and those not or no longer taking part in hostilities may not be attacked. 
Sierra Leone, The Law of Armed Conflict. Instructor Manual for the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF), Armed Forces Education Centre, September 2007, pp. 18–19; see also p. 35.
[emphasis in original]
Spain
Spain’s LOAC Manual (2007) states that “a distinction must be made between civilians and combatants”. 
Spain, Orientaciones. El Derecho de los Conflictos Armados, Tomo 1, Publicación OR7–004, (Edición Segunda), Mando de Adiestramiento y Doctrina, Dirección de Doctrina, Orgánica y Materiales, 2 November 2007, § 3.1.a.

Sweden
Sweden’s IHL Manual (1991) states: “A distinction shall always be made between persons participating in hostilities and who are thereby legitimate objectives, and members of the civilian population, who may not constitute objectives in warfare.” 
Sweden, International Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflict, with reference to the Swedish Total Defence System, Swedish Ministry of Defence, January 1991, Section 3.2.1.5, p. 40.

Switzerland
Switzerland’s Basic Military Manual (1987) states: “The Parties to the conflict must at all times make a distinction between the civilian population and combatant troops.” 
Switzerland, Lois et coutumes de la guerre (Extrait et commentaire), Règlement 51.7/II f, Armée Suisse, 1987, Article 25(1).

Togo
Togo’s Military Manual (1996) provides: “A distinction shall be made at all times between combatants and civilians.” 
Togo, Le Droit de la Guerre, III fascicules, Etat-major Général des Forces Armées Togolaises, Ministère de la Défense nationale, 1996, Fascicule II, p. 5 and Fascicule III, p. 11.

Ukraine
Ukraine’s IHL Manual (2004) states:
Principle of distinction means that during preparation for and conduct of combat a clear distinction must be made between civilians and combatants [and] between civilian objects and military objectives, with a view to ensuring protection of the civilian population and civilian objects from the consequences of hostilities and to concentrating the actions of forces exclusively against the enemy’s military objects. 
Ukraine, Manual on the Application of IHL Rules, Ministry of Defence, 11 September 2004, § 2.1.7.

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The UK Military Manual (1958) refers to “the division of the population of a belligerent State into two classes, namely, the armed forces and the peaceful population”. 
United Kingdom, The Law of War on Land being Part III of the Manual of Military Law, The War Office, HMSO, 1958, § 86.

The UK LOAC Manual (2004) states:
Since military operations are to be conducted only against the enemy’s armed forces and military objectives, there must be a clear distinction between the armed forces and civilians, or between combatants and non-combatants, and between objects that might legitimately be attacked and those that are protected from attack. The principle of distinction, sometimes referred to as the principle of discrimination or identification, separates combatants from non-combatants and legitimate military targets from civilian objects. 
United Kingdom, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Ministry of Defence, 1 July 2004, §§ 2.5–2.5.1.

The UK LOAC Manual (2004), as amended in 2010, states:
Since military operations are to be conducted only against the enemy’s armed forces and military objectives, there must be a clear distinction between the armed forces and civilians, or between combatants and non-combatants, and between objects that might legitimately be attacked and those that are protected from attack. 
United Kingdom, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Ministry of Defence, 1 July 2004, as amended by Amendment 3, Ministry of Defence, September 2010, § 2.5–2.5.1.

United States of America
The US Air Force Pamphlet (1976) states: “In order to insure respect and protection for the civilian population and civilian objects, the parties to the conflict must at all times distinguish between the civilian population and combatants.” 
United States, Air Force Pamphlet 110-31, International Law – The Conduct of Armed Conflict and Air Operations, US Department of the Air Force, 1976, § 5-3(b).

The US Naval Handbook (1995) states: “The law of armed conflicts is based largely on the distinction to be made between combatants and noncombatants.” 
United States, The Commander’s Handbook on the Law of Naval Operations, NWP 1-14M/MCWP 5-2.1/COMDTPUB P5800.7, issued by the Department of the Navy, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations and Headquarters, US Marine Corps, and Department of Transportation, US Coast Guard, October 1995 (formerly NWP 9 (Rev. A)/FMFM 1-10, October 1989), § 5.3; see also §§ 8.1 and 11.1.

The US Naval Handbook (2007) states: “The principle of distinction is concerned with distinguishing combatants from civilians and military objects from civilian objects so as to minimize damage to civilians and civilian objects.” 
United States, The Commander’s Handbook on the Law of Naval Operations, NWP 1-14M/MCWP 5-12.1/COMDTPUB P5800.7, issued by the Department of the Navy, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations and Headquarters, US Marine Corps, and Department of Homeland Security, US Coast Guard, July 2007, § 5.3.2.

Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe’s Code of Conduct for Combatants (1993) states: “During hostilities a distinction must be made between civilians and military objectives.”  
Zimbabwe, Code of Conduct for Combatants, Joint publication of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces and the International Committee of the Red Cross Regional Delegation in Harare, 1993, p. 15.

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Colombia
Colombia’s Directive No. 10 (2007), whose objective is to prevent the killing of protected persons, states:
In view of the new circumstances and modalities of the criminal acts of illegal armed groups which operate more and more frequently disguised as civilians, the armed forces must undertake all possible efforts to distinguish the civilian population and to protect the civilian population in all circumstances. 
Colombia, Directive No. 10, 2007, § IV.

Denmark
Denmark’s Military Criminal Code (1973), as amended in 1978, provides:
Any person who uses war instruments or procedures the application of which violates an international agreement entered into by Denmark or the general rules of international law, shall be liable to the same penalty [i.e. a fine, lenient imprisonment or up to 12 years’ imprisonment]. 
Denmark, Military Criminal Code, 1973, as amended in 1978, § 25(1).

Any person who deliberately uses war means [“krigsmiddel”] or procedures the application of which violates an international agreement entered into by Denmark or international customary law, shall be liable to the same penalty [i.e. imprisonment up to life imprisonment]. 
Denmark, Military Criminal Code, 2005, § 36(2).

Ireland
Under Ireland’s Geneva Conventions Act (1962), as amended in 1998, any “minor breach” of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, including violations of Article 48, is a punishable offence. 
Ireland, Geneva Conventions Act, 1962, as amended in 1998, Section 4(1) and (4).

Norway
Norway’s Military Penal Code (1902), as amended in 1981, provides:
Anyone who contravenes or is accessory to the contravention of provisions relating to the protection of persons or property laid down in … the two additional protocols to [the 1949 Geneva] Conventions … is liable to imprisonment. 
Norway, Military Penal Code, 1902, as amended in 1981, § 108(b).

Peru
Peru’s Decree on the Use of Force by the Armed Forces (2010) states:
The following principles are recognized by the norms of international humanitarian law as applying before, during and after the use of force:

b. Distinction … is the differentiation which must be made between those who directly participate in hostilities and those who do not. 
Peru, Decree on the Use of Force by the Armed Forces, 2010, Article 7(b).

Spain
Spain’s Royal Ordinances for the Armed Forces (2009) states: “In the conduct of any operation, [members of the armed forces] must take into account the principle of distinction between civilians and combatants … in order to protect the civilian population.” 
Spain, Royal Ordinances for the Armed Forces, 2009, Article 111.

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Colombia
In 2004, in the Constitutional Case No. C-037/04, the Criminal Chamber of Colombia’s Constitutional Court stated that according to “the principle of distinction … parties to a conflict must distinguish between combatants and non-combatants (the civilian population), as the latter cannot be the object of attack”. 
Colombia, Constitutional Court, Constitutional Case No. C-037/04, Judgment of 27 January 2004, pp. 35–36.

In 2006, in the Constitutional Case No. T-165/06, the First Appeals Chamber of Colombia’s Constitutional Court stated:
[W]ith regard to the conduct of hostilities, it is important to note that IHL is ruled by fundamental principles, such as the principles of distinction, limitation and proportionality. Indeed, … the principle of distinction imposes on weapon bearers the obligation to distinguish in their military actions between combatants and non-combatants. 
Colombia, Constitutional Court, Constitutional Case No. T-165/06, Judgment of 7 March 2006, pp. 7–8

In 2007, in the Constitutional Case No. C-291/07, the Plenary Chamber of Colombia’s Constitutional Court stated:
[T]he essential principles of international humanitarian law have acquired ius cogens status, based on the fact that the international community as a whole has recognized their peremptory and imperative nature … Among the essential principles of international humanitarian law with ius cogens status applicable in internal armed conflicts … [is] … the principle of distinction. 
Colombia, Constitutional Court, Constitutional Case No. C-291/07, Judgment of 25 April 2007, p. 70.

The general duty to distinguish between civilians and combatants is an essential duty binding the parties to any non-international armed conflict to differentiate at all times between civilians and combatants in order to protect civilians and their property. Indeed, parties to a conflict are bound to make every effort to distinguish between military objectives and civilians … This rule is found in international treaties applicable in internal armed conflicts and is binding on Colombia. It forms part of customary international humanitarian law and has attained ius cogens status. 
Colombia, Constitutional Court, Constitutional Case No. C-291/07, Judgment of 25 April 2007, p. 78.
[footnote in original omitted]
Germany
In 2010, in the Fuel Tankers case, the Federal Prosecutor General at Germany’s Federal Court of Justice investigated whether war crimes or other crimes under domestic law had been committed in the course of an airstrike which was ordered by a colonel (Oberst) of the German armed forces against two tankers transporting fuel for the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan stolen by the Taliban near Kunduz and which resulted in the deaths of a number of civilians. The Federal Prosecutor General stated:
Pursuant to § 170 para. 2 StPO [Penal Procedure Code], the investigation proceedings which were initiated by the order of 12 March 2010 against Colonel (Oberst) Klein and Company Sergeant Major (Hauptfeldwebel) Wilhelm due to suspected offences under the VStGB [International Crimes Code] and other offences are to be terminated as a result of the investigations conducted and based on the sources of information set out hereafter and on the reasons given in detail hereafter. 
Germany, Federal Court of Justice, Federal Prosecutor General, Fuel Tankers case, Decision, 16 April 2010, p. 1.

Colonel (Oberst) Klein’s actions were lawful under international law and therefore justified under domestic criminal law [hence not constituting murder] …
In the assessment of the lawfulness of military attacks in non-international armed conflict which result in the killing of persons, the victims’ status under the international law of armed conflict is of particular relevance. One must distinguish whether the victims are armed fighters of the adverse party, civilians directly participating in hostilities, or other civilians. 
Germany, Federal Court of Justice, Federal Prosecutor General, Fuel Tankers case, Decision, 16 April 2010, p. 59.

Israel
In its judgment in Physicians for Human Rights v. Prime Minister of Israel in 2009 concerning the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip consequent to the start of Israeli military operations (“Cast Lead”) there in December 2008, Israel’s High Court of Justice stated: “One of the fundamental principles of international humanitarian law is the principle that distinguishes combatants and military targets from civilians and civilian targets, and grants protection to the latter.” 
Israel, High Court of Justice, Physicians for Human Rights v. Prime Minister of Israel, Judgment, 19 January 2009, § 21.

Spain
In 2010, in the Couso case, which concerned the killing of a Spanish journalist in Baghdad on 8 April 2003 by troops of the United States of America, the Criminal Chamber of Spain’s Supreme Court referred to norms of IHL relevant to the case under review, including Article 48 of the 1977 Additional Protocol I. 
Spain, Supreme Court, Couso case, Judgment, 13 July 2010, Section II(II), Sexto, § 2, p. 13.

Venezuela
In 2001, in the Ballestas case, the Colombian government requested the preventive detention and extradition of a Colombian citizen belonging to the armed group known as the Ejército de Liberación Nacional (National Liberation Army) for the crimes of rebellion, kidnapping, wrongful death, seizure and diversion of aircraft. The Chamber of Criminal Appeals of Venezuela’s Supreme Tribunal of Justice stated: “In wartime, distinctions must be made between combatants and non-combatants.” 
Venezuela, Supreme Tribunal of Justice, Ballestas case, Judgment, 10 December 2001, p. 8.

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Belgium
A report submitted to the Belgian Senate in 1991 noted that the principle of distinction remained the foundation of the law of armed conflict. 
Belgium, Senate, Report, Enquête parlementaire sur l’existence en Belgique d’un réseau de renseignements clandestin international, 1990–1991 Session, Doc. 1117-4, 1 October 1991, § 20.

Denmark
In 2008, in a joint cost benefit analysis of a possible introduction of a national moratorium on all cluster munitions, Denmark’s Ministry of Defence and Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated:
[The] provisions, which are outlined below, are generally recognized as being an expression of customary international law. …
The purpose of international humanitarian law is to protect the victims of war as much as possible. The central provision in this regard is API [1977 Additional Protocol I] Article 48, which states that:
Parties to the conflict shall at all times distinguish between the civilian population and combatants and between civilian objects and military objectives and accordingly shall direct their operations only against military objectives.
It follows from API that military attacks that do not respect the distinction between civilians and military targets are illegal. 
Denmark, Ministry of Defence and Ministry of Foreign Affairs, A Cost Benefit Analysis of a Possible Introduction of a National Danish Moratorium on All Cluster Munitions, 1 April 2008, p. 15.

Djibouti
In 2010, in the History and Geography Textbook for 8th Grade, Djibouti’s Ministry of National Education and Higher Education stated: “The [Additional] Protocols of 1977 reaffirmed and spelled out in detail … [the principle] of distinction: ‘(…) [P]arties to the conflict shall at all times distinguish between the civilian population and combatants …’ (art. 45, Protocol I, see also art. 13, Protocol II).” 
Djibouti, Ministry of National Education and Higher Education, History and Geography Textbook for Eighth Grade, 2010, p. 188.

Ecuador
In its written statement submitted to the ICJ in the Nuclear Weapons case in 1995, Ecuador stated: “The use of nuclear weapons does not discriminate, in general, military objectives from civilian objectives.” 
Ecuador, Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, 20 June 1995, § D.

Egypt
In its written statement submitted to the ICJ in the Nuclear Weapons case in 1995, Egypt stated:
The distinction between combatants and non-combatants is one of the most important victories and accomplishments of international law since the early beginnings of the nineteenth century. Any authorization of nuclear weapons will definitely cause this principle to collapse. 
Egypt, Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, 20 June 1995, § 24; see also §§ 17 and 35(B)(4).

Finland
In 2004, in a report to Parliament on Finland’s human rights policy, Finland stated:
In an armed conflict, the individual is protected not only by human rights law but also by the rules of international humanitarian law. The rules of humanitarian law are essentially based on two basic principles: the applicability of IHL to all armed conflicts irrespective of the reason of the conflict, and the distinction between combatants and civilians. 
Finland, Government report to Parliament on the human rights policy of Finland 2004, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Helsinki, 2004, p. 82.

France
The instructions given to the French armed forces for the conduct of Opération Mistral, simulating a military operation under the right of self-defence or a mandate of the UN Security Council, state: “All parties must at all times make a distinction between the civilian population and military objectives in order to spare the civilian population.” 
France, Etat-major de la Force d’Action Rapide, Ordres pour l’Opération Mistral, 1995, Section 6, § 66.

In 2008, the Minister of Defence of France stated:
[France] is a party to the 1977 Additional Protocol I to the 1949 Geneva Conventions, which defines the major fundamental principles of protection of the civilian population against the effects of hostilities, in particular … the principle of discrimination … France considers this document to be a fundamental pillar of international humanitarian law and wishes it to become universal as soon as possible, in order to allow for the requirements of humanity during armed conflicts to be better respected. 
France, Response from the Minister of Defence to parliamentary written question No. 20626, Journal officiel de la République française, 6 May 2008, p. 3812.

In 2009, the Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of France stated:
[O]ne of the essential principles of international humanitarian law is that a distinction must be made at all times and in all circumstances between combatants and non-combatants … There are few conflicts in which that principle is fully respected. 
France, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, “The Savaging of Humanitarian Law”, New York Times, 28 January 2009, p. 1.

In 2009, the Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of France stated:
Violations of humanitarian law are ever increasing, as the current crises are unfortunately there to remind us, whether we are looking at Darfur, Somalia, Gaza, Sri Lanka or the Kivus. … The means and methods of warfare know no limitation or restraint, [such as] distinction of targets …
We must react! 
France, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, “International Humanitarian Law, an Imperative”, La Croix, 12 February 2009, p. 1.

In 2009, the President of France stated:
We cannot resign ourselves to the suffering of millions of women and men who are victims of wars …

All parties to a conflict, and in the first place States, shall strictly respect their commitment to apply the provisions of international humanitarian law. One of its main principles is the distinction between civilian and military objectives: and yet, it is the civilian population who pays, by far, the highest price in armed conflicts. This is a scandal, this is unacceptable. 
France, Address by the President of the French Republic on the 90th Anniversary of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, 4 May 2009, p. 2.

Germany
In 2010, in reply to a Minor Interpellation in the Bundestag (Lower House of Parliament) titled “Killing of German nationals by a US drone attack – Intervention of the German judiciary”, Germany’s Federal Government wrote:
15. How does the Federal Government evaluate the legality of acts of targeted killing of persons within the context of international and non-international armed conflicts …?
International humanitarian law distinguishes in international and non-international armed conflicts between, on the one hand, armed forces opposing one another (international armed conflict) or armed forces and opposed organized armed groups (non-international [armed conflict]) and, on the other hand, civilians. 
Germany, Lower House of Federal Parliament (Bundestag), Reply by the Federal Government to the Minor Interpellation by Members Jerzy Montag, Hans-Christian Ströbele, Omit Nouripour, further Members and the Parliamentary Group BÜNDNIS 90/DIE GRÜNEN, BT-Drs. 17/3916, 23 November 2010, p. 6.

India
In its written statement submitted to the ICJ in the Nuclear Weapons case in 1995, India concluded: “The use of nuclear weapons in an armed conflict is unlawful being contrary to the conventional as well as customary international law because such a use cannot distinguish between the combatants and non-combatants.” 
India, Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, 20 June 1995, p. 4; see also p. 5.

Israel
In 2008, in a background paper on Israel’s operations in Gaza, Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated: “A core principle of the law of armed conflict is the ‘principle of distinction’ – the obligation to ensure at all times that a distinction is made between combatants and civilians.” 
Israel, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, background paper, Responding to Hamas Attacks from Gaza: Issues of Proportionality, December 2008, § 1.

In 2009, in a report on Israeli operations in Gaza between 27 December 2008 and 18 January 2009 (the “Gaza Operation”, also known as “Operation Cast Lead”), Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated:
The first core principle of the Law of Armed Conflict, as reflected both in treaty law and in customary international law, is that “the Parties to the conflict shall at all times distinguish between the civilian population and combatants … and accordingly shall direct their operations only against military objectives.” The principle imposes obligations on both parties to an armed conflict. 
Israel, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, The Operation in Gaza 27 December 2008–18 January 2009: Factual and Legal Aspects, 29 July 2009, § 94.

[The 1977] Additional Protocol I, art. 48. Although the State of Israel is not a party to the Additional Protocols to the Geneva Conventions, it accepts that this provision, as with certain others addressing the principles of distinction and proportionality, accurately reflects customary international law. See Public Committee against Torture in Israel v. Government of Israel, HCJ 769/02 at § 20 (11 December 2005). 
Israel, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, The Operation in Gaza 27 December 2008–18 January 2009: Factual and Legal Aspects, 29 July 2009, § 94, footnote.

Japan
In its oral pleadings before the ICJ in the Nuclear Weapons case in 1995, Japan stated: “With their colossal power and capacity for slaughter and destruction, nuclear weapons make no distinction between combatants and non-combatants.” 
Japan, Oral pleadings before the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, 7 November 1995, Verbatim Record CR 95/27, p. 36.

Lebanon
The Report on the Practice of Lebanon refers to a 1996 report by the Lebanese Ministry of Justice, which stated that Israel had committed serious violations of the 1949 Geneva Conventions by failing to distinguish between civilians and combatants. 
Report on the Practice of Lebanon, 1998, Chapter 1.4, referring to Report by the Lebanese Ministry of Justice on possibilities for legal action against Israel, 12 April 1996.

Malaysia
In 2010, during the consideration of the Status of the 1977 Additional Protocols by the Sixth Committee of the UN General Assembly, a statement of the delegation of Malaysia was summarized by the Committee in its records as follows:
8. [The delegate of Malaysia] said that …

10. … [t]he laws of naval warfare incorporated the fundamental principles of international humanitarian law, including necessity and proportionality …
11. [In the case of the attacks by the Israel Defense Forces on the Mavi Marmara and five accompanying vessels in May 2010] … [n]aval forces were … under an obligation to distinguish between civilians and combatants. 
Malaysia, Statement by the delegation of Malaysia before the Sixth Committee of the UN General Assembly on the Status of the Protocols Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and relating to the protection of victims of armed conflict, 18 October 2010, as published in the summary record of the 13th meeting, 8 December 2010, UN Doc. A/C.6/65/SR.13, §§ 8, 10 and 11.

New Zealand
In its written statement submitted to the ICJ in the Nuclear Weapons case in 1995, New Zealand stated: “Discrimination between combatants and those who are not directly involved in armed conflict is a fundamental principle of international humanitarian law.” 
New Zealand, Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, 20 June 1995, § 71.

Nigeria
According to the Report on the Practice of Nigeria, it is Nigeria’s opinio juris that the principle of distinction between combatants and civilians is part of customary international law. 
Report on the Practice of Nigeria, 1997, Chapter 1.1.

Norway
In 2009, in a statement on “Cluster Munitions and the Oslo Process” at a NATO Parliamentary Assembly, Norway’s Deputy Minister of Defence (State Secretary) stated:
[A]ll States in all conflicts and operations have an obligation under international humanitarian law to separate between civilians on the one hand and combatants on the other, the first being entitled to protection and respect in situations of armed conflict. This is one of the most fundamental principles of the Law of Armed Conflict or International Humanitarian Law. 
Norway, Statement by the Deputy Minister of Defence (State Secretary) on “Cluster Munitions and the Oslo Process”, 23 May 2009.

In 2009, in a statement at the Second Review Conference of the Ottawa Convention on Anti-Personnel Mines, Norway’s Minister of Foreign Affairs stated: “The principle of distinction is a cornerstone of all international humanitarian law instruments.” 
Norway, Statement by the Minister of Foreign Affairs at the Second Review Conference of the Ottawa Convention on Anti-Personnel Mines, 3 December 2009.

Philippines
In 1991, in a Letter Directive to Commanders of Major Services and Area Commands, the Chief of Staff of the armed forces of the Philippines stated that all units must distinguish between combatants and the civilian population in order to ensure that civilians receive the respect and protection to which they are entitled. 
Philippines, Letter Directive to Commanders of Major Services and Area Commands, Office of the Chief of Staff, 1991, § 3a.

Saudi Arabia
In its written statement submitted to the ICJ in Legal Consequences of the Construction of a Wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territory in 2004, Saudi Arabia stated:
The Separation Wall imposes suffering and hardship, which does not distinguish between the civilian population and combatants. The Declaration of High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949, 5 December 2001, makes clear the obligation of the occupying Power to make such distinctions:
“The participating High Contracting Parties call upon the parties to the conflict to ensure respect for and protection of the civilian population and civilian objects and to distinguish at all times between the civilian population and combatants and between civilian objects and military objectives. They also call upon the parties to abstain from any measures of brutality and violence against the civilian population whether applied by civilian or military agents and to abstain from exposing the civilian population to military operations.” 
Saudi Arabia, Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Legal Consequences of the Construction of a Wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, 30 January 2004, p. 14.

Solomon Islands
In its written statement submitted to the ICJ in the Nuclear Weapons case in 1995, Solomon Islands stated:
Under international law it is clear beyond any doubt that the use of a nuclear weapon against civilians, whatever the nature or size and destructive power of the weapon, will be rendered illegal by virtue of the application of the customary rule which states that belligerents must always distinguish between combatants and non-combatants and limit their attack only to the former. This is an old and well-established rule which has achieved universal acceptance. 
Solomon Islands, Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, 19 June 1995, § 3.47; see also Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons (WHO) case, 10 June 1994, § 3.38.

Somalia
In 2011, in its report to the Human Rights Council, Somalia stated: “The Government forces are also bound to respect customary IHL rules relating to the prohibited methods and means of warfare[,] including the [principle] of distinction”. 
Somalia, Report to the Human Rights Council, 11 April 2011, UN Doc. A/HRC/WG.6/11/SOM/1, § 76.

In 2011, during the consideration of Somalia’s report to the Human Rights Council, a statement of the delegation of Somalia was summarized by the Council as follows: “The principle … of distinction … must be respected in the conduct of military operations.” 
Somalia, Statement by the Delegation of Somalia before the Human Rights Council during the consideration of the report of Somalia, published in the Report of the Working Group of the Human Rights Council on the Universal Periodic Review, 11 July 2011, UN Doc. A/HRC/18/6, § 68.

In 2011, in its comments on the concluding observations of the Human Rights Council concerning Somalia’s report, Somalia’s Transitional Federal Government stated: “The Government is committed to … taking all necessary measures to … ensure compliance with IHL including the core principles of distinction between combatants and civilians”. 
Somalia, Comments by the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia on the concluding observations of the Human Rights Council concerning the report of Somalia, submitted 21 September 2011, § 98.73.

South Africa
In its consideration of the legality of the attack by the South African defence forces on the SWAPO base/refugee camp at Kassinga in Angola in 1978, the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission stated: “International humanitarian law stipulates that a distinction must at all times be made between persons taking part in hostilities and civilians.” 
South Africa, Truth and Reconciliation Commission Report, 1998, Vol. 2, pp. 52–55, §§ 44–45.

Spain
In 2010, in its report to the UN General Assembly on the status of the 1977 Additional Protocols, Spain stated:
Article 85 entitled “Principle of Humanity”, contained in Title IV on Operations [of the Royal Ordinances for the Armed Forces (2009)] clearly embodies the spirit of the [1949] Geneva Convention and its [1977] Additional Protocols, as it provides that “[the] … conduct [of members of the armed forces] in any conflict or military operation must conform to the applicable rules of the international treaties on international humanitarian law to which Spain is a party”.
That is further developed in Chapter VI on Ethics in Operations, which goes into specific duties under international humanitarian law … the principle of the distinction between civilians and combatants. 
Spain, Report on the Status of the Protocols Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and relating to the protection of victims of armed conflict, 5 May 2010, Section 2.

Sweden
In 2007, in an answer to a question in Parliament, the Swedish Minister of Trade stated:
Then we have the humanitarian law principles regarding distinction, proportionality and unnecessary suffering, to which particular attention should be given. This means that a distinction must be drawn between military targets on the one hand and the civilian population and its property on the other, and that attacks may only be targeted at military targets. 
Sweden, Answer by the Minister of Trade to a Parliamentary interpellation on the sale of cluster munitions to the United States, 13 November 2007, Parliamentary Protocol 2007/08:23, § 18, Anf. 124.

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
In its written statement submitted to the ICJ in the Nuclear Weapons case in 1995, the United Kingdom stated: “The parties to an armed conflict are required to discriminate between civilians and civilian objects on the one hand and combatants and military objectives on the other and to direct their attacks only against the latter.” 
United Kingdom, Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, 16 June 1995, § 3.67.

In 2003, in reply to a written question in the House of Commons, the UK Minister of State for the Armed Forces, Ministry of Defence, wrote: “Cluster bombs have been used against targets for which they were the most appropriate available weapon and where they could be used in accordance with international law, including with the principles of proportionality and discrimination.” 
United Kingdom, House of Commons, Written answer by the Minister of State for the Armed Forces, Ministry of Defence, Hansard, 8 April 2003, Vol. 403, Written Answers, col. 139W.

In 2003, in reply to a written question in the House of Commons asking whether he would “make it his policy not to use cluster bombs in urban or populated areas in Iraq”, the UK Secretary of State for Defence wrote:
Cluster bombs are only used strictly in accordance with international law. This includes the principles of distinction and proportionality as well as precautionary measures to be taken in planning and conducting an attack, as contained in the First Additional Protocol of 1977 to the Geneva Conventions of 1949. The targeting process takes account of these principles in matching the type of weapon used to the target to be attacked. There will be circumstances when it would be considered more appropriate to use other munitions than cluster bombs. These circumstances are more likely to arise in urban or populated areas as cluster bombs engage targets that cover an area. 
United Kingdom, House of Commons, Written answer by the Secretary of State for Defence, Hansard, 14 April 2003, Vol. 403, Written Answers, col. 571W.

The UK Government Strategy on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict (2010) states: “IHL requires parties to a conflict to respect and protect civilians. In the conduct of military operations they must distinguish at all times between combatants and civilians”. 
United Kingdom, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Government Strategy on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict, March 2010, p. 4.

United States of America
In explaining the US government’s position on the basic principles applicable in armed conflicts before the Third Committee of the UN General Assembly in 1968, the US representative stated that the principle of distinction, as set out in draft General Assembly Resolution 2444 (XXIII), constituted a reaffirmation of existing international law. 
United States, Statement before the Third Committee of the UN General Assembly, UN Doc. A/C.3/SR.1634, 10 December 1968.

In 1991, in response to an ICRC memorandum on the applicability of IHL in the Gulf region, the US Department of the Army pointed out that “the obligation of distinguishing combatants and military objectives from civilians and civilian objects is a shared responsibility of the attacker, defender, and the civilian population as such”. 
United States, Letter from the Department of the Army to the legal adviser of the US Army forces deployed in the Gulf region, 11 January 1991, § 8(E), Report on US Practice, 1997, Chapter 1.4.

In 1992, in its final report to Congress on the conduct of the Gulf War, the US Department of Defense stated that Article 48 of the 1977 Additional Protocol I “is generally regarded as a codification of the customary practice of nations, and therefore binding on all”. 
United States, Department of Defense, Final Report to Congress on the Conduct of the Persian Gulf War, 10 April 1992, Appendix O, The Role of the Law of War, ILM, Vol. 31, 1992, p. 625.

The law of war with respect to targeting, collateral damage and collateral civilian casualties is derived from the principle of discrimination; that is, the necessity for distinguishing between combatants, who may be attacked, and noncombatants, against whom an intentional attack may not be directed, and between legitimate military targets and civilian objects.  
United States, Department of Defense, Final Report to Congress on the Conduct of the Persian Gulf War, 10 April 1992, Appendix O, The Role of the Law of War, ILM, Vol. 31, 1992, p. 621.

According to the Report on US Practice: “It is the opinio juris of the United States that … a distinction must be made between persons taking part in the hostilities and the civilian population to the effect that the civilians be spared as much as possible.” 
Report on US Practice, 1997, Chapter 1.4.

In March 2010, in a speech given at the Annual Meeting of the American Society of International Law, the US State Department’s Legal Adviser stated:
[T]his Administration has carefully reviewed the rules governing targeting operations to ensure that these operations are conducted consistently with law of war principles, including:
- First, the principle of distinction, which requires that attacks be limited to military objectives and that civilians or civilian objects shall not be the object of the attack;

In U.S. operations against al-Qaeda and its associated forces – including lethal operations conducted with the use of unmanned aerial vehicles – great care is taken to adhere to these principles in both planning and execution, to ensure that only legitimate objectives are targeted. 
United States, “The Obama Administration and International Law”, Speech by the Legal Adviser of the US Department of State given at the Annual Meeting of the American Society of International Law, Washington DC, 25 March 2010.
[emphasis in original]
Viet Nam
In 2008, during a debate in the UN Security Council on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the representative of Viet Nam stated that “parties to armed conflict should comply with the [principle] … of humanitarian law relating to distinction”. 
Viet Nam, Statement before the UN Security Council during a debate on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, 27 May 2008, p. 14.

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UN General Assembly
In Resolution 2444 (XXIII), adopted in 1968, the UN General Assembly affirmed Resolution XXVIII of the 20th International Conference of the Red Cross and the basic humanitarian principle applicable in all armed conflicts laid down therein that “distinction must be made at all times between persons taking part in the hostilities and members of the civilian population to the effect that the latter be spared as much as possible”. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 2444 (XXIII), 19 December 1968, § 1(c), voting record: 111-0-0-15.

In Resolution 2675 (XXV), adopted in 1970, the UN General Assembly recalled that “in the conduct of military operations during armed conflict, a distinction must be made at all times between persons actively taking part in the hostilities and civilian populations”. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 2675 (XXV), 9 December 1970, § 2, voting record: 109-0-8-10.

UN Secretary-General
In 1998, in a report on protection for humanitarian assistance to refugees and others in conflict situations, the UN Secretary-General noted that the changing pattern of conflicts in recent years had dramatically worsened the problem of compliance with international law and listed as an example that “in situations of internal conflicts, whole societies are often mobilized for war and it is difficult to distinguish between combatants and non-combatants”. 
UN Secretary-General, Report on protection for humanitarian assistance to refugees and others in conflict situations, UN Doc. S/1998/883, 22 September 1998, § 12.

The report pursuant to paragraph 5 of UN Security Council resolution 837 (1993) on the investigation into the 5 June 1993 attack on UN forces in Somalia noted:
The [1949 Geneva] Conventions were designed to cover inter-State wars and large-scale civil wars. But the principles they embody have a wider scope. Plainly a part of contemporary international customary law, they are applicable wherever political ends are sought through military means. No principle is more central to the humanitarian law of war than the obligation to respect the distinction between combatants and non-combatants. That principle is violated and criminal responsibility thereby incurred when organizations deliberately target civilians or when they use civilians as shields or otherwise demonstrate a wanton indifference to the protection of non-combatants. 
Report pursuant to paragraph 5 of Security Council resolution 837 (1993) on the investigation into the 5 June 1993 attack on United Nations forces in Somalia conducted on behalf of the UN Security Council, UN Doc. S/26351, 24 August 1993, Annex, § 9.

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European Union
In a declaration adopted on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Geneva Conventions in 1999, the EU stated that it deplored the persistence of violations of IHL. It added that present-day conflicts often did not make the important distinction between combatants and civilians and that children and other vulnerable groups were targets of the conflicts. 
EU, Declaration on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Geneva Conventions, 12 August 1999, Pesc/99/77 10394/99 (presse 247).

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International Conference of the Red Cross (1965)
The 20th International Conference of the Red Cross in 1965 solemnly declared:
All Governments and other authorities responsible for action in armed conflicts should conform at least to the following principles: … that distinction must be made at all times between persons taking part in the hostilities and members of the civilian population to the effect that the latter be spared as much as possible. 
20th International Conference of the Red Cross, Vienna, 2–9 October 1965, Res. XXVIII.

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International Court of Justice
In its advisory opinion in the Nuclear Weapons case in 1996, the ICJ considered the principle of distinction between combatants and non-combatants to be one of the “cardinal principles contained in the texts constituting the fabric of humanitarian law” and also one of the “intransgressible principles of international customary law”. 
ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, Advisory Opinion, 8 July 1996, §§ 78–79.

International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia
In its judgment in the Blaškić case in 2000, the ICTY held that “the parties to the conflict are obliged to attempt to distinguish between military targets and civilian persons”. 
ICTY, Blaškić case, Judgment, 3 March 2000, § 180.

In its final report to the ICTY Prosecutor in 2000, the Committee Established to Review the 1999 NATO Bombing Campaign Against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia stated: “One of the principles underlying IHL is the principle of distinction, which obligates military commanders to distinguish between military objectives and civilian persons or objects.” 
ICTY, Final Report to the Prosecutor by the Committee Established to Review the NATO Bombing Campaign Against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, The Hague, 14 June 2000, § 29.

Special Court for Sierra Leone
In the Sesay case before the SCSL, the accused Sesay and Kallon, senior commanders in the Revolutionary United Front (RUF), Junta and Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC)/RUF forces, and the accused Gbao, senior commander in the RUF and AFRC/RUF forces, were each charged with … eight counts of war crimes, and two counts of other serious violations of international humanitarian law. In its judgment in the case in 2009, the Trial Chamber adopted “the view of the ICTY Appeals Chamber in the Blaskić case that there is an absolute prohibition against targeting civilians in customary international law”. 
SCSL, Sesay case, Judgment, 2 March 2009, § 81.
(footnote in original omitted)
Eritrea-Ethiopia Claims Commission
In its Western Front, Aerial Bombardment and Related Claims (Eritrea’s Claim) partial award in 2005, the Eritrea-Ethiopia Claims Commission, in considering the principle of distinction between civilians and combatants, stated:
The provisions of [the 1977 Additional] Geneva Protocol I … represent the best and most recent efforts of the international community to state the law on the protection of the civilian population against the effects of hostilities. The Commission believes that those provisions reflect a generally shared view that some of the practices of the Second World War … should be outlawed for the future, and the Commission considers them to express customary international humanitarian law. Those provisions … emphasize the importance of distinguishing between civilians and combatants. 
Eritrea-Ethiopia Claims Commission, Western Front, Aerial Bombardment and Related Claims, Eritrea’s Claim, Partial Award, 19 December 2005, § 95.
[footnotes in original omitted]
Inter-American Commission on Human Rights
In 1997, in the case concerning the events at La Tablada in Argentina, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights underlined the obligation of the contending parties, on the basis of common Article 3 of the 1949 Geneva Conventions and customary principles applicable to all armed conflicts, “to distinguish in their targeting between civilians and combatants and other lawful military objectives”. 
Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, Case 11.137 (Argentina), Report, 18 November 1997, § 177.

According to an Inter-American Commission on Human Rights report on the human rights situation in Colombia issued in 1999, IHL prohibits
the launching of attacks against the civilian population and requires the parties to an armed conflict, at all times, to make a distinction between members of the civilian population and persons actively taking part in the hostilities and to direct their attacks only against the latter and, inferentially, other legitimate military objectives. 
Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, Third report on the human rights situation in Colombia, Doc. OEA/Ser.L/V/II.102 Doc. 9 rev. 1, 26 February 1999, § 40.

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ICRC
To fulfil its task of disseminating IHL, the ICRC has delegates around the world teaching armed and security forces that a distinction must be made between combatants and civilians at all times. 
Frédéric de Mulinen, Handbook on the Law of War for Armed Forces, ICRC, Geneva, 1987, § 387.

In an appeal issued in 1979 with respect to the conflict in Rhodesia/Zimbabwe, the ICRC stated: “Fundamental humanitarian rules accepted by all nations – such as the obligation to distinguish between combatants and civilians, and to refrain from violence against the latter – have been largely ignored.”  
ICRC, Conflict in Southern Africa: ICRC appeal, 19 March 1979, § 2, IRRC, No. 209, 1979, p. 87.

In a press release issued in 1984 in the context of the Iran–Iraq War, the ICRC stated:
In violation of the laws and customs of war, and in particular of the essential principle that military targets must be distinguished from civilian persons and objects, the Iraqi armed forces have continued to bomb Iranian civilian zones. 
ICRC, Press Release No. 1480, Conflict between Iran and Iraq and breaches of international humanitarian law: a renewed ICRC appeal, 15 February 1984, IRRC, No. 239, 1984, pp. 113–115.

In several press releases issued in 1992, the ICRC reminded the parties to the armed conflict in Afghanistan of their duty to distinguish at all times between combatants and civilians. 
ICRC, Press Release No. 1712, Afghanistan: Appeal for Compliance with Humanitarian Rules, 5 May 1992; Press Release No. 1724, Kabul: ICRC urges respect for civilians as medical facilities struggle to cope, 20 July 1992; Press Release No. 1726, Afghanistan: Renewed ICRC Appeal for Compliance with Humanitarian Rules, 14 August 1992.

In a Memorandum on the Applicability of International Humanitarian Law sent in 1990 to all States party to the Geneva Conventions in the context of the Gulf War, the ICRC stated:
The following general rules are recognized as binding on any party to an armed conflict: … a distinction must be made in all circumstances between combatants and military objectives on the one hand, and civilians and civilian objects on the other. 
ICRC, Memorandum on the Applicability of International Humanitarian Law, 14 December 1990, § II, IRRC, No. 280, 1991, p. 24.

In a communication to the press in 1993, the ICRC reminded the parties to the conflict in Georgia of their obligation “to distinguish at all times between combatants and military objectives on the one hand, and civilians and civilian objects on the other”. 
ICRC, Communication to the Press No. 93/31, Georgia: ICRC activities in Abkhazia, 20 September 1993.

In a communication to the press in 1993, the ICRC reminded the parties to the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh of their obligation “to distinguish at all times between combatants and military objectives on the one hand and civilians and civilian property on the other”. 
ICRC, Communication to the Press No. 93/25, Nagorno-Karabakh conflict: 60,000 civilians flee fighting in south-western Azerbaijan, 19 August 1993.

In 1994, in a Memorandum on Respect for International Humanitarian Law in Angola, the ICRC stated: “A clear distinction must be made in all circumstances between civilians and civilian objects on the one hand and combatants and military objectives on the other.” 
ICRC, Memorandum on Respect for International Humanitarian Law in Angola, 8 June 1994, § II, IRRC, No. 320, 1997, p. 503.

In 1994, in a Memorandum on Compliance with International Humanitarian Law by the Forces Participating in Opération Turquoise in the Great Lakes region, the ICRC stated:
A clear distinction must be made, in all circumstances, between civilian persons who do not participate in confrontations and refrain from acts of violence and civilian objects on the one hand, and combatants and military objectives on the other. 
ICRC, Memorandum on Compliance with International Humanitarian Law by the Forces Participating in Opération Turquoise, 23 June 1994, § II, reprinted in Marco Sassòli and Antoine A. Bouvier, How Does Law Protect in War?, ICRC, Geneva, 1999, p. 1308.

In a communication to the press in 1999, the ICRC called upon all the parties to the internal conflict in Sierra Leone to abide by the rules of IHL and in particular to make a clear distinction between combatants and civilians so as to protect persons not or no longer taking part in hostilities. 
ICRC, Communication to the Press No. 99/02, Sierra Leone: ICRC pulls out of Freetown, 14 January 1999.

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Institute of International Law
In a resolution adopted at its Edinburgh Session in 1969, the Institute of International Law recalled:
The obligation to respect the distinction between military objectives and non-military objects, as well as between persons participating in the hostilities and members of the civilian population, remains a fundamental principle of the international law in force. 
Institute of International Law, Edinburgh Session, Resolution on the Distinction between Military Objectives and Non-military Objects in General and Particularly the Problems Associated with Weapons of Mass Destruction, 9 September 1969, § 1.

Americas Watch
In 1985, in a report on violations of the laws of war in Nicaragua, Americas Watch stated:
Certain general principles of the customary law of armed conflict were recognized in U.N. General Assembly Resolution 2444 (XXIII), 13 January 1969, which was adopted by unanimous vote. This resolution affirms … that distinction must be made at all times between persons taking part in the hostilities and members of the civilian population. 
Americas Watch, Violations of the Laws of War by Both Sides in Nicaragua: 1981–1985, New York, March 1985, pp. 19–20.

Africa Watch
In 1989, in a report on violations of the laws of war in Angola, Africa Watch stated:
United Nations General Assembly Resolution 2444, Respect for Human Rights in Armed Conflicts … adopted by unanimous vote on December 19, 1969, expressly recognized this customary principle of civilian immunity and its complementary principle requiring the warring parties to distinguish civilians from combatants at all times … Furthermore, the International Committee of the Red Cross has long regarded these principles as basic rules of the laws of war that apply in all armed conflicts. The United States government also has expressly recognized these principles as declaratory of existing customary international law. 
Africa Watch, Angola: Violations of the Laws of War by Both Sides, New York, April 1989, p. 126.

International Institute of Humanitarian Law
The Rules of International Humanitarian Law Governing the Conduct of Hostilities in Non-international Armed Conflicts, adopted in 1990 by the Council of the International Institute of Humanitarian Law, provides: “The obligation to distinguish between combatants and civilians is a general rule applicable in non-international armed conflicts.” The commentary on this rule notes that it is based on the St. Petersburg Declaration, Article 25 of the Hague Regulations, UN General Assembly Resolutions 2444 (XXIII) and 2675 (XXV), common Article 3 of the 1949 Geneva Conventions and Article 13(2) of the 1977 Additional Protocol II. 
International Institute of Humanitarian Law, Rules of International Humanitarian Law Governing the Conduct of Hostilities in Non-international Armed Conflicts, Rule A1 and Commentary, IRRC, No. 278, 1990, Commentary, pp. 387–388.

Helsinki Watch
In 1992, in a report on war crimes committed in the conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Helsinki Watch stated that:
United Nations General Assembly Resolution 2444, adopted by unanimous vote on December 19, 1969, expressly recognized the customary law principle of civilian immunity and its complementary principle requiring the warring parties to distinguish civilians from combatants at all times. 
Helsinki Watch, War Crimes in Bosnia-Hercegovina, Vol. I, New York, August 1992, p. 203.

International Institute of Humanitarian Law
In 1995, the International Institute of Humanitarian Law stated that any declaration on minimum humanitarian standards should be based on “principles … of jus cogens, expressing basic humanitarian considerations[s] which are recognized to be universally binding”. According to the Institute, this includes the principle that “in the case where the situation is characterized by hostilities, the difference between combatants and civilians shall be made”. 
International Institute of Humanitarian Law, Comments on the Turku Declaration of Minimum Humanitarian Standards submitted to the UN Secretary-General, §§ 1 and 12, reprinted in Report of the Secretary-General prepared pursuant to UN Commission on Human Rights resolution 1995/29, UN Doc. E/CN.4/1996/80, 28 November 1995, pp. 8–9.


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St. Petersburg Declaration
The preamble to the 1868 St. Petersburg Declaration states: “[T]he only legitimate object which States should endeavour to accomplish during war is to weaken the military forces of the enemy.” 
Declaration Renouncing the Use, in Time of War, of Explosive Projectiles Under 400 Grammes Weight, St. Petersburg, 29 November–11 December 1868, preamble.

Additional Protocol I
Article 48 of the 1977 Additional Protocol I states: “Parties to the conflict … shall direct their operations only against military objectives.” 
Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts (Protocol I), Geneva, 8 June 1977, Article 48. Article 48 was adopted by consensus. CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.41, 26 May 1977, p. 161.

Article 52(2) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I states: “Attacks shall be limited strictly to military objectives.” 
Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts (Protocol I), Geneva, 8 June 1977, Article 52(2). Article 52 was adopted by 79 votes in favour, none against and 7 abstentions. CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.41, 26 May 1977, p. 168.

Additional Protocol II (draft)
Article 24(1) of the draft Additional Protocol II submitted by the ICRC to the CDDH provided: “In order to ensure respect for the civilian population, the parties to the conflict shall confine their operations to the destruction or weakening of the military resources of the adversary.” 
CDDH, Official Records, Vol. I, Part Three, Draft Additional Protocols, June 1973, p. 37.

Convention on Cluster Munitions
According to the preamble to the 2008 Convention on Cluster Munitions, States Parties based their agreement on the prohibition of the use, development, production, stockpiling, retention or transfer of cluster munitions on various principles of IHL, including that they will “distinguish between the civilian population and combatants and between civilian objects and military objectives and accordingly direct their operations against military objectives only”. 
Convention on Cluster Munitions, Dublin, 30 May 2008, preamble, § 20.

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Lieber Code
Article 15 of the 1863 Lieber Code states: “Military necessity admits of all direct destruction of life or limb of ‘armed’ enemies … it allows of the capturing of every armed enemy, and every enemy of importance to the hostile government, or of peculiar danger to the captor.” 
Instructions for the Government of Armies of the United States in the Field, prepared by Francis Lieber, promulgated as General Order No. 100 by President Abraham Lincoln, Washington D.C., 24 April 1863, Article 15.

Oxford Manual
The commentary on Article 3 of the 1880 Oxford Manual refers to the principle laid down in the 1868 St. Petersburg Declaration: “The only legitimate end which States may have in war being to weaken the military strength of the enemy.” 
The Laws of War on Land, adopted by the Institute of International Law, Oxford, 9 September 1880, Commentary on Article 3.

Hague Rules of Air Warfare
According to Article 24(2) of the 1923 Hague Rules of Air Warfare, “military forces” are military objectives. 
Rules concerning the Control of Wireless Telegraphy in Time of War and Air Warfare, Part II, drafted by a Commission of Jurists, The Hague, December 1922–February 1923, Article 24(2).

New Delhi Draft Rules
Article 7 of the 1956 New Delhi Draft Rules states: “In order to limit the dangers incurred by the civilian population, attacks may only be directed against military objectives.” 
Draft Rules for the Limitation of the Dangers Incurred by the Civilian Population in Time of War, drafted by the International Committee of the Red Cross, September 1956, submitted to governments for their consideration on behalf of the 19th International Conference of the Red Cross, New Delhi, 28 October–7 November, Res. XIII, Article 7.

Memorandum of Understanding on the Application of IHL between Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
Paragraph 6 of the 1991 Memorandum of Understanding on the Application of IHL between Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia requires that hostilities be conducted in accordance with Articles 48 and 52(2) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I. 
Memorandum of Understanding on the Application of International Humanitarian Law between Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Geneva, 27 November 1991, § 6.

Agreement on the Application of IHL between the Parties to the Conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Paragraph 2.5 of the 1992 Agreement on the Application of IHL between the Parties to the Conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina requires that hostilities be conducted in accordance with Articles 48 and 52(2) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I. 
Agreement between Representatives of Mr. Alija Izetbegović (President of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina and President of the Party of Democratic Action), Representatives of Mr. Radovan Karadžić (President of the Serbian Democratic Party), and Representative of Mr. Miljenko Brkić (President of the Croatian Democratic Community), Geneva, 22 May 1992, § 2.5.

San Remo Manual
Paragraph 41 of the 1994 San Remo Manual provides: “Attacks shall be limited strictly to military objectives.” 
Louise Doswald-Beck (ed.), San Remo Manual on International Law Applicable to Armed Conflicts at Sea, 12 June 1994, Prepared by international lawyers and naval experts convened by the International Institute of Humanitarian Law, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1995, § 41.

UN Secretary-General’s Bulletin
Section 5.1 of the 1999 UN Secretary-General’s Bulletin states: “Military operations shall be directed only against combatants and military objectives.” 
Observance by United Nations Forces of International Humanitarian Law, Secretary-General’s Bulletin, UN Secretariat, UN Doc. ST/SGB/1999/13, 6 August 1999, Section 5.1.

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Australia
Australia’s Defence Force Manual (1994) states: “Military operations must only be conducted against enemy armed forces and military objects.” 
Australia, Manual on Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Force Publication, Operations Series, ADFP 37 – Interim Edition, 1994, § 210.

Australia’s LOAC Manual (2006) states: “Military operations must only be conducted against military objectives, including combatants”. 
Australia, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Doctrine Publication 06.4, Australian Defence Headquarters, 11 May 2006, § 2.11; see also § 5.16.

Belgium
Belgium’s Teaching Manual for Soldiers states that only enemy combatants may be attacked. 
Belgium, Droit de la Guerre, Dossier d’Instruction pour Soldat, à l’attention des officiers instructeurs, JS3, Etat-Major Général, Forces Armées belges (undated), pp. 7, 10, 14 and 41.

Benin
Benin’s Military Manual (1995) states: “A combatant must fight only combatants.” 
Benin, Le Droit de la Guerre, III fascicules, Forces Armées du Bénin, Ministère de la Défense nationale, 1995, Fascicule I, p. 17; see also Fascicule II, p. 18.

Burundi
Burundi’s Regulations on International Humanitarian Law (2007) states: “Only combatants … may be attacked.” 
Burundi, Règlement n° 98 sur le droit international humanitaire, Ministère de la Défense Nationale et des Anciens Combattants, Projet “Moralisation” (BDI/B-05), August 2007, Part I bis, p. 34; see also Part I bis, pp. 9, 25, 63 and 82.

Canada
Canada’s LOAC Manual (1999) states: “Combatants are legitimate targets and may be attacked.” 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Level, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 1999, p. 4-2, § 12.

Canada’s Code of Conduct (2001) requires Canadian forces to “engage only opposing forces and military objectives”. 
Canada, Code of Conduct for CF Personnel, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 4 June 2001, Rule 1.

Canada’s LOAC Manual (2001) states:
406. Definition of legitimate targets
1. “Legitimate targets” include combatants, unlawful combatants and military objectives.

408. Combatants
1. Combatants are legitimate targets and may be attacked unless they have been captured, surrendered, expressed a clear intention to surrender, or are hors de combat (i.e., out of combat), provided they refrain from hostile acts and do not attempt to escape …
409. Airborne troops
1. Airborne troops are combatants and therefore legitimate targets. They may be attacked during their descent by parachute from aircraft. …
410. Unlawful combatants
1. Unlawful combatants are legitimate targets for such time as they take a direct part in hostilities. Unlawful combatants include:
a. civilians (except those who are lawful combatants because they are participating in levée en masse);
b. mercenaries; and
c. spies. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, §§ 406.1 and 408–410.1.

Rule 1 of Canada’s Code of Conduct (2005) instructs CF (Canadian Forces) personnel: “Engage only opposing forces and military objectives.” 
Canada, Code of Conduct for CF Personnel, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 2005, Rule 1.

1. Rule # 1 is the cornerstone of the Law of Armed Conflict. It is consistent with and in fact reflects two of the Principles of War, namely “selection and maintenance of the aim” and “economy of effort.” Any deviation from the military aim jeopardizes the mission. Thus, whether you are involved in defensive or offensive operations, your effort must be directed toward the continued maintenance of the aim. It would be considered a waste of resources to engage forces that are not hostile or that have been rendered incapable of further hostilities, or to attack objectives or other objects not used for a military purpose. It is unlawful as well as unsound from an operational point of view.

3. Force used during operations must be directed against opposing forces and military objectives. Therefore, civilians not taking part in hostilities must not be targeted. Rule #1 not only makes sense morally but also helps to ensure the most efficient use of military resources. In simple terms, “warriors fight warriors.” 
Canada, Code of Conduct for CF Personnel, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 2005, Rule 1, §§ 1 and 3.

Central African Republic
The Central African Republic’s Instructor’s Manual (1999) states in Volume 1 (Basic and team leader instruction): “Combatants must: … fight only other combatants”. 
Central African Republic, Le Droit de la Guerre, Fascicule No. 1: Formation élémentaire toutes armés (FETA), formation commune de base (FCB), certificat d’aptitude technique No. 1 (Chef d’équipe), Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Centrafricaines, 1999, Chapter III, Section IV.

Chad
Chad’s Instructor’s Manual (2006) states: “Fighting may only be directed against enemy combatants.” 
Chad, Droit international humanitaire, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les forces armées et de sécurité, Ministère de la Défense, Présidence de la République, Etat-major des Armées, 2006, p. 87; see also pp. 16, 26, 35 and 47.

Colombia
Colombia’s Circular on Fundamental Rules of IHL (1992) states: “Neither the civilian population, as such, nor individual civilians may be made the object of attack. Attacks may only be directed against military objectives.” 
Colombia, Transcripción Normas Fundamentales del Derecho Humanitario Aplicables en los Conflictos Armados, Circular No. 033/DIPL-SERPO-526, Policía Nacional, Dirección General, Santafé de Bogotá, 14 May 1992, § 7.

Colombia’s Instructors’ Manual (1999) states that it is a rule of combat to “fight only combatants”. 
Colombia, Derechos Humanos & Derecho Internacional Humanitario – Manual de Instrucción de la Guía de Conducta para el Soldado e Infante de Marina , Ministerio de Defensa Nacional, Oficina de Derechos Humanos, Fuerzas Militares de Colombia, Santafé de Bogotá, 1999, p. 15.

Côte d’Ivoire
Côte d’Ivoire’s Teaching Manual (2007) provides in Book I (Basic instruction):
Lesson 1 Basic notions of IHL

The principle of distinction specifies who and what can be attacked and who and what cannot be attacked.
- Who and what can be attacked?
- Combatants,

Lesson 3. Rules of behaviour in combat

[Basic Rule No. 3]:
Only fight enemy combatants, and only attack military objectives.
[Observation]:
- These two rules follow from the principle of distinction, which determines whom to attack during an armed conflict. 
Côte d’Ivoire, Droit de la guerre, Manuel d’instruction, Livre I: Instruction de base, Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Nationales, November 2007, pp. 13–14, 18 and 21; see also Droit de la guerre, Manuel d’instruction, Livre II: Instruction du gradé et du cadre, Manuel de l’instructeur, Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Nationales, November 2007, p. 16; Droit de la guerre, Manuel d’instruction, Livre III, Tome 1: Instruction de l’élève officier d’active de 1ère année, Manuel de l’élève, Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Nationales, November 2007, p. 39; Droit de la guerre, Manuel d’instruction, Livre IV: Instruction du chef de section et du commandant de compagnie, Manuel de l’élève, Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Nationales, November 2007, p. 65.

II.1. Distinction
At all times, a distinction must be clearly made between combatants and civilians or the civilian population as such. Combatants can be attacked of course, insofar as they are not hors de combat. 
Côte d’Ivoire, Droit de la guerre, Manuel d’instruction, Livre III, Tome 1: Instruction de l’élève officier d’active de 1ère année, Manuel de l’élève, Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Nationales, November 2007, p. 12; see also Droit de la guerre, Manuel d’instruction, Livre III, Tome 2: Instruction de l’élève officier d’active de 2ème année, Manuel de l’instructeur, Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Nationales, November 2007, p. 13.

II.1.3. Combatants
Combatants are legitimate objectives and can be attacked, unless they have been captured, have surrendered, have clearly expressed their intention to surrender or are hors de combat, provided that they abstain from any hostile act and do not attempt to escape.

II.1.4. Airborne troops
Airborne troops are combatants and, consequently, legitimate objectives. They can be attacked while parachuting from aircraft. 
Côte d’Ivoire, Droit de la guerre, Manuel d’instruction, Livre IV: Instruction du chef de section et du commandant de compagnie, Manuel de l’élève, Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Nationales, November 2007, pp. 25–26.

Croatia
Croatia’s LOAC Compendium (1991) includes armed forces among military objectives. 
Croatia, Compendium “Law of Armed Conflicts”, Republic of Croatia, Ministry of Defence, 1991, p. 7.

Croatia’s Commanders’ Manual (1992) states: “Combatants may be attacked.” 
Croatia, Basic Rules of the Law of Armed Conflicts – Commanders’ Manual, Republic of Croatia, Ministry of Defence, 1992, § 8.

Djibouti
Djibouti’s Manual on International Humanitarian Law (2004) states under the heading “Rules of Combat”: “Fight only combatants.” 
Djibouti, Manuel sur le droit international humanitaire et les droits de l’homme applicables au travail du policier, Ministère de l’Intérieur, Direction Générale de la Police, 2004, p. 7.

Dominican Republic
The Dominican Republic’s Military Manual (1980) states that only combatants are proper targets for attack. 
Dominican Republic, La Conducta en Combate según las Leyes de la Guerra, Escuela Superior de las FF. AA. “General de Brigada Pablo Duarte”, Secretaría de Estado de las Fuerzas Armadas, May 1980, p. 3.

Ecuador
Ecuador’s Naval Manual (1989) states that only attacks against combatants and other military objectives are lawful. 
Ecuador, Aspectos Importantes del Derecho Internacional Marítimo que Deben Tener Presente los Comandantes de los Buques, Academia de Guerra Naval, 1989, § 8.1.

France
France’s LOAC Summary Note (1992) states that combatants are military objectives. 
France, Fiche de Synthèse sur les Règles Applicables dans les Conflits Armés, Note No. 432/DEF/EMA/OL.2/NP, Général de Corps d’Armée Voinot (pour l’Amiral Lanxade, Chef d’Etat-major des Armées), 1992, § 1.2.

Germany
Germany’s Military Manual (1992) provides that military objectives include, in particular, armed forces. 
Germany, Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflicts – Manual, DSK VV207320067, edited by The Federal Ministry of Defence of the Federal Republic of Germany, VR II 3, August 1992, English translation of ZDv 15/2, Humanitäres Völkerrecht in bewaffneten Konflikten – Handbuch, August 1992, § 443.

Germany’s Soldiers’ Manual (2006) states: “Combat operations may only be directed against the armed forces of the enemy and other military objectives, not however against the civilian population or civilian objects.” 
Germany, Druckschrift Einsatz Nr. 03, Humanitäres Völkerrecht in bewaffneten Konflikten – Grundsätze, Erarbeitet nach ZDv 15/2, Humanitäres Völkerrecht in bewaffneten Konflikten – Handbuch, DSK SF009320187, Bundesministerium der Verteidigung, R II 3, August 2006, p. 3.

Guinea
Guinea’s Soldier’s Manual (2010) states: “Fight only combatants.” 
Guinea, Soldier’s Manual, Ministry of National Defence, 2010, p. 3; see also p. 15.

Hungary
Hungary’s Military Manual (1992) states that armed forces are military objectives. 
Hungary, A Hadijog, Jegyzet a Katonai, Föiskolák Hallgatói Részére, Magyar Honvédség Szolnoki Repülötiszti Föiskola, 1992, p. 18.

Ireland
Ireland’s Basic LOAC Guide (2005) states: “Enemy combatants and military objectives only may be the object of an attack.” 
Ireland, Basic Guide to the Law of Armed Conflict, TP/TRG/01-2005, Director of Defence Forces Training, Department of Defence, July 2005, p. 4.

Israel
Israel’s Manual on the Laws of War (1998) states: “Any soldier (male or female!) in the enemy’s army is a legitimate military target for attack, whether on the battlefield or outside of it.” 
Israel, Laws of War in the Battlefield, Manual, Military Advocate General Headquarters, Military School, 1998, p. 42.

Israel’s Manual on the Rules of Warfare (2006) states: “The fundamental rule is that war should be conducted between armies and each army should only attack the army of the enemy.” 
Israel, Rules of Warfare on the Battlefield, Military Advocate-General’s Corps Command, IDF School of Military Law, Second Edition, 2006, p. 23.

Italy
According to Italy’s IHL Manual (1991), armed forces may be attacked. 
Italy, Manuale di diritto umanitario, Introduzione e Volume I, Usi e convenzioni di Guerra, SMD-G-014, Stato Maggiore della Difesa, I Reparto, Ufficio Addestramento e Regolamenti, Rome, 1991, Vol. I, § 12.

Italy’s LOAC Elementary Rules Manual (1991) states: “Combatants may participate directly in hostilities and may be attacked.” 
Italy, Regole elementari di diritto di guerra, SMD-G-012, Stato Maggiore della Difesa, I Reparto, Ufficio Addestramento e Regolamenti, Rome, 1991, § 8.

Kenya
Kenya’s LOAC Manual (1997) states: “Fighting is only to be directed at the enemy combatant.” 
Kenya, Law of Armed Conflict, Military Basic Course (ORS), 4 Précis, The School of Military Police, 1997, Précis No. 2, p. 15; see also Précis No. 3, p. 2.

Madagascar
Madagascar’s Military Manual (1994) states: “Combatants must fight only enemy combatants.” 
Madagascar, Le Droit des Conflits Armés, Ministère des Forces Armées, August 1994, Fiche No. 1-T, § B; see also Fiche No. 3-O, § 8.

Mexico
Mexico’s Army and Air Force Manual (2009) states:
The underlying idea of this body of law [i.e. IHL] is to humanize war. The three main principles established to this end … [include]:
A. military operations may only be directed against combatants. 
Mexico, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para el Ejército y la Fuerza Área Mexicanos, Ministry of National Defence, June 2009, § 372(A).

Mexico’s IHL Guidelines (2009), in a section titled “Basic rules of conduct in armed conflict”, states: “Fight only enemy combatants”. 
Mexico, Cartilla de Derecho Internacional Humanitario, Ministry of National Defence, 2009, § 14(d).

Netherlands
The Military Manual (1993) of the Netherlands states: “Operations may only be directed against military objectives.” It adds that “combatants who are part of the armed forces” are military objectives “under all circumstances”. 
Netherlands, Toepassing Humanitair Oorlogsrecht, Voorschift No. 27-412/1, Koninklijke Landmacht, Ministerie van Defensie, 1993, pp. V-1 and V-3.

The Military Handbook (1995) of the Netherlands requires that soldiers “attack only combatants”. 
Netherlands, Handboek Militair, Ministerie van Defensie, 1995, p. 7–36.

The Military Manual (2005) of the Netherlands states: “Attacks may be directed only against military targets.”  
Netherlands, Humanitair Oorlogsrecht: Handleiding, Voorschift No. 27-412, Koninklijke Landmacht, Militair Juridische Dienst, 2005, p. 34.

New Zealand
New Zealand’s Military Manual (1992) provides that attacks must be directed against military objectives and that combatants are military objectives. 
New Zealand, Interim Law of Armed Conflict Manual, DM 112, New Zealand Defence Force, Headquarters, Directorate of Legal Services, Wellington, November 1992, p. 5–21, § 515(1) and p. 5–22, § 516(1).

Nigeria
Nigeria’s Military Manual (1994) and Soldiers’ Code of Conduct state that combatants must “fight only combatants”. 
Nigeria, International Humanitarian Law (IHL), Directorate of Legal Services, Nigerian Army, 1994, p. 39, § 5(a); Code of Conduct for Combatants, “The Soldier’s Rules”, Nigerian Army (undated), § 1.

Peru
Peru’s IHL Manual (2004) states: “Non-protected persons … [include] all combatants who take a direct part in the hostilities.” 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial Nº 1394-2004-DE/CCFFAA/CDIH-FFAA, Lima, 1 December 2004, § 33.b.

Peru’s IHL and Human Rights Manual (2010) states: “Non-protected persons are combatants who directly participate in hostilities.” 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario y Derechos Humanos para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial No. 049-2010/DE/VPD, Lima, 21 May 2010, § 34(c), p. 252.

Philippines
The Soldier’s Rules (1989) of the Philippines requires soldiers to “fight only enemy combatants”. 
Philippines, Soldier’s Rules, in Handbook on Discipline, Annex C(I), General Headquarters, Armed Forces of the Philippines, Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo, Quezon City, 1989, § 2.

The Joint Circular on Adherence to IHL and Human Rights (1991) of the Philippines states:
When the use of armed force is inevitable, strict controls must be exercised to insure that only reasonable force necessary for mission accomplishment shall be taken and shall be directed only against hostile elements, not against civilians or non-combatants. 
Philippines, Implementation Guidelines for Presidential Memorandum Order No. 393, dated 9 September 1991, Directing the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippines National Police to Reaffirm their Adherence to the Principles of Humanitarian Law and Human Rights in the Conduct of Security/Police Operations, Joint Circular Number 2-91, Department of National Defense, Department of Interior and Local Government, 1991, § (2)(a)(2).

The AFP Standing Rules of Engagement (2005) of the Philippines provides:
8. General Rules for the Correct Use of Force towards Mission Accomplishment

l. Once a force is declared hostile by appropriate authority, AFP [Armed Forces of the Philippines] units need not observe a hostile act or a demonstration of hostile intent before engaging that force. 
Philippines, AFP Standing Rules of Engagement, Armed Forces of the Philippines, General Headquarters, Office of the Chief of Staff, 1 December 2005, § 8(l).

The Philippine Army Soldier’s Handbook on Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (2006) states: “By International Humanitarian Law, it is authorized to neutralize enemy forces by reasonable means while in combat.” 
Philippines, Philippine Army Soldier’s Handbook on Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law, A Practical Guide for Internal Security Operations, 2006, p. 59, § 4.

Republic of Korea
According to the Republic of Korea’s Military Law Manual (1996), it is only permissible to kill combatants. 
Republic of Korea, Military Law Manual, 1996, p. 86.

Romania
Romania’s Soldiers’ Manual (1991) states that combatants must “fight only combatants”. 
Romania, Manualul Soldatului, Ghid de comportare în luptă, Asociaţia Română de Drept Umanitar (ARDU), 1991, p. 4.

Sierra Leone
Sierra Leone’s Instructor Manual (2007) provides: “Fight only enemy soldiers. This means that civilians are not to be attacked and are not to take part in hostilities.” 
Sierra Leone, The Law of Armed Conflict. Instructor Manual for the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF), Armed Forces Education Centre, September 2007, p. 34.

South Africa
South Africa’s LOAC Manual (1996) requires soldiers in combat to “fight only enemy combatants”. 
South Africa, Presentation on the South African Approach to International Humanitarian Law, Appendix A, Chapter 4: International Humanitarian Law (The Law of Armed Conflict), National Defence Force, 1996, § 25(a). This manual is also included in Chapter 4 of the Draft Civic Education Manual of 1997.

South Africa
South Africa’s Revised Civic Education Manual (2004) requires soldiers in combat to “[f]ight only enemy combatants”. 
South Africa, Revised Civic Education Manual, South African National Defence Force, 2004, Chapter 4, § 48(a).

Spain
Spain’s LOAC Manual (1996) states that the armed forces of the enemy are considered a legitimate target of attack. 
Spain, Orientaciones. El Derecho de los Conflictos Armados, Publicación OR7-004, 2 Tomos, aprobado por el Estado Mayor del Ejército, Division de Operaciones, 18 March 1996, Vol. I, § 4.2.b.

Spain’s LOAC Manual (2007) states: “Attacks must be strictly limited to military objectives.” 
Spain, Orientaciones. El Derecho de los Conflictos Armados, Tomo 1, Publicación OR7–004, (Edición Segunda), Mando de Adiestramiento y Doctrina, Dirección de Doctrina, Orgánica y Materiales, 2 November 2007, § 4.2.b.

Sweden
Sweden’s IHL Manual (1991) states: “A distinction shall always be made between persons participating in hostilities and who are thereby legitimate objectives, and members of the civilian population, who may not constitute objectives in warfare.” 
Sweden, International Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflict, with reference to the Swedish Total Defence System, Swedish Ministry of Defence, January 1991, Section 3.2.1.5, p. 40.

Switzerland
Switzerland’s Basic Military Manual (1987) states that only military objectives may be attacked, including enemy armed forces. 
Switzerland, Lois et coutumes de la guerre (Extrait et commentaire), Règlement 51.7/II f, Armée Suisse, 1987, Article 28.

Togo
Togo’s Military Manual (1996) states: “A combatant must fight only enemy combatants.” 
Togo, Le Droit de la Guerre, III fascicules, Etat-major Général des Forces Armées Togolaises, Ministère de la Défense nationale, 1996, Fascicule I, p. 18; see also Fascicule II, p. 18.

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The UK Military Manual (1958) states:
The most important powers of resistance possessed by a belligerent … are his armed forces with their military stores and equipment, and his defence installations of all kinds. The means of reducing these powers of resistance [include] killing and disabling enemy combatants. 
United Kingdom, The Law of War on Land being Part III of the Manual of Military Law, The War Office, HMSO, 1958, § 108.

The UK LOAC Manual (2004), as amended in 2010, states:
The principle of distinction separates those who may be legitimately the subject of direct attack, namely combatants and those who take a direct part in hostilities, from those who may not be so subject. 
United Kingdom, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Ministry of Defence, 1 July 2004, as amended by Amendment 3, Ministry of Defence, September 2010, §§ 2.5–2.5.1.

United States of America
The US Rules of Engagement for Operation Desert Storm (1991) sets as a basic rule “fight only combatants”. 
United States, Desert Storm – Rules of Engagement, Pocket Card, US Central Command, January 1991, reprinted in Operational Law Handbook, International and Operational Law Department, The Judge Advocate General’s School, United States Army, Charlottesville, Virginia, 1995, pp. 8-7 and 8-8, § 1.

The US Naval Handbook (1995) states that only attacks against combatants and other military objectives are lawful. 
United States, The Commander’s Handbook on the Law of Naval Operations, NWP 1-14M/MCWP 5-2.1/COMDTPUB P5800.7, issued by the Department of the Navy, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations and Headquarters, US Marine Corps, and Department of Transportation, US Coast Guard, October 1995 (formerly NWP 9 (Rev. A)/FMFM 1-10, October 1989), § 8.1.

The US Naval Handbook (2007) states: “Only military objectives may be attacked. Military objectives are combatants … ”. 
United States, The Commander’s Handbook on the Law of Naval Operations, NWP 1-14M/MCWP 5-12.1/COMDTPUB P5800.7, issued by the Department of the Navy, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations and Headquarters, US Marine Corps, and Department of Homeland Security, US Coast Guard, July 2007, § 8.2.

Yugoslavia, Socialist Federal Republic of
The Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s Military Manual (1988) states:
The armed forces are an instrument of force and [may be] the direct object of attack. It is permitted to kill, wound or disable their members in combat, except where they surrender or when due to wounds or sickness they are disabled for combat. 
Yugoslavia, Socialist Federal Republic, Propisi o Primeri Pravila Medjunarodnog Ratnog Prava u Oruzanim Snagama SFRJ, PrU-2, Savezni Sekretarijat za Narodnu Odbranu (Pravna Uprava), 1988, § 49.

Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe’s Code of Conduct for Combatants (1993) states: “Fight only combatants.”  
Zimbabwe, Code of Conduct for Combatants, Joint publication of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces and the International Committee of the Red Cross Regional Delegation in Harare, 1993, p. 2.

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Ireland
Under Ireland’s Geneva Conventions Act (1962), as amended in 1998, any “minor breach” of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, including violations of Articles 48 and 52(2), is a punishable offence. 
Ireland, Geneva Conventions Act, 1962, as amended in 1998, 1962, Section 4(1) and (4).

Italy
According to Italy’s Law of War Decree (1938), as amended in 1992, armed forces may be attacked. 
Italy, Law of War Decree, 1938, as amended in 1992, 1938, Article 40.

Norway
Norway’s Military Penal Code (1902), as amended in 1981, provides:
Anyone who contravenes or is accessory to the contravention of provisions relating to the protection of persons or property laid down in … the two additional protocols to [the 1949 Geneva] Conventions … is liable to imprisonment. 
Norway, Military Penal Code, 1902, as amended in 1981, 1902, § 108(b).

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Germany
In 2010, in the Fuel Tankers case, the Federal Prosecutor General at Germany’s Federal Court of Justice investigated whether war crimes or other crimes under domestic law had been committed in the course of an airstrike which was ordered by a colonel (Oberst) of the German armed forces against two tankers transporting fuel for the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan stolen by the Taliban near Kunduz and which resulted in the deaths of a number of civilians. The Federal Prosecutor General stated:
Pursuant to § 170 para. 2 StPO [Penal Procedure Code], the investigation proceedings which were initiated by the order of 12 March 2010 against Colonel (Oberst) Klein and Company Sergeant Major (Hauptfeldwebel) Wilhelm due to suspected offences under the VStGB [International Crimes Code] and other offences are to be terminated as a result of the investigations conducted and based on the sources of information set out hereafter and on the reasons given in detail hereafter. 
Germany, Federal Court of Justice, Federal Prosecutor General, Fuel Tankers case, Decision, 16 April 2010, p. 1.

Colonel (Oberst) Klein’s actions were lawful under international law and therefore justified under domestic criminal law [hence not constituting murder] …
In the assessment of the lawfulness of military attacks in non-international armed conflict which result in the killing of persons, the victims’ status under the international law of armed conflict is of particular relevance. One must distinguish whether the victims are armed fighters of the adverse party, civilians directly participating in hostilities, or other civilians. Persons who belong to the first two categories are in principle legitimate targets of military attacks. 
Germany, Federal Court of Justice, Federal Prosecutor General, Fuel Tankers case, Decision, 16 April 2010, p. 59.

Israel
In its judgment in the Public Committee against Torture in Israel case in 2006, Israel’s High Court of Justice stated: “In general, combatants and military objectives are legitimate targets for military attack. Their lives and bodies are endangered by the combat. They can be killed and wounded.” 
Israel, High Court of Justice, Public Committee against Torture in Israel case, Judgment, 14 December 2006, § 23.

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Australia
Upon ratification of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, Australia stated:
It is the understanding of Australia that the first sentence of paragraph 2 of Article 52 is not intended to, nor does it, deal with the question of incidental or collateral damage resulting from an attack directed against a military objective. 
Australia, Declarations made upon ratification of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, 21 June 1991, § 5.

Canada
Upon ratification of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, Canada stated:
It is the understanding of the Government of Canada in relation to Article 52 that … the first sentence of paragraph 2 of the Article is not intended to, nor does it, deal with the question of incidental or collateral damage resulting from an attack directed against a military objective. 
Canada, Reservations and statements of understanding made upon ratification of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, 20 November 1990, § 8(b).

At the CDDH, Canada stated that the first sentence of Article 47(2) of the draft Additional Protocol I (now Article 52(2)) “prohibits only attacks that could be directed against non-military objectives. It does not deal with the result of a legitimate attack on military objectives and incidental damage that such attack may cause.” 
Canada, Statement at the CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.41, 26 May 1977, p. 179.

Djibouti
In 2011, in the History and Geography Textbook for 9th Grade, Djibouti’s Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training, under the heading “Codes and wisdom”, stated: “Kill only those who are armed and only during a conflict.” 
Djibouti, Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training, History and Geography Textbook for 9th Grade, 2011, p. 214.

France
Upon ratification of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, France stated:
The Government of the French Republic considers that the first sentence of paragraph 2 of Article 52 does not deal with the question of collateral damage resulting from attacks directed against military objectives. 
France, Declarations and reservations made upon ratification of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, 11 April 2001, § 12.

Germany, Federal Republic of
At the CDDH, the Federal Republic of Germany stated that the first sentence of Article 47(2) of the draft Additional Protocol I (now Article 52(2))
is a restatement of the basic rule contained in Article 43 [now Article 48], namely that the Parties to a conflict shall direct their operations only against military objectives. It does not deal with the question of collateral damage caused by attacks directed against military objectives. 
Germany, Federal Republic of, Statement at the CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.41, 26 May 1977, p. 188.

Germany
In 2010, in reply to a Minor Interpellation in the Bundestag (Lower House of Parliament) titled “Killing of German nationals by a US drone attack – Intervention of the German judiciary”, Germany’s Federal Government wrote:
15. How does the Federal Government evaluate the legality of acts of targeted killing of persons within the context of international and non-international armed conflicts …?
… [M]embers of the opposing armed forces (combatants) in international armed conflict and, in non-international armed conflict, members of organized armed groups exercising a continuous combat function may be lawfully targeted at all times as enemy fighters under international humanitarian law, including with the use of lethal force. 
Germany, Lower House of Federal Parliament (Bundestag), Reply by the Federal Government to the Minor Interpellation by Members Jerzy Montag, Hans-Christian Ströbele, Omit Nouripour, further Members and the Parliamentary Group BÜNDNIS 90/DIE GRÜNEN, BT-Drs. 17/3916, 23 November 2010, p. 6.

Israel
In 2009, in a report on Israeli operations in Gaza between 27 December 2008 and 18 January 2009 (the “Gaza Operation”, also known as “Operation Cast Lead”), Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that “by definition, the principle of distinction does not forbid the targeting of combatants”. 
Israel, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, The Operation in Gaza 27 December 2008–18 January 2009: Factual and Legal Aspects, 29 July 2009, § 96.
[footnote in original omitted]
In July 2010, in a second update of its July 2009 report on Israeli operations in Gaza between 27 December 2008 and 18 January 2009, Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated: “The principle of distinction is a core element of IDF [Israel Defense Forces] standing orders. All IDF soldiers are instructed that strikes are to be directed only against … combatants”. 
Israel, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Gaza Operation Investigations: Second Update, 19 July 2010, § 58.

In 2010, in a position paper submitted to the Public Commission to Examine the Maritime Incident of 31 May 2010 (Turkel Commission), established by the Israeli government to examine the Gaza flotilla incident, Israel’s Military Advocate General stated:
[T]he law of armed conflict is based, inter alia, upon the fundamental principles of distinction and proportionality. According to the first principle, a person who belongs to the armed forces of the opposing side constitutes a legitimate target for attack, and therefore he can be attacked intentionally and directly, in order to kill him or wound him, and thus take him out of the “cycle of combat.” 
Israel, position paper by the Military Advocate General on investigating allegations of violations of IHL, submitted to the Public Commission to Examine the Maritime Incident of 31 May 2010 (Turkel Commission), 19 December 2010, Part B.

Italy
Upon ratification of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, Italy declared:
The first sentence of paragraph 2 of [Article 52] prohibits only such attacks as may be directed against non-military objectives. Such a sentence does not deal with the question of collateral damage caused by attacks directed against military objectives. 
Italy, Declarations made upon ratification of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, 27 February 1986, § 8.

Jordan
The Report on the Practice of Jordan notes that a booklet on the law of armed conflict prepared by the ICRC is used by military commanders. The booklet gives a list of principles to apply in military action, among which is the obligation of the armed forces to fight only combatants. 
Report on the Practice of Jordan, 1997, Answers to additional questions on Chapter 1.1.

Malaysia
The Report on the Practice of Malaysia states that attacks should only be “directed against combatant targets which shall be distinguished and confirmed”. 
Report on the Practice of Malaysia, 1997, Answers to additional questions on Chapter 1.4.

In 2010, during the consideration of the Status of the 1977 Additional Protocols by the Sixth Committee of the UN General Assembly, a statement of the delegation of Malaysia was summarized by the Committee in its records as follows:
8. [The delegate of Malaysia] said that …

10. … [t]he laws of naval warfare incorporated the fundamental principles of international humanitarian law, including necessity and proportionality …
11. [In the case of the attacks by the Israel Defense Forces on the Mavi Marmara and five accompanying vessels in May 2010] … [n]aval forces were … under an obligation to … limit attacks to military objectives. 
Malaysia, Statement by the delegation of Malaysia before the Sixth Committee of the UN General Assembly on the Status of the Protocols Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and relating to the protection of victims of armed conflict, 18 October 2010, as published in the summary record of the 13th meeting, 8 December 2010, UN Doc. A/C.6/65/SR.13, §§ 8, 10 and 11.

Mexico
At the CDDH, Mexico stated that it believed Article 47 of the draft Additional Protocol I (now Article 52) to be so essential that it “cannot be the subject of any reservations whatsoever since these would be inconsistent with the aim and purpose of Protocol I and undermine its basis”. 
Mexico, Statement at the CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.41, 26 May 1977, p. 193.

Netherlands
At the CDDH, the Netherlands stated that the first sentence of Article 47(2) of the draft Additional Protocol I (now Article 52(2)) “prohibits only such attacks as may be directed against non-military objectives and consequently does not deal with the question of collateral damage caused by attacks directed against military objectives”. 
Netherlands, Statement at the CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.41, 26 May 1977, p. 195.

New Zealand
Upon ratification of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, New Zealand stated:
The first sentence of paragraph 2 of [Article 52] is not intended to, nor does it, deal with the question of incidental or collateral damage resulting from an attack directed against a military objective. 
New Zealand, Declarations made upon ratification of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, 8 February 1988, § 4.

Serbia and Montenegro
In its oral pleadings before the ICJ in the Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide case (Bosnia and Herzegovina v. Serbia and Montenegro) in 2006, Serbia and Montenegro noted:
As for the events in Srebrenica in July 1995, it was never denied before the Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia that the men killed were of military age. However, no one knows and no one has ever sought to determine the number of soldiers in the column which left Srebrenica. No one knows and no one has ever sought to determine how many men were killed in combat. These questions have to be answered before the act can be given legal characterization. The killing of men in combat in wartime is not a criminal act; unfortunately, it is the legitimate aim of the military operation. 
Serbia and Montenegro, Oral pleadings before the ICJ, Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide case (Bosnia and Herzegovina v. Serbia and Montenegro), 4 May 2006, Verbatim Record CR 2006/42, p. 29, § 58.

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Upon ratification of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, the United Kingdom stated:
It is the understanding of the United Kingdom that … the first sentence of paragraph 2 [of Article 52] prohibits only such attacks as may be directed against non-military objectives; it does not deal with the question of collateral damage resulting from attacks directed against military objectives. 
United Kingdom, Reservations and declarations made upon ratification of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, 28 January 1998, § j.

At the CDDH, the United Kingdom stated that it did not interpret the obligation in the first sentence of Article 47(2) of the draft Additional Protocol I (now Article 52(2))
as dealing with the question of incidental damage caused by attacks directed against military objectives. In its view, the purpose of the first sentence of the paragraph was to prohibit only such attacks as might be directed against non-military objectives. 
United Kingdom, Statement at the CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.41, 26 May 1977, p. 169, § 153.

The UK Government Strategy on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict (2010) states: “IHL requires parties to a conflict to respect and protect civilians. In the conduct of military operations they must distinguish at all times between combatants and civilians, and only direct attacks against suspected combatants”. 
United Kingdom, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Government Strategy on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict, March 2010, p. 4.

United States of America
At the CDDH, the United States stated that the first sentence of Article 47(2) of the draft Additional Protocol I (now Article 52(2)) “prohibits only such attacks as may be directed against non-military objectives. It does not deal with the question of collateral damage caused by attacks directed against military objectives.” 
United States, Statement at the CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.41, 26 May 1977, p. 204.

In March 2010, in a speech given at the Annual Meeting of the American Society of International Law, the Legal Adviser of the US State Department stated:
Recently, a number of legal objections have been raised against U.S. targeting practices. …
First, some have suggested that the very act of targeting a particular leader of an enemy force in an armed conflict must violate the laws of war. But individuals who are part of such an armed group are belligerents and, therefore, lawful targets under international law. During World War II, for example, American aviators tracked and shot down the airplane carrying the architect of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, who was also the leader of enemy forces in the Battle of Midway. This was a lawful operation then, and would be if conducted today. Indeed, targeting particular individuals serves to narrow the focus when force is employed and to avoid broader harm to civilians and civilian objects. 
United States, ‘The Obama Administration and International Law’, Speech by the Legal Adviser of the US Department of State, given at the Annual Meeting of the American Society of International Law, Washington DC, 25 March 2010.
[emphasis in original]
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ICRC
To fulfil its task of disseminating IHL, the ICRC has delegates around the world teaching armed and security forces that: “Combatants may be attacked.” 
Frédéric de Mulinen, Handbook on the Law of War for Armed Forces, ICRC, Geneva, 1987, § 210.

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Additional Protocol I
Article 51(2) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I states: “The civilian population as such, as well as individual civilians, shall not be the object of attack.” 
Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts (Protocol I), Geneva, 8 June 1977, Article 51(2). Article 51 was adopted by 77 votes in favour, one against and 16 abstentions. CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.41, 26 May 1977.

Article 85(3)(a) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I states that “making the civilian population or individual civilians the object of attack” is a grave breach of the Protocol. 
Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts (Protocol I), Geneva, 8 June 1977, Article 85(3)(a). Article 85 was adopted by consensus. CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.44, 30 May 1977.

Additional Protocol II
Article 13(2) of the 1977 Additional Protocol II provides: “The civilian population as such, as well as individual civilians, shall not be the object of attack.” 
Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of Non-International Armed Conflicts (Protocol II), Geneva, 8 June 1977, Article 13(2). Article 13 was adopted by consensus. CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VII, CDDH/SR.52, 6 June 1977.

Protocol II to the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons
Article 3(2) of the 1980 Protocol II to the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons provides: “It is prohibited in all circumstances to direct [mines, booby-traps and other devices], either in offence, defence or by way of reprisals, against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians.” 
Protocol on Prohibitions or Restrictions on the Use of Mines, Booby-Traps and Other Devices, to the 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, Article 3(2).

Protocol III to the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons
Article 2(1) of the 1980 Protocol III to the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons states: “It is prohibited in all circumstances to make the civilian population as such [or] individual civilians … the object of attack by incendiary weapons.” 
Protocol on Prohibitions or Restrictions on the Use of Incendiary Weapons, to the 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, Article 2(1).

Amended Protocol II to the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons
Article 3(7) of the 1996 Amended Protocol II to the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons provides: “It is prohibited in all circumstances to direct [mines, booby-traps and other devices], either in offence, defence or by way of reprisals, against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians.” 
Protocol on Prohibitions on the Use of Mines, Booby-Traps and Other Devices, as amended, to the 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, 3 May 1996, Article 3(7).

Israel-Lebanon Ceasefire Understanding
Article 3 of the 1996 Israel-Lebanon Ceasefire Understanding states: “The two parties commit to ensuring that under no circumstances will civilians be the target of attack.” 
Israel-Lebanon Ceasefire Understanding, concluded between the United States of America, Israel and Lebanon, in consultation with Syria, 26 April 1996, also known as the Grapes of Wrath Understanding, Article 3.

ICC Statute
Pursuant to Article 8(2)(b)(i) and (e)(i) of the 1998 ICC Statute, “intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians not taking a direct part in hostilities” constitutes a war crime in both international and non-international armed conflicts. 
Statute of the International Criminal Court, adopted by the UN Diplomatic Conference of Plenipotentiaries on the Establishment of an International Criminal Court, Rome, 17 July 1998, UN Doc. A/CONF.183/9, Article 8(2)(b)(i) and (e)(i).

Statute of the Special Court for Sierra Leone
Article 4(a) of the 2002 Statute of the Special Court for Sierra Leone provides:
The Special Court shall have the power to prosecute persons who committed the following serious violations of international humanitarian law:
(a) Intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities. 
Statute of the Special Court for Sierra Leone, annexed to the 2002 Agreement on the Special Court for Sierra Leone, Freetown, 16 January 2002, annexed to Letter dated 6 March 2002 from the UN Secretary-General to the President of the UN Security Council, UN Doc. S/2002/246, 8 March 2002, p. 29, Article 4(a).

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Lieber Code
Article 22 of the 1863 Lieber Code provides: “The principle has been more and more acknowledged that the unarmed citizen is to be spared in person, property, and honor as much as the exigencies of war will admit.” 
Instructions for the Government of Armies of the United States in the Field, prepared by Francis Lieber, promulgated as General Order No. 100 by President Abraham Lincoln, Washington D.C., 24 April 1863, Article 22.

ILA Draft Convention for the Protection of Civilian Populations against New Engines of War
Article 1 of the 1938 ILA Draft Convention for the Protection of Civilian Populations against New Engines of War provides: “The civilian population of a State shall not form the object of an act of war.” 
Draft Convention for the Protection of Civilian Populations against New Engines of War, adopted by the International Law Association, Fortieth Conference, Amsterdam, 29 August–2 September 1938, Article 1.

New Delhi Draft Rules
Article 6 of the 1956 New Delhi Draft Rules provides:
Attacks directed against the civilian population, as such, whether with the object of terrorizing it or for any other reason, are prohibited. This prohibition applies both to attacks on individuals and to those directed against groups. 
Draft Rules for the Limitation of the Dangers Incurred by the Civilian Population in Time of War, drafted by the International Committee of the Red Cross, September 1956, submitted to governments for their consideration on behalf of the 19th International Conference of the Red Cross, New Delhi, 28 October–7 November, Res. XIII, Article 6.

Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam
Article 3(a) of the 1990 Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam provides: “In the event of the use of force and in case of armed conflict, it is not permissible to kill non-belligerents such as old men, women and children.” 
Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam, adopted at the 19th Session of the Islamic Conference of Foreign Ministers, Res. 49/19-P, Cairo, 5 August 1990, annexed to Letter dated 19 September 1990 from the Permanent Representative of Egypt to the UN addressed to the UN Secretary-General, UN Doc. A/45/421-S/21797, 20 September 1990, Article 3(a).

Hague Statement on Respect for Humanitarian Principles
In the 1991 Hague Statement on Respect for Humanitarian Principles, the Presidents of the six republics of the former Yugoslavia accepted to apply the fundamental principle that “the civilian population … must not be attacked”. 
Statement on Respect for Humanitarian Principles, signed by the Presidents of the Six Republics of the former Yugoslavia, The Hague, 5 November 1991.

Memorandum of Understanding on the Application of IHL between Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
Paragraph 6 of the 1991 Memorandum of Understanding on the Application of IHL between Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia requires that hostilities be conducted in accordance with Article 51(2) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I. 
Memorandum of Understanding on the Application of International Humanitarian Law between Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Geneva, 27 November 1991, § 6.

Agreement on the Application of IHL between the Parties to the Conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Paragraph 2.5 of the 1992 Agreement on the Application of IHL between the Parties to the Conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina requires that hostilities be conducted in accordance with Article 51(2) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I. 
Agreement between Representatives of Mr. Alija Izetbegović (President of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina and President of the Party of Democratic Action), Representatives of Mr. Radovan Karadžić (President of the Serbian Democratic Party), and Representative of Mr. Miljenko Brkić (President of the Croatian Democratic Community), Geneva, 22 May 1992, § 2.5.

Franco-German Declaration on the War in Bosnia and Herzegovina
The 1993 Franco-German Declaration on the War in Bosnia and Herzegovina condemned “the bombardment of the Muslim population” in Goražde and Mostar. 
Franco-German Declaration on the War in Bosnia and Herzegovina, 61st French-German Consultations, Beaune, 2 June 1993.

ILC Draft Code of Crimes against the Peace and Security of Mankind (1996)
Pursuant to Article 20(b)(i) of the 1996 ILC Draft Code of Crimes against the Peace and Security of Mankind, “making the civilian population or individual civilians the object of attack” is a war crime. 
Draft Code of Crimes against the Peace and Security of Mankind, adopted by the International Law Commission, reprinted in Report of the International Law Commission on the work of its forty-eighth session, 6 May–26 July 1996, UN Doc. A/51/10, 1996, Article 20(b)(i).

UN Secretary-General’s Bulletin
Section 5.1 of the 1999 UN Secretary-General’s Bulletin states: “Attacks on civilians … are prohibited.” 
Observance by United Nations Forces of International Humanitarian Law, Secretary-General’s Bulletin, UN Secretariat, UN Doc. ST/SGB/1999/13, 6 August 1999, Section 5.1.

UNTAET Regulation No. 2000/15
UNTAET Regulation No. 2000/15 establishes panels with exclusive jurisdiction over serious criminal offences, including war crimes. According to Section 6(1)(b)(i) and (e)(i) of the Regulation, “[i]ntentionally directing attacks against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians not taking a direct part in hostilities” constitutes a war crime in both international and non-international armed conflicts. 
Regulation on the Establishment of Panels with Exclusive Jurisdiction over Serious Criminal Offences, UN Doc. UNTAET/REG/2000/15, Dili, 6 June 2000, Section 6(1)(b)(i) and (e)(i).

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Argentina
Argentina’s Law of War Manual (1989) states: “The prohibition to attack civilians and civilian objects implies that any act of violence, whether in offence or defence, against them is prohibited”. 
Argentina, Leyes de Guerra, PC-08-01, Público, Edición 1989, Estado Mayor Conjunto de las Fuerzas Armadas, aprobado por Resolución No. 489/89 del Ministerio de Defensa, 23 April 1990, § 4.03.

Australia
According to Australia’s Commanders’ Guide (1994), “making the civilian population or individual civilians the object of attack” is an example of acts which constitute “grave breaches or serious war crimes likely to warrant institution of criminal proceedings”. 
Australia, Law of Armed Conflict, Commanders’ Guide, Australian Defence Force Publication, Operations Series, ADFP 37 Supplement 1 – Interim Edition, 7 March 1994, § 1305(g).

Australia’s Defence Force Manual (1994) states: “Attacks directed against the civilian population or civilian objects are prohibited.” 
Australia, Manual on Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Force Publication, Operations Series, ADFP 37 – Interim Edition, 1994, § 503; see also Law of Armed Conflict, Commanders’ Guide, Australian Defence Force Publication, Operations Series, ADFP 37 Supplement 1 – Interim Edition, 7 March 1994, § 405.

Australia’s LOAC Manual (2006) states:
Targeting principles
5.3 Targeting is premised on the basic principles set out in chapter 2.– “Principles of the law of armed conflict”. These principles lead to the following rules:

• attacks directed against the civilian population or civilian objects are prohibited; and
• distinction must be drawn between combatants and non-combatants, with every effort being made to avoid involving non-combatants in the conflict.

Non-combatants
5.18 Non-combatants may not be attacked, although the LOAC recognises that, in certain circumstances, unavoidable non-combatant casualties may occur during operations.

5.21 Civilians. Civilians must be protected from the dangers of military operations. They must not be the object of attack …
5.22 Refugees and displaced persons … Refugees and displaced persons are civilians and as such are protected persons and must be afforded corresponding protection.

Protection of civilians and civilian objects
5.35 There is a fundamental rule that parties to a conflict must direct their operations only against military objectives. G. P. I [1977 Additional Protocol I] expressly provides that the civilian population and civilian objects are to be protected against attack.  
Australia, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Doctrine Publication 06.4, Australian Defence Headquarters, 11 May 2006, §§ 5.3, 5.18, 5.21–5.22 and 5.35; see also §§ 2.8, 2.11, 4.30, 9.17 and 9.18

[The 1977 Additional Protocol I] extends the definition of grave breaches to include the following … acts when committed wilfully, in violation of the relevant provisions of the protocol, and causing death or serious injury to body or health:
• making the civilian population or individual civilians the object of attack. 
Australia, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Doctrine Publication 06.4, Australian Defence Headquarters, 11 May 2006, § 13.26.

Belgium
Belgium’s Teaching Manual for Soldiers states that civilians must not be attacked. 
Belgium, Droit de la Guerre, Dossier d’Instruction pour Soldat, à l’attention des officiers instructeurs, JS3, Etat-Major Général, Forces Armées belges, undated, p. 7; see also pp. 10, 14 and 41.

Benin
Benin’s Military Manual (1995) states that the prohibition on attacking the civilian population, individual civilians and civilian property as a method of combat must be respected. 
Benin, Le Droit de la Guerre, III fascicules, Forces Armées du Bénin, Ministère de la Défense nationale, 1995, Fascicule III, p. 12.

Burundi
Burundi’s Regulations on International Humanitarian Law (2007) states: “Civilians … must be protected: it is prohibited to attack them.” 
Burundi, Règlement n° 98 sur le droit international humanitaire, Ministère de la Défense Nationale et des Anciens Combattants, Projet “Moralisation” (BDI/B-05), August 2007, Part I bis, p. 9; see also Part I bis, pp. 33, 34, 80 and 82.

Cameroon
Cameroon’s Instructor’s Manual (1992) requires that the civilian population be protected and respected during military operations. 
Cameroon, Droit international humanitaire et droit de la guerre, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les Forces Armées, Présidence de la République, Ministère de la Défense, Etat-major des Armées, Troisième Division, Edition 1992, pp. 150–151.

Cameroon’s Instructor’s Manual (2006), under the heading “Civilian Victims of Armed Conflicts”, stipulates that “[the civilian] population must be protected”. 
Cameroon, Droit des conflits armés et droit international humanitaire, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les forces de défense, Ministère de la Défense, Présidence de la République, Etat-major des Armées, 2006, p. 60, § 252; see also p. 86, § 342.

Canada
Canada’s LOAC Manual (1999) states: “As a general rule, civilians … shall not be attacked.” 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Level, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 1999, p. 4-4, § 32; see also p. 7-5, § 46 (air to land operations).

Canada’s Code of Conduct (2001) states:
Force used during operations must be directed against opposing forces and military objectives. Therefore, civilians not taking part in hostilities must not be targeted. [This rule] not only makes sense morally but also helps to ensure the most efficient use of military resources. In simple terms, “warriors fight warriors” … An “opposing force” is any individual or group of individuals who pose a threat to you or your mission … In an armed conflict, on the other hand, the enemy forces are opposing forces whether or not they pose an immediate threat. 
Canada, Code of Conduct for CF Personnel, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 4 June 2001, Rule 1, §§ 3 and 5.

Canada’s LOAC Manual (2001) states that the concept of humanity “confirms the basic immunity of civilian populations and civilians from being objects of attack during armed conflict”. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 202.6.

In its chapter on targeting, the manual also states: “As a general rule, civilians and civilian objects shall not be attacked.” 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 423.

Rule 1 of Canada’s Code of Conduct (2005) instructs CF personnel: “Engage only opposing forces and military objectives.” 
Canada, Code of Conduct for CF Personnel, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 2005, Rule 1.

Force used during operations must be directed against opposing forces and military objectives. Therefore, civilians not taking part in hostilities must not be targeted. Rule #1 not only makes sense morally but also helps to ensure the most efficient use of military resources. In simple terms, “warriors fight warriors.” 
Canada, Code of Conduct for CF Personnel, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 2005, Rule 1, § 3.

Central African Republic
The Central African Republic’s Instructor’s Manual (1999) states in Volume 2 (Instruction for group and patrol leaders): “Neither the civilian population as a whole nor civilians may be the object of attacks.” 
Central African Republic, Le Droit de la Guerre, Fascicule No. 2: Formation pour l’obtention du certificat technique No. 2 (Chef de Groupe), du certificat Inter-Armé (CIA), du certificat d’aptitude de Chef de Patrouille (CACP), Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Centrafricaines, 1999, Chapter I, Fundamental Rules, § 7; see also Le Droit de la Guerre, Fascicule No. 1: Formation élémentaire toutes armés (FETA), formation commune de base (FCB), certificat d’aptitude technique No. 1 (Chef d’équipe), Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Centrafricaines, 1999, Chapter I, Section V, § 2 and Chapter III, Section IV.

Chad
Chad’s Instructor’s Manual (2006) states that “attacking civilians (except if they are participating directly in the fighting and for the duration of that participation)” is prohibited. 
Chad, Droit international humanitaire, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les forces armées et de sécurité, Ministère de la Défense, Présidence de la République, Etat-major des Armées, 2006, p. 78; see also pp. 16, 36, 87 and 93.

Colombia
Colombia’s Circular on Fundamental Rules of IHL (1992) states: “Neither the civilian population as such nor individual civilians may be made the object of attack.” 
Colombia, Transcripción Normas Fundamentales del Derecho Humanitario Aplicables en los Conflictos Armados, Circular No. 033/DIPL-SERPO-526, Policía Nacional, Dirección General, Santafé de Bogotá, 14 May 1992, § 7.

Colombia’s Basic Military Manual (1995) provides: “The civilian population is not a military objective.” 
Colombia, Derecho Internacional Humanitario – Manual Básico para las Personerías y las Fuerzas Armadas de Colombia, Ministerio de Defensa Nacional, 1995, p. 49; see also Derechos Humanos & Derecho Internacional Humanitario – Manual de Instrucción de la Guía de Conducta para el Soldado e Infante de Marina, Ministerio de Defensa Nacional, Oficina de Derechos Humanos, Fuerzas Militares de Colombia, Santafé de Bogotá, 1999, pp. 15–16.

Côte d’Ivoire
Côte d’Ivoire’s Teaching Manual (2007) provides in Book I (Basic instruction):
Lesson 1. Basic notions of IHL

The principle of distinction specifies who and what can be attacked and who and what cannot be attacked.

- Who and what cannot be attacked?
- Non-combatants,
- Civilians,
- Civilian population, …

Lesson 4. Breaches and repression of violations of IHL

I. Grave violations

They are enumerated by the Geneva Conventions and the Additional Protocols, as well as by the Ivorian Penal Code.
They are:

- … attacks directed against the civilian population. 
Côte d’Ivoire, Droit de la guerre, Manuel d’instruction, Livre I: Instruction de base, Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Nationales, November 2007, pp. 14–15 and 29.

Croatia
According to Croatia’s LOAC Compendium (1991), “attacks on the civilian population” constitute grave breaches and thus war crimes. 
Croatia, Compendium “Law of Armed Conflicts”, Republic of Croatia, Ministry of Defence, 1991, p. 56.

Croatia’s Commanders’ Manual (1992) and Instructions on Basic Rules of IHL (1993) emphasize that attacks on civilians and civilian objects are prohibited. 
Croatia, Basic Rules of the Law of Armed Conflicts – Commanders’ Manual, Republic of Croatia, Ministry of Defence, 1992, § 10; Instructions “Basic Rules of International Humanitarian Law Applicable in Armed Conflicts”, Republic of Croatia, Ministry of Defence, 1993, § 7.

Djibouti
Djibouti’s Manual on International Humanitarian Law (2004) states: “Civilians: Respect them.” 
Djibouti, Manuel sur le droit international humanitaire et les droits de l’homme applicables au travail du policier, Ministère de l’Intérieur, Direction Générale de la Police, 2004, p. 7.

Dominican Republic
The Dominican Republic’s Military Manual (1980) states that non-combatants (a term defined as including civilians) must not be attacked. 
Dominican Republic, La Conducta en Combate según las Leyes de la Guerra, Escuela Superior de las FF. AA. “General de Brigada Pablo Duarte”, Secretaría de Estado de las Fuerzas Armadas, May 1980, p. 3.

Ecuador
Ecuador’s Naval Manual (1989) states: “Civilians and civilian objects may not be made the object of attack.” 
Ecuador, Aspectos Importantes del Derecho Internacional Marítimo que Deben Tener Presente los Comandantes de los Buques, Academia de Guerra Naval, 1989, § 8.1.2; see also §§ 11.2 and 11.3.

El Salvador
El Salvador’s Soldier’s Manual states: “Your honour as a combatant requires that you never attack nor mistreat women, children, the elderly and any person who does not bear arms.”  
El Salvador, Manual del Combatiente, undated, p. 3.

Ethiopia
According to Ethiopia’s Standing Rules of Engagement (2007), civilians do not constitute military objectives. 
Ethiopia, Standing Rules of Engagement, National Defense Force, Addis Ababa, 2007, § 8.4.1.

France
France’s LOAC Summary Note (1992) states: “Civilians may not be attacked.” 
France, Fiche de Synthèse sur les Règles Applicables dans les Conflits Armés, Note No. 432/DEF/EMA/OL.2/NP, Général de Corps d’Armée Voinot (pour l’Amiral Lanxade, Chef d’Etat-major des Armées), 1992, § 1.3; see also Fiche didactique relative au droit des conflits armés, Directive of the Ministry of Defence, 4 January 2000, annexed to the Directive No. 147 of the Ministry of Defence of 4 January 2000, p. 4.

Germany
Germany’s Military Manual (1992) states: “The prohibition of indiscriminate warfare implies that the civilian population as such as well as individual civilians shall not be the object of attack and that they shall be spared as far as possible.” 
Germany, Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflicts – Manual, DSK VV207320067, edited by the Federal Ministry of Defence of the Federal Republic of Germany, VR II 3, August 1992, English translation of ZDv 15/2, Humanitäres Völkerrecht in bewaffneten Konflikten – Handbuch, August 1992, § 404; see also § 429.

Germany’s IHL Manual (1996) states: “Pursuant to Article 85(3) of Additional Protocol I, attacks against the civilian population constitute serious violations of international law and therefore war crimes.” 
Germany, ZDv 15/1, Humanitäres Völkerrecht in bewaffneten Konflikten – Grundsätze, DSK VV230120023, Bundesministerium der Verteidigung, June 1996, § 404; see also Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflicts – Manual, DSK VV207320067, edited by The Federal Ministry of Defence of the Federal Republic of Germany, VR II 3, August 1992, English translation of ZDv 15/2, Humanitäres Völkerrecht in bewaffneten Konflikten – Handbuch, August 1992, § 1209.

Germany’s Soldiers’ Manual (2006) states:
Combat operations may only be directed against the armed forces of the enemy and other military objectives, not however against the civilian population or civilian objects …

Civilians who do not take part in combat operations shall be respected and protected. They may neither be attacked nor killed, wounded or captured. 
Germany, Druckschrift Einsatz Nr. 03, Humanitäres Völkerrecht in bewaffneten Konflikten – Grundsätze, Erarbeitet nach ZDv 15/2, Humanitäres Völkerrecht in bewaffneten Konflikten – Handbuch, DSK SF009320187, Bundesministerium der Verteidigung, R II 3, August 2006, pp. 3–4.

Greece
The Hellenic Navy’s International Law Manual (1995) states in its chapter on submarine warfare:
The aforementioned practice followed during the two World Wars by no means should be considered as sanctioning the exception of naval warfare from the rules of armed conflict. On the contrary, the fundamental principles of IHL treaties concerning the protection and respect of … civilians must be considered applicable. 
Greece, International Law Manual, Hellenic Navy General Staff, Directorate A2, Division IV, 1995, Chapter 7, Part III, § 4.

Guinea
Guinea’s Soldier’s Manual (2010) states: “Spare civilian persons.” 
Guinea, Soldier’s Manual, Ministry of National Defence, 2010, p. 3.

Hungary
According to Hungary’s Military Manual (1992), “attacks on the civilian population” constitute grave breaches and thus war crimes. 
Hungary, A Hadijog, Jegyzet a Katonai, Föiskolák Hallgatói Részére, Magyar Honvédség Szolnoki Repülötiszti Föiskola, 1992, p. 90.

Indonesia
Indonesia’s Military Manual (1982) considers that attacks on civilians are prohibited. 
Indonesia, The Basics of International Humanitarian Law, Legal Division of the Indonesian Armed Forces, 1982, § 109.

Ireland
Ireland’s Basic LOAC Guide (2005) states: “Prohibited targets include civilians not taking part in hostilities”. 
Ireland, Basic Guide to the Law of Armed Conflict, TP/TRG/01-2005, Director of Defence Forces Training, Department of Defence, July 2005, p. 4.

[P]eaceful “enemy” civilians may in no way be attacked or molested. They are, however, subject to the risks of war and if they are accidentally wounded or killed as a result of legitimate military operations, no guilt attaches to the soldiers concerned. 
Ireland, Basic Guide to the Law of Armed Conflict, TP/TRG/01-2005, Director of Defence Forces Training, Department of Defence, July 2005, p. 10.

Israel
With reference to Israel’s Law of War Booklet (1986), the Report on the Practice of Israel states: “The IDF [Israel Defense Forces] is extremely conscious of the necessity to differentiate between civilians and legitimate targets. Attacks on civilians are strictly prohibited.” 
Report on the Practice of Israel, 1997, Chapter 1.3, referring to Conduct in the Battlefield in Accordance with the Law of War, Israel Defence Forces, 1986, Chapter 1.

Israel’s Manual on the Laws of War (1998) states that the principle of distinction “clearly imposes the obligation to refrain from harming civilians insofar as possible”. 
Israel, Laws of War in the Battlefield, Manual, Military Advocate General Headquarters, Military School, 1998, p. 42.

Israel’s Manual on the Rules of Warfare (2006) states: “[A]ttacking civilians … will merely cause unnecessary suffering, and such actions are morally tainted on humanitarian grounds.” 
Israel, Rules of Warfare on the Battlefield, Military Advocate-General’s Corps Command, IDF School of Military Law, Second Edition, 2006, p. 8.

Italy
Italy’s IHL Manual (1991) states that “bombardment, the sole purpose of which is to attack the civilian population,” is prohibited. 
Italy, Manuale di diritto umanitario, Introduzione e Volume I, Usi e convenzioni di Guerra, SMD-G-014, Stato Maggiore della Difesa, I Reparto, Ufficio Addestramento e Regolamenti, Rome, 1991, Vol. I, § 13.

Italy’s LOAC Elementary Rules Manual (1991) states: “Civilians may not be attacked, unless they participate directly in hostilities.” 
Italy, Regole elementari di diritto di guerra, SMD-G-012, Stato Maggiore della Difesa, I Reparto, Ufficio Addestramento e Regolamenti, Rome, 1991, § 10.

Kenya
Kenya’s LOAC Manual (1997) states: “Civilians are protected from attack under the law of armed conflict. They lose their protection when they take a direct part in hostilities.” 
Kenya, Law of Armed Conflict, Military Basic Course (ORS), 4 Précis, The School of Military Police, 1997, Précis No. 1, p. 10.

Madagascar
Madagascar’s Military Manual (1994) states: “Civilian persons may not be attacked, unless they participate directly in hostilities.” 
Madagascar, Le Droit des Conflits Armés, Ministère des Forces Armées, August 1994, Fiche No. 3-O, § 10.

Mexico
Mexico’s Army and Air Force Manual (2009), in a section titled “Basic rules of international humanitarian law applicable in armed conflicts”, states: “It is prohibited to make the civilian population as such or civilian persons the object of attack.” 
Mexico, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para el Ejército y la Fuerza Área Mexicanos, Ministry of National Defence, June 2009, § 412.

Mexico’s IHL Guidelines (2009), in a section titled “Basic rules of conduct in armed conflict”, states that “civilians … must not be attacked”. 
Mexico, Cartilla de Derecho Internacional Humanitario, Ministry of National Defence, 2009, § 14(f).

Netherlands
The Military Manual (1993) of the Netherlands states: “Neither the civilian population, nor individual civilians may be made the target of an attack.” 
Netherlands, Toepassing Humanitair Oorlogsrecht, Voorschift No. 27-412/1, Koninklijke Landmacht, Ministerie van Defensie, 1993, p. IV-1.

The Military Handbook (1995) of the Netherlands states: “it is prohibited to attack civilians”. 
Netherlands, Handboek Militair, Ministerie van Defensie, 1995, p. 7–36.

The Military Manual (2005) of the Netherlands states: “The belligerents must leave those who are outside the armed conflict out of reach of military operations, and refrain from deliberately attacking them.” 
Netherlands, Humanitair Oorlogsrecht: Handleiding, Voorschift No. 27-412, Koninklijke Landmacht, Militair Juridische Dienst, 2005, § 0225.

The prohibition on targeting the civilian population or individual civilians for attack has been construed and implemented in various ways. During the first Gulf War between Iraq and Iran (1980–88), the principle of not attacking the civilian population was repeatedly violated. The fact that neither country had ratified AP I [1977 Additional Protocol I], is less important here, since it is a rule of customary law. Neither the civilian population nor individual civilians may be attacked. 
Netherlands, Humanitair Oorlogsrecht: Handleiding, Voorschift No. 27-412, Koninklijke Landmacht, Militair Juridische Dienst, 2005, § 0513.

New Zealand
New Zealand’s Military Manual (1992) states: “The civilian population as such, as well as individual civilians, shall not be the object of attack.” 
New Zealand, Interim Law of Armed Conflict Manual, DM 112, New Zealand Defence Force, Headquarters, Directorate of Legal Services, Wellington, November 1992, § 517(1).

As in international armed conflict, the civilian population and civilians are to be protected against the dangers arising from the conflict. Neither the civilian population nor individual civilians may be made the object of attack.  
New Zealand, Interim Law of Armed Conflict Manual, DM 112, New Zealand Defence Force, Headquarters, Directorate of Legal Services, Wellington, November 1992, § 1819.

Nigeria
Nigeria’s Military Manual (1994) and Soldiers’ Code of Conduct state: “Civilian persons and objects must be spared.” 
Nigeria, International Humanitarian Law (IHL), Directorate of Legal Services, Nigerian Army, 1994, p. 39, § 5(c); Code of Conduct for Combatants, “The Soldier’s Rules”, Nigerian Army, undated, § 3.

Peru
Peru’s IHL Manual (2004) states: “Protected persons are those who do not, or no longer, take a direct part in the hostilities and must not be attacked. They include the … [c]ivilian population.” 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial Nº 1394-2004-DE/CCFFAA/CDIH-FFAA, Lima, 1 December 2004, § 33.a.(1); see also § 17.

Peru’s IHL and Human Rights Manual (2010) states: “Attacks against civilians are prohibited.” 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario y Derechos Humanos para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial No. 049-2010/DE/VPD, Lima, 21 May 2010, § 18, p. 224.

Protected persons: The following are persons protected by international law:

c. Civilians who, because of a conflict or an occupation, find themselves in the power of a Party of which they are not nationals. Moreover, civilians are protected from the dangers arising from military operations. 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario y Derechos Humanos para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial No. 049-2010/DE/VPD, Lima, 21 May 2010, § c, p. 411.

Philippines
The Joint Circular on Adherence to IHL and Human Rights (1991) of the Philippines states:
When the use of armed force is inevitable, strict controls must be exercised to insure that only reasonable force necessary for mission accomplishment shall be taken and shall be directed only against hostile elements, not against civilians or non-combatants. 
Philippines, Implementation Guidelines for Presidential Memorandum Order No. 393, dated 9 September 1991, Directing the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippines National Police to Reaffirm their Adherence to the Principles of Humanitarian Law and Human Rights in the Conduct of Security/Police Operations, Joint Circular Number 2-91, Department of National Defense, Department of Interior and Local Government, 1991, § (2)(a)(2).

The Air Power Manual (2000) of the Philippine Air Force provides:
6-3. Centers of Gravity
Centers of Gravity are the keys to targeting. A center of gravity is that point where the enemy is most vulnerable which, if successfully attacked, is most likely to bring about his defeat. If there are numerous centers of gravity, they may all have to be successfully attacked for the objective to be achieved. Correctly identifying centers of gravity in relation either to the overall strategic objective or to the immediate tactical objective (depending on the state of the conflict) and then determining how best to attack them is crucial to the air campaign plan.

6-4.4. Centers of gravity are both strengths and weaknesses. An analysis of Warden’s generic strategic centers of gravity indicates that they can be represented by five concentric rings. Starting at the innermost and most important ring and working outwards, those centers are:
a. national leadership,
b. key production,
c. infrastructure,
d. national will, and
e. fielded military forces.

6-5.1. One model proposed to aid target selection is that put forward by Colonel John Warden, USAF. Warden proposes a model, comprising five concentric rings representing the enemy’s centers of gravity, with the inner ring representing the most important center of gravity. According to this model, when attack of the enemy command is not feasible, it is possible to render the enemy impotent by destroying one or more of the outer strategic rings or centers of gravity. Importantly, Warden stresses that
“all actions are aimed at the mind of the enemy command. Thus, one does not conduct an attack against industry or infrastructure because of the effect it might or might not have on fielded forces. Rather, one undertakes such an attack for its effect on national leaders and commanders who must assess the cost of rebuilding the effects on the state’s economic position on the post war, the internal political effect on their own survival, and on the cost versus the potential gain from continuing the war.”
6-5.2. The fourth ring in Warden’s model may appear to condone the targeting of non-combatant civilian population which is contrary to the law of armed conflict (LOAC). To eliminate any possibility of misconception, it should be stressed that targeting does not automatically infer the use of lethal weapons. Non-lethal weapons such as psychological operations may legitimately be used to target the enemy population. The use of leaflet drops and media broadcasts are well known methods of targeting civilian population. Other methods have also been used to disrupt the orderly function of enemy society through the conversion of key personnel to one’s own cause and the incitement of parts of the enemy society to rebel against their leadership. These are non-destructive means of targeting the enemy population. Hence, the fourth ring in Warden’s model is a legitimate center of gravity that should not be ignored. 
Philippines, Air Power Manual, Philippine Air Force, Headquarters, Office of Special Studies, May 2000, §§ 6-3, 6-4.4. and 6-5.1.–6-5.2.

Republic of Korea
The Republic of Korea’s Military Regulation 187 (1991) provides that “killing non-combatants” is a war crime. 
Republic of Korea, Military Regulation 187, 1 January 1991, Article 4.2.

The Republic of Korea’s Military Law Manual (1996) states that direct attacks against civilians are contrary to international law. 
Republic of Korea, Military Law Manual, 1996, p. 88.

Russian Federation
The Russian Federation’s Military Manual (1990) states that it is prohibited “to launch attacks against the civilian population or against individual civilians”. 
Russian Federation, Instructions on the Application of the Rules of International Humanitarian Law by the Armed Forces of the USSR, Appendix to Order of the USSR Defence Minister No. 75, 1990, § 8(f).

The Russian Federation’s Regulations on the Application of IHL (2001) states: “The civilian population as such and individual civilians enjoy protection which, in addition to other international humanitarian law rules, prohibits making them an object of attack.” 
Russian Federation, Regulations on the Application of International Humanitarian Law by the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation, Moscow, 8 August 2001, § 54; see also § 7 (prohibited methods of warfare).

Sierra Leone
Sierra Leone’s Instructor Manual (2007) provides: “[A]ll combat activity must be justified on military grounds, attacks which are not justified or militarily necessary are prohibited. Attacking civilians … is prohibited because no military advantage is gained by doing so.” 
Sierra Leone, The Law of Armed Conflict. Instructor Manual for the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF), Armed Forces Education Centre, September 2007, pp. 20–21.

South Africa
South Africa’s LOAC Manual (1996) states: “The general rule is that civilians and civilian property may not be the subject, or the sole object, of a military attack.” The manual adds that “making the civilian population or individual civilians the object of attack” constitutes a grave breach. 
South Africa, Presentation on the South African Approach to International Humanitarian Law, Appendix A, Chapter 4: International Humanitarian Law (The Law of Armed Conflict), National Defence Force, 1996, §§ 28(a) and 37(a).

South Africa’s Revised Civic Education Manual (2004) states: “The general rule is that civilians … may not be the subject, or the sole object, of a military attack.” 
South Africa, Revised Civic Education Manual, South African National Defence Force, 2004, Chapter 4, § 50(a).

Spain
Spain’s LOAC Manual (1996) prohibits military operations directed against civilians. 
Spain, Orientaciones. El Derecho de los Conflictos Armados, Publicación OR7-004, 2 Tomos, aprobado por el Estado Mayor del Ejército, Division de Operaciones, 18 March 1996, Vol. I, § 4.5.b.(1); see also § 5.2.a.(2).

Spain’s LOAC Manual (2007) states: “The civilian population may not be the direct, intentional object of attack, as long as they do not take a direct part in hostilities.” 
Spain, Orientaciones. El Derecho de los Conflictos Armados, Tomo 1, Publicación OR7–004, (Edición Segunda), Mando de Adiestramiento y Doctrina, Dirección de Doctrina, Orgánica y Materiales, 2 November 2007, § 1.3.a.(2); see also §§ 4.5.b.(1).(b), 5.2.a.(2) and 7.3.a.(1).

Sweden
Sweden’s IHL Manual (1991) states: “A distinction shall always be made between persons participating in hostilities and who are thereby legitimate objectives, and members of the civilian population, who may not constitute objectives in warfare.” 
Sweden, International Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflict, with reference to the Swedish Total Defence System, Swedish Ministry of Defence, January 1991, Section 3.2.1.5, p. 40.

Switzerland
Switzerland’s Basic Military Manual (1987) considers: “The [civilian] population as well as individual civilians must not be attacked”. 
Switzerland, Lois et coutumes de la guerre (Extrait et commentaire), Règlement 51.7/II f, Armée Suisse, 1987, Article 25(2); see also Article 27(1).

Togo
Togo’s Military Manual (1996) requires that the prohibition of attacks on the civilian population, individual civilians and civilian property as a deliberate method of combat be respected. 
Togo, Le Droit de la Guerre, III fascicules, Etat-major Général des Forces Armées Togolaises, Ministère de la Défense nationale, 1996, Fascicule III, p. 12.

Ukraine
Ukraine’s IHL Manual (2004) states:
1.3.2. The following methods of warfare shall be prohibited:

- killing or wounding of civilians.

1.4.10. All parties to an internal armed conflict shall provide protection to:

- persons taking no active part in the hostilities


1.4.16. [In non-international armed conflicts] [c]ivilian population and civilian persons shall not be attacked as long as they do not participate directly in the armed conflict.

2.3.5.1. During combat in an urban environment … [s]pecial attention shall be paid to the prevention of targeting [of the] civilian population and indiscriminate attacks. 
Ukraine, Manual on the Application of IHL Rules, Ministry of Defence, 11 September 2004, §§ 1.3.2, 1.4.10, 1.4.16 and 2.3.5.1.

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The UK Military Manual (1958) states: “It is a generally recognised rule of international law that civilians must not be made the object of attack directed exclusively against them.” 
United Kingdom, The Law of War on Land being Part III of the Manual of Military Law, The War Office, HMSO, 1958, §§ 13 and 88.

The UK LOAC Pamphlet (1981) states: “Civilians are protected from attack under the law of armed conflict.” 
United Kingdom, The Law of Armed Conflict, D/DAT/13/35/66, Army Code 71130 (Revised 1981), Ministry of Defence, prepared under the Direction of The Chief of the General Staff, 1981, Section 3, p. 10, § 9; see also Section 4, p. 14, § 5(a).

The UK LOAC Manual (2004) states: “The civilian population as such, as well as individual civilians, shall not be the object of attack.” 
United Kingdom, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Ministry of Defence, 1 July 2004, § 5.20; see also § 15.49 (internal armed conflict).

United States of America
The US Air Force Pamphlet (1976) states that the “civilian population as such, as well as individual civilians, shall not be made the object of attack”. 
United States, Air Force Pamphlet 110-31, International Law – The Conduct of Armed Conflict and Air Operations, US Department of the Air Force, 1976, § 5-3(a)(1)(a).

The US Naval Handbook (1995) states: “Civilians and civilian objects may not be made the object of attack.” 
United States, The Commander’s Handbook on the Law of Naval Operations, NWP 1-14M/MCWP 5-2.1/COMDTPUB P5800.7, issued by the Department of the Navy, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations and Headquarters, US Marine Corps, and Department of Transportation, US Coast Guard, October 1995 (formerly NWP 9 (Rev. A)/FMFM 1-10, October 1989), § 8.1.2; see also §§ 11.2 and 11.3.

The US Manual for Military Commissions (2007), Part IV, Crimes and Elements, includes in the list of crimes triable by military commissions:
ATTACKING CIVILIANS.
a. Text. “Any person subject to this chapter who intentionally engages in an attack upon a civilian population as such, or individual civilians not taking active part in hostilities, shall be punished, if death results to one or more of the victims, by death or such other punishment as a military commission under this chapter may direct, and, if death does not result to any of the victims, by such punishment, other than death, as a military commission under this chapter may direct.”
b. Elements.
(1) The accused engaged in an attack;
(2) The object of the attack was a civilian population as such, or individual civilians not taking direct or active part in hostilities;
(3) The accused intended the civilian population as such, or individual civilians not taking direct or active part in hostilities, to be an object of the attack;
(4) The accused knew or should have known of the factual circumstances that established the civilian status; and
(5) The attack took place in the context of and was associated with armed conflict.
c. Comment. The intent required for this offense precludes its applicability with regard to collateral damage or death, damage, or injury incident to a lawful attack.
d. Maximum punishment. Death, if the death of any person occurs as a result of the attack on civilians. Otherwise, confinement for life. 
United States, Manual for Military Commissions, published in implementation of the Military Commissions Act of 2006, 10 U.S.C. §§ 948a, et seq., 18 January 2007, Part IV, § 6(2), p. IV-4.

The US Naval Handbook (2007) states: “Civilians … may not be made the object of deliberate or indiscriminate attack”. 
United States, The Commander’s Handbook on the Law of Naval Operations, NWP 1-14M/MCWP 5-12.1/COMDTPUB P5800.7, issued by the Department of the Navy, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations and Headquarters, US Marine Corps, and Department of Homeland Security, US Coast Guard, July 2007, § 8.3; see also § 5.3.2.

The US Manual for Military Commissions (2010), Part IV, Crimes and Elements, defines a protected person as follows:
The term “protected person” means any person entitled to protection under one or more of the Geneva Conventions, including—
(A) civilians not taking an active part in hostilities. 
United States, Manual for Military Commissions, published in implementation of Chapter 47A of Title 10, United States Code, as amended by the Military Commissions Act of 2009, 10 U.S.C, §§ 948a, et seq., 27 April 2010, § 1(a)(2)(A), p. IV-1.

ATTACKING CIVILIANS.
a. Text. “Any person subject to this chapter who intentionally engages in an attack upon a civilian population as such, or individual civilians not taking active part in hostilities, shall be punished, if death results to one or more of the victims, by death or such other punishment as a military commission under this chapter may direct, and, if death does not result to any of the victims, by such punishment, other than death, as a military commission under this chapter may direct.”
b. Elements.
(1) The accused engaged in an attack;
(2) The object of the attack was a civilian population as such, or individual civilians not taking direct or active part in hostilities;
(3) The accused intended the civilian population as such, or individual civilians not taking direct or active part in hostilities, to be an object of the attack;
(4) The accused knew or should have known of the factual circumstances that established the civilian status; and
(5) The attack took place in the context of and was associated with hostilities.
c. Comment. The intent required for this offense precludes its applicability with regard to collateral damage or death, damage, or injury incident to a lawful attack.
d. Maximum punishment. Death, if the death of any person occurs as a result of the attack on civilians. Otherwise, confinement for life. 
United States, Manual for Military Commissions, published in implementation of Chapter 47A of Title 10, United States Code, as amended by the Military Commissions Act of 2009, 10 U.S.C, §§ 948a, et seq., 27 April 2010, § 5(2), pp. IV-3 and IV-4.

Yugoslavia, Socialist Federal Republic of
The Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s Military Manual (1988) states: “The civilian population may not be the direct object of military operations.” 
Yugoslavia, Socialist Federal Republic of, Propisi o Primeri Pravila Medjunarodnog Ratnog Prava u Oruzanim Snagama SFRJ, PrU-2, Savezni Sekretarijat za Narodnu Odbranu (Pravna Uprava), 1988, § 67(1); see also § 53.

Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe’s Code of Conduct for Combatants (1993) states: “Spare civilian persons.” 
Zimbabwe, Code of Conduct for Combatants, Joint publication of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces and the International Committee of the Red Cross Regional Delegation in Harare, 1993, p. 2.

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Armenia
Under Armenia’s Penal Code (2003), launching, during an armed conflict, an “attack on the civilian population or on individual civilians” constitutes a crime against the peace and security of mankind. 
Armenia, Penal Code, 2003, Article 390.3(1).

Australia
Australia’s Geneva Conventions Act (1957), as amended in 1991, provides: “A person who, in Australia or elsewhere, commits a grave breach … of [the 1977 Additional Protocol I] is guilty of an indictable offence”. 
Australia, Geneva Conventions Act, 1957, as amended in 1991, Section 7(1).

The grave breaches provisions in this Act were removed in 2002 and incorporated into the Criminal Code Act 1995.
Australia’s Criminal Code Act (1995), as amended to 2007, states with respect to serious war crimes committed in an international armed conflict:
268.35 War crime – attacking civilians
A person (the perpetrator) commits an offence if:
(a) the perpetrator directs an attack; and
(b) the object of the attack is a civilian population as such or individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities; and
(c) the perpetrator’s conduct takes place in the context of, and is associated with, an international armed conflict.
Penalty: Imprisonment for life. 
Australia, Criminal Code Act, 1995, as amended to 2007, Chapter 8, § 268.35, p. 326.

268.77 War crime – attacking civilians
A person (the perpetrator) commits an offence if:
(a) the perpetrator directs an attack; and
(b) the object of the attack is a civilian population as such or individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities; and
(c) the perpetrator’s conduct takes place in the context of, and is associated with, an armed conflict that is not an international armed conflict.
Penalty: Imprisonment for life. 
Australia, Criminal Code Act, 1995, as amended to 2007, Chapter 8, § 268.77, p. 354.

Australia’s ICC (Consequential Amendments) Act (2002) incorporates in the Criminal Code the war crimes defined in the 1998 ICC Statute, including “attacking civilians” in international and non-international armed conflicts. 
Australia, ICC (Consequential Amendments) Act, 2002, Schedule 1, §§ 268.35 and 268.77.

Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan’s Law concerning the Protection of Civilian Persons and the Rights of Prisoners of War (1995) provides that, in international and non-international armed conflicts, attacks against civilians are prohibited. 
Azerbaijan, Law concerning the Protection of Civilian Persons and the Rights of Prisoners of War, 1995, Article 15.

Azerbaijan’s Criminal Code (1999) provides that “directing attacks against the civilian population or against individual civilians who do not take part in hostilities” constitutes a war crime in international and non-international armed conflicts. 
Azerbaijan, Criminal Code, 1999, Article 116(10).

Belarus
Belarus’s Criminal Code (1999) provides that it is a war crime to “direct attacks against the civilian population or against individual civilians”. 
Belarus, Criminal Code, 1999, Article 136(10).

Belgium
Belgium’s Penal Code (1867), as amended in 2003, provides:
[N]o necessity of a … military … nature … can justify the offences defined in … [Article] 136 septies [which include the war crime of directly attacking the civilian population or individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities], even when they have been committed by way of reprisal. 
Belgium, Penal Code, 1867, as amended on 5 August 2003, Chapter III, Title I bis, Article 136 quater, § 1(20).

Belgium’s Law concerning the Repression of Grave Breaches of the Geneva Conventions and their Additional Protocols (1993), as amended in 1999, provides that “making the civilian population or individual civilians the object of attack” constitutes a crime under international law. 
Belgium, Law concerning the Repression of Grave Breaches of the Geneva Conventions and their Additional Protocols, 1993, as amended in 1999, Article 1(3)(11).

Belgium’s Law relating to the Repression of Grave Breaches of International Humanitarian Law (1993), as amended in 2003, provides:
War crimes envisaged in the 1949 [Geneva] Conventions … and in the [1977 Additional Protocols I and II] … , as well as in Article 8(2)(f) of the [1998] Statute of the International Criminal Court and listed below, … constitute crimes under international law and shall be punished in accordance with the provisions of the present title … :

11. intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities. 
Belgium, Law relating to the Repression of Grave Breaches of International Humanitarian Law, 1993, as amended on 23 April 2003, Article 1 ter, § 1(11).

Bosnia and Herzegovina
Under the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Criminal Code (1998), it is a war crime to commit or order the commission of “an attack on a civilian population … [or] individual civilians”. 
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Federation, Criminal Code, 1998, Article 154(1).

Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Criminal Code (2003) states that, in time of war, armed conflict or occupation, ordering or committing an “[a]ttack on the civilian population … [or] individual civilians”, in violation of international law, constitutes a war crime. 
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Criminal Code, 2003, Article 173(1)(a).

Burundi
Burundi’s Penal Code (1981) provides that a person who commits “[a]n attack whose aim it is to carry out a massacre … is punished with death.” 
Burundi, Penal Code, 1981, Article 417.

Burundi’s Law on Genocide, Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes (2003) states:
[The following are] considered as war crimes:

B. Other serious violations of the laws and customs applicable in international armed conflicts, within the established framework of international law, namely, any of the following acts:

a) launching deliberate attacks against the civilian population in general or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities;

D. Other serious violations of the laws and customs applicable in armed conflicts not of an international character, within the established framework of international law, namely, any of the following acts:

a) launching deliberate attacks against the civilian population in general or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities. 
Burundi, Law on Genocide, Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes, 2003, Article 4(B)(a) and (D)(a).

Burundi’s Penal Code (2009) states:
“War crimes” means crimes which are committed as part of a plan or policy or as part of a large-scale commission of such crimes, in particular:

2. … [S]erious violations of the laws and customs applicable in international armed conflict, within the established framework of international law, namely, any of the following acts:
1°. Intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities;

5. … [S]erious violations of the laws and customs applicable in armed conflicts not of an international character, within the established framework of international law, namely, any of the following acts:
1°. Intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities. 
Burundi, Penal Code, 2009, Article 198(2)(1°) and 5(1°).

Canada
Canada’s Geneva Conventions Act (1985), as amended in 2007, provides: “Every person who, whether within or outside Canada, commits a grave breach [of the 1977 Additional Protocol I] … is guilty of an indictable offence.” 
Canada, Geneva Conventions Act, 1985, as amended in 2007, Section 3(1).

Canada’s Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes Act (2000), as amended in 2001, provides that the war crimes defined in Article 8(2) of the 1998 ICC Statute are “crimes according to customary international law” and, as such, indictable offences under the Act. 
Canada, Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes Act, 2000, as amended in 2001, Section 4(1) and (4).

China
The Criminal Law of the People’s Republic of China (1979), as amended in 2002, states:
Any serviceman who, during wartime, cruelly injures innocent residents in an area of military operation or plunders their money or property shall be sentenced to fixed-term imprisonment of not more than five years; if the circumstances are serious, he shall be sentenced to fixed-term imprisonment of not less than five years but not more than 10 years; if the circumstances are especially serious, he shall be sentenced to fixed-term imprisonment of not less than 10 years, life imprisonment or death. 
China, Criminal Law of the People’s Republic of China, 1979, as amended in 2002, Article 446.

Colombia
Colombia’s Penal Code (2000) imposes a criminal sanction on “anyone who, during an armed conflict, carries out or orders the carrying out of … attacks against the civilian population”. 
Colombia, Penal Code, 2000, Article 144.

Colombia’s Directive No. 10 (2007), whose objective is to prevent the killing of protected persons, states: “Attacks against civilians do not provide any military advantage.” 
Colombia, Directive No. 10, 2007, § IV.

Congo
The Congo’s Genocide, War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity Act (1998) defines war crimes with reference to the categories of crimes defined in Article 8 of the 1998 ICC Statute. 
Congo, Genocide, War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity Act, 1998, Article 4.

Cook Islands
The Geneva Conventions and Additional Protocols Act (2002) of the Cook Islands punishes “any person who in the Cook Islands or elsewhere commits, or aids or abets or procures the commission by another person of, a grave breach … of [the 1977 Additional Protocol I]”. 
Cook Islands, Geneva Conventions and Additional Protocols Act, 2002, Section 5(1).

Croatia
Under Croatia’s Criminal Code (1997), it is a war crime to commit or order the commission of “an attack against the civilian population … [or] individual civilians”. 
Croatia, Criminal Code, 1997, Article 158(1).

Cuba
Cuba’s Military Criminal Code (1979) punishes “anyone who, in areas of military operations, commits violence against the [civilian] population”. 
Cuba, Military Criminal Code, 1979, Article 44(1).

Cyprus
Cyprus’s Additional Protocol I Act (1979) punishes “any person who, whatever his nationality, commits in the Republic or outside the Republic any grave breach of the provisions of the Protocol, or takes part or assists or incites another person in the commission of such a breach”. 
Cyprus, Additional Protocol I Act, 1979, Section 4(1).

Czech Republic
The Czech Republic’s Criminal Code (1961), as amended in 1999, punishes a commander who in a military operation intentionally “causes harm to the life, health or property of civilians or the civilian population”. 
Czech Republic, Criminal Code, 1961, as amended in 1999, Article 262(2)(a).

Denmark
Denmark’s Military Criminal Code (1973), as amended in 1978, provides:
Any person who uses war instruments or procedures the application of which violates an international agreement entered into by Denmark or the general rules of international law, shall be liable to the same penalty [i.e. a fine, lenient imprisonment or up to 12 years’ imprisonment]. 
Denmark, Military Criminal Code, 1973, as amended in 1978, § 25(1).

Any person who deliberately uses war means [“krigsmiddel”] or procedures the application of which violates an international agreement entered into by Denmark or international customary law, shall be liable to the same penalty [i.e. imprisonment up to life imprisonment]. 
Denmark, Military Criminal Code, 2005, § 36(2).

Democratic Republic of the Congo
The Democratic Republic of the Congo’s Code of Military Justice (1972), as amended in 1980, imposes a criminal sanction on “every soldier who is guilty of committing acts of violence … against the civilian population in time of war”. 
Democratic Republic of the Congo, Code of Military Justice, 1972, as amended in 1980, Article 472.

Democratic Republic of the Congo
The Democratic Republic of the Congo’s Military Penal Code (2002) provides:
Article 165
Crimes against humanity are grave violations of international humanitarian law committed against any civilian population before or during war.
Crimes against humanity are not necessarily linked to the state of war and can be committed not only between persons of different nationality, but even between subjects of the same State.
Article 166
The grave breaches listed hereafter, affecting, by action or omission, the persons and objects protected by the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 and the Additional Protocols of 8 June 1977, constitute crimes against humanity, repressed according to the provisions of the present Code, without prejudice to more severe penal provisions provided by the ordinary Penal Code:

10. Making the civilian population or individual civilians the object of attack;

Article 167
The offences contained in the preceding article are punished with penal servitude for life.
If those contained in points 1, 2, 5, 6, 10 to 14 of the same article lead to the death or cause grave injury to the physical integrity or health of one or several persons, the perpetrators are liable to the death penalty. 
Democratic Republic of the Congo, Military Penal Code, 2002, Articles 165–167.

Estonia
Under Estonia’s Penal Code (2001), “attacking civilians in war zones” is a war crime. 
Estonia, Penal Code, 2001, § 95.

France
France’s Code of Defence (2004), as amended in 2008, states that “civilians … are protected persons … It is prohibited for combatants to deliberately target protected persons.” 
France, Code of Defence, 2004, as amended in 2008, Article D4122-8.

France’s Penal Code (1994), as amended in 2010, states in its section on war crimes common to both international and non-international armed conflicts: “Intentionally launching attacks against the civilian population as such, or against individual civilians not taking a direct part in hostilities, is punishable by life imprisonment.” 
France, Penal Code, 1994, as amended in 2010, Article 461-9.

Finland
Finland’s Criminal Code (1889), as amended in 2008, provides that any person who “attacks civilian populations, civilians not taking part in hostilities or civilian targets” shall be “sentenced for a war crime to imprisonment for at least one year or for life”. 
Finland, Criminal Code, 1889, as amended in 2008, Chapter 11, Section 5(1)(9).
(emphasis in original)
Georgia
Under Georgia’s Criminal Code (1999), “making the civilian population or individual civilians the object of an attack” in an international or a non-international armed conflict is a crime. 
Georgia, Criminal Code, 1999, Article 411(1)(a).

Germany
Germany’s Law Introducing the International Crimes Code (2002) punishes anyone who, in connection with an international or a non-international armed conflict, “directs an attack by military means against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians not taking a direct part in hostilities”. 
Germany, Law Introducing the International Crimes Code, 2002, Article 1, § 11(1)(1).

Hungary
Under Hungary’s Criminal Code (1978), as amended in 1998, a military commander who “pursues a war operation which causes serious damage to the life [and] health … of the civilian population” is guilty, upon conviction, of a war crime. 
Hungary, Criminal Code, 1978, as amended in 1998, Section 160(a); see also Section 158 (committing violence in an operational or occupied area against a civilian person).

Indonesia
Indonesia’s Military Penal Code (1947) provides for the punishment of military personnel who are found guilty of having committed attacks against civilians. 
Indonesia, Military Penal Code, 1947, Article 103.

Iraq
Iraq’s Law of the Supreme Iraqi Criminal Tribunal (2005) identifies “[i]ntentionally directing attacks against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities” as a serious violation of the laws and customs of war applicable in both international and non-international armed conflicts. 
Iraq, Law of the Supreme Iraqi Criminal Tribunal, 2005, Article 13, second para., Section A, and fourth para., Section A.

Ireland
Ireland’s Geneva Conventions Act (1962), as amended in 1998, provides that grave breaches of the 1977 Additional Protocol I are punishable offences. 
Ireland, Geneva Conventions Act, 1962, as amended in 1998, Section 3(1).

Italy
Italy’s Law of War Decree (1938), as amended in 1992, states that “bombardment, the sole purpose of which is to attack the civilian population,” is prohibited. 
Italy, Law of War Decree, 1938, as amended in 1992, Article 42.

Jordan
Jordan’s Military Penal Code (2002) states that the following shall be deemed a war crime when committed in the event of armed conflict: “Intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians”. 
Jordan, Military Penal Code, 2002, Article 41(a)(9).

Lithuania
Under Lithuania’s Criminal Code (1961), as amended in 1998, “an attack, prohibited under international humanitarian law, against civilians” is a war crime. 
Lithuania, Criminal Code as amended, 1961, Article 337.

Mali
Under Mali’s Penal Code (2001), “intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population in general or against individual civilians not taking a direct part in hostilities” constitutes a war crime in international armed conflicts. 
Mali, Penal Code, 2001, Article 31(i)(1).

Netherlands
Under the International Crimes Act (2003) of the Netherlands, it is a crime, during an international armed conflict, to commit “the following acts, when they are committed intentionally and in violation of the relevant provisions of Additional Protocol (I) and cause death or serious injury to body or health: … making the civilian population or individual citizens the object of attack”. Likewise, “intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities” is a crime, whether committed in an international or non-international armed conflict. 
Netherlands, International Crimes Act, 2003, Articles 5(2)(c)(i) and (5)(m) and 6(3)(a).

New Zealand
New Zealand’s Geneva Conventions Act (1958), as amended in 1987, provides: “Any person who in New Zealand or elsewhere commits, or aids or abets or procures the commission by another person of, a grave breach … of [the 1977 Additional Protocol I] is guilty of an indictable offence.” 
New Zealand, Geneva Conventions Act, 1958, as amended in 1987, Section 3(1).

Under New Zealand’s International Crimes and ICC Act (2000), war crimes include the crimes defined in Article 8(2)(b)(i) and (e)(i) of the 1998 ICC Statute. 
New Zealand, International Crimes and ICC Act, 2000, Section 11(2).

Niger
According to Niger’s Penal Code (1961), as amended in 2003, “directing an attack against the civilian population or against individual civilians” protected under the 1949 Geneva Conventions and their Additional Protocols of 1977 is a war crime. 
Niger, Penal Code, 1961, as amended in 2003, Article 208.3(11).

Norway
Norway’s Military Penal Code (1902), as amended in 1981, provides:
Anyone who contravenes or is accessory to the contravention of provisions relating to the protection of persons or property laid down in … the two additional protocols to [the 1949 Geneva] Conventions … is liable to imprisonment. 
Norway, Military Penal Code, 1902, as amended in 1981, § 108(b).

Norway’s Penal Code (1902), as amended in 2008, states: “Any person is liable to punishment for a war crime who in connection with an armed conflict … directs an attack against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities.” 
Norway, Penal Code, 1902, as amended in 2008, § 106(a).

Peru
Peru’s Code of Military and Police Justice (2006) states:
A member of the military or police shall be imprisoned for a period of no less than eight and no more than 15 years if he or she in the context of an international or non-international armed conflict:
1. Directs an attack by any means against a civilian population. 
Peru, Code of Military and Police Justice, 2006, Article 95(1).

Peru’s Decree on the Use of Force by the Armed Forces (2010) states: “The civilian population may not be attacked.” 
Peru, Decree on the Use of Force by the Armed Forces, 2010, Article 7(b).

Peru’s Military and Police Criminal Code (2010), in a chapter titled “Crimes involving the use of prohibited methods in the conduct of hostilities”, states:
A member of the military or the police shall be punished with deprivation of liberty of not less than six years and not more than twenty-five years if, in a state of emergency and when the Armed Forces assume control of the internal order, he or she:
1. Attacks by any means the civilian population or a person who is not directly participating in hostilities. 
Peru, Military and Police Criminal Code, 2010, Article 91(1).

Republic of Korea
The Republic of Korea’s ICC Act (2007) provides for the punishment of anyone who commits the war crime of “[d]irecting attacks against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities” in both international and non-international armed conflicts.  
Republic of Korea, ICC Act, 2007, Article 13(1)(1).

Rwanda
Rwanda’s Law Repressing the Crime of Genocide, Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes (2003) provides:
Article: 8
A war crime is one of the following acts, committed during armed conflicts against persons or property protected under the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 and their Additional Protocols I and II of 8 June 1977:
...
9° launching a deliberate attack against the civilian population or against its objects, in the knowledge that such attack will cause loss of life or injury or grave damage to their objects, which would be judged as excessive in relation to the military advantage anticipated;
...
Article: 9
Shall be punished by one of the following penalties any person having committed one of the war crimes provided for in Article 8 of this law:
1° the death penalty or life imprisonment where he has committed a crime provided for in point 1°, 2°, 3°, 9°, 11° or 16° of Article 8 of this law. 
Rwanda, Law Repressing the Crime of Genocide, Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes, 2003, Articles 8–9.

Senegal
Senegal’s Penal Code (1965), as amended in 2007, states that the following constitute war crimes:
b) [O]ther serious violations of the laws and customs applicable in international armed conflict, within the established framework of international law, namely, any of the following acts:

1. launching deliberate attacks against the civilian population in general or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities;

d) …
Other serious violations of the laws and customs applicable in armed conflicts not of an international character, within the established framework of international law, namely, any of the following acts:
1. launching deliberate attacks against the civilian population in general or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities. 
Senegal, Penal Code, 1965, as amended in 2007, Article 431-3(b)(1) and (d)(1).

Serbia
Serbia’s Criminal Code (2005) states that ordering or committing “an attack on the civilian population” in violation of international law constitutes a war crime. 
Serbia, Criminal Code, 2005, Article 372(1).

Slovakia
Slovakia’s Criminal Code (1961), as amended, punishes a commander who in a military operation intentionally “causes harm to the life, health or property of civilians or the civilian population”. 
Slovakia, Criminal Code, 1961, as amended, Article 262(2)(a).

Slovenia
Under Slovenia’s Penal Code (1994), it is a war crime to commit or order the commission of “an attack on the civilian population … [or] on individual civilians”. 
Slovenia, Penal Code, 1994, Article 374(1).

Somalia
Somalia’s Military Criminal Code (1963) states:
A soldier who, needlessly or otherwise without justification, for reasons not extraneous to the war, uses violence against enemy private individuals who are not taking part in military operations shall be punished by military confinement for up to two years. 
Somalia, Military Criminal Code, 1963, Article 369.

Somalia’s Act of Military Discipline (1975) states:
35. Every soldier who is carrying arms to defend his country, but violates others who are not carrying arms, is in breach of his duties and is subject to a severe punishment.
36. Every soldier in the army … should protect [the] civilian population at all times. 
Somalia, Act of Military Discipline, 1975, Articles 35–36.

South Africa
South Africa’s ICC Act (2002) reproduces the war crimes listed in the 1998 ICC Statute, including in both international and non-international armed conflicts: “intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities”. 
South Africa, ICC Act, 2002, Schedule 1, Part 3, §§ (b)(i) and (e)(i).

Spain
Spain’s Royal Ordinance for the Armed Forces (1978) emphasizes the obligation to pay due attention to the protection of the civilian population. 
Spain, Royal Ordinance for the Armed Forces, 1978, Article 137.

Spain’s Penal Code (1995) punishes “anyone who, during an armed conflict, … makes the civilian population the object of attack”. 
Spain, Penal Code, 1995, Article 611(1).

Sudan
Sudan’s Armed Forces Act (2007) provides:
Subject to provisions of the Criminal Act of 1991, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term not exceeding twenty years, whoever knowingly and voluntarily violates the laws and customs regulating armed conflicts, intentionally, and without military necessity:
(a) directs attacks against civilian population in their capacity as such, or civilians who do not directly participate in warfare. 
Sudan, Armed Forces Act, 2007, Article 153.

Sweden
Sweden’s Penal Code (1962), as amended in 1998, provides that “attacks on civilians” constitute a crime against international law. 
Sweden, Penal Code, 1962 as amended in 1998, Chapter 22, § 6.

Tajikistan
Tajikistan’s Criminal Code (1998) punishes the act of “making the civilian population or individual civilians the object of attack” in an international or non-international armed conflict. 
Tajikistan, Criminal Code, 1998, Article 403(1).

Ukraine
Ukraine’s Criminal Code (2001) provides that “violence … committed against the civilian population in an area of military action under the pretext of military necessity” is a war crime. 
Ukraine, Criminal Code, 2001, Article 433(1).

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The UK Geneva Conventions Act (1957), as amended in 1977, punishes “any person, whatever his nationality, who, whether in or outside the United Kingdom, commits, or aids, abets or procures the commission by any other person of, a grave breach of … [the 1977 Additional Protocol I]”. 
United Kingdom, Geneva Conventions Act, 1957, as amended in 1977, Section 1(1).

Under the UK ICC Act (2001), it is a punishable offence to commit a war crime as defined in Article 8(2)(b)(i) and (e)(i) of the 1998 ICC Statute. 
United Kingdom, ICC Act, 2001, Sections 50(1) and 51(1) (England and Wales) and Section 58(1) (Northern Ireland).

United States of America
The US Military Commissions Act (2006), passed by Congress following the US Supreme Court’s decision in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld in 2006, amends Title 10 of the United States Code as follows:
§ 950v. Crimes triable by military commissions
“(a) DEFINITIONS AND CONSTRUCTION. – In this section:
“ …
“(2) PROTECTED PERSON. – The term “protected person” means any person entitled to protection under one or more of the Geneva Conventions, including –
“(b) OFFENSES. – The following offenses shall be triable by military commission under this chapter at any time without limitation:
“ …
“(2) ATTACKING CIVILIANS. – Any person subject to this chapter who intentionally engages in an attack upon a civilian population as such, or individual civilians not taking active part in hostilities, shall be punished, if death results to one or more of the victims, by death or such other punishment as a military commission under this chapter may direct, and, if death does not result to any of the victims, by such punishment, other than death, as a military commission under this chapter may direct. 
United States, Military Commissions Act, 2006, Public Law 109-366, Chapter 47A of Title 10 of the United States Code, 17 October 2006, p. 120 Stat. 2626, § 950v(b)(2).

The US Military Commissions Act (2009) amends Chapter 47A of Title 10 of the United States Code as follows:
§ 950p. Definitions; construction of certain offenses; common circumstances
“(a) DEFINITIONS.—In this subchapter:
“ …
“(2) The term “protected person” means any person entitled to protection under one or more of the [1949] Geneva Conventions, including civilians not taking an active part in hostilities … 
United States, Military Commissions Act, 2009, § 950p(a)(2).

§ 950t. Crimes triable by military commission
“The following offenses shall be triable by military commission under this chapter at any time without limitation:
“ …
“(2) ATTACKING CIVILIANS.—Any person subject to this chapter who intentionally engages in an attack upon a civilian population as such, or individual civilians not taking active part in hostilities, shall be punished, if death results to one or more of the victims, by death or such other punishment as a military commission under this chapter may direct, and, if death does not result to any of the victims, by such punishment, other than death, as a military commission under this chapter may direct. 
United States, Military Commissions Act, 2009, § 950t(2).

Uruguay
Uruguay’s Law on Cooperation with the ICC (2006) states:
26.2. Persons and objects affected by the war crimes set out in the present provision are persons and objects which international law protects in international or internal armed conflict.
26.3. The following are war crimes:

9. Intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities. 
Uruguay, Law on Cooperation with the ICC, 2006, Article 26.2 and 26.3.9.

Viet Nam
Viet Nam’s Penal Code (1990) punishes “anyone who commits acts of violence against the population”. 
Viet Nam, Penal Code, 1990, Article 273.

Yemen
Under Yemen’s Military Criminal Code (1998), “attacks against the civilian population” are war crimes. 
Yemen, Military Criminal Code, 1998, Article 21(6).

Yugoslavia, Socialist Federal Republic of
Under the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s Penal Code (1976), as amended in 2001, it is a war crime to commit or order the commission of “an attack on the civilian population … [or] individual civilians”. 
Yugoslavia, Socialist Federal Republic of, Penal Code, 1976, as amended in 2001, Article 142(1).

Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe’s Geneva Conventions Act (1981), as amended in 1996, punishes “any person, whatever his nationality, who, whether in or outside Zimbabwe, commits any such grave breach of … [the 1977 Additional Protocol I]”. 
Zimbabwe, Geneva Conventions Act, 1981, as amended in 1996, Section 3(1).

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Australia
In 2004, in the SZAOG case, Australia’s Federal Court stated:
Targeting a civilian population in civil conflict is a breach of humanitarian standards. For instance, the Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and Relating to the Protection of Victims of Non-International Armed Conflicts [Additional Protocol II], opened for signature Dec. 12, 1977, art. 13, 1124 U.N.T.S. 609, 16 I.L.M. 1442 (1977) art 13. (entered into force 8 June 1977) provides that the civilian population shall enjoy general protection against the dangers arising from military operations and shall not be the object of attack. 
Australia, Federal Court, SZAOG case, Judgment, 26 November 2004, § 17.

Bosnia and Herzegovina
In 2007, in the Lučić case, the Panel of the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina stated: “Each attack against the other [side’s] civilian population would be … illegitimate”. 
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Lučić case, Judgment, 19 September 2007, p. 62.

In 2007, in the Janković case, the Appellate Panel of the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina stated that “any attack against the civilian population of the other side would be … unlawful”. 
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Janković case, Judgment, 23 October 2007, p. 8.

Colombia
In 2007, in the Constitutional Case No. C-291/07, the Plenary Chamber of Colombia’s Constitutional Court stated that the prohibition of attacks against civilians in the 1977 Additional Protocol II “has attained customary status, mainly due to its impact on State practice and on conflicts in the last decades”. 
Colombia, Constitutional Court, Constitutional Case No. C-291/07, Judgment of 25 April 2007, p. 69.

The principle of distinction is complex and encompasses a number of treaty and customary norms applicable in internal armed conflicts, in addition to, in many cases, enjoying ius cogens status. These rules [include] … the prohibition of direct attacks against the civilian population. 
Colombia, Constitutional Court, Constitutional Case No. C-291/07, Judgment of 25 April 2007, pp. 84–86.

Prohibited attacks are those where the primary objective is the civilian population. In order to determine whether an attack has been directed against the civilian population, international case law has taken into account factors such as: the means and methods employed for the attack, the number and status of the victims, the nature of the crimes committed during the attack, the resistence encountered, and the extent to which the attacking force complied or attempted to comply with the precautionary principle under international humanitarian law. It is not required that the attack be directed toward the civilian population as a whole in the geographic location where the events occur. But it must be proven that the attack was not directed against a limited number of individuals. 
Colombia, Constitutional Court, Constitutional Case No. C-291/07, Judgment of 25 April 2007, p. 90.
[footnotes in original omitted]
The prohibition of indiscriminate attacks … is directly related to the prohibition of direct attacks against the civilian population, so much so that the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia has classified the commission of attacks using indiscriminate means as attacks directed against civilians. 
Colombia, Constitutional Court, Constitutional Case No. C-291/07, Judgment of 25 April 2007, p. 96.
[footnote in original omitted]
Croatia
In the RA. R. case in 1997, the District Court of Split in Croatia sentenced 39 people, both soldiers and commanders, to prison terms ranging from 5 to 20 years on charges which included attacks on civilians. 
Croatia, District Court of Split, RA. R. case, Judgment, 26 May 1997.

Germany
In 2010, in the Fuel Tankers case, the Federal Prosecutor General at Germany’s Federal Court of Justice investigated whether war crimes or other crimes under domestic law had been committed in the course of an airstrike which was ordered by a colonel (Oberst) of the German armed forces against two tankers transporting fuel for the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan stolen by the Taliban near Kunduz and which resulted in the deaths of a number of civilians. The Federal Prosecutor General stated:
Pursuant to § 170 para. 2 StPO [Penal Procedure Code], the investigation proceedings which were initiated by the order of 12 March 2010 against Colonel (Oberst) Klein and Company Sergeant Major (Hauptfeldwebel) Wilhelm due to suspected offences under the VStGB [International Crimes Code] and other offences are to be terminated as a result of the investigations conducted and based on the sources of information set out hereafter and on the reasons given in detail hereafter. 
Germany, Federal Court of Justice, Federal Prosecutor General, Fuel Tankers case, Decision, 16 April 2010, p. 1.

4.
Other crimes under the VStGB
Colonel (Oberst) Klein is not criminally responsible … for other crimes listed in the International Crimes Code. …

b)
Criminal responsibility under § 11 para. 1 no. 1 VStGB (attacks against the civilian population or against individual civilians who are not directly participating in attacks) is excluded. … [T]he attack was not directed against civilians as such, but against military objectives. If civilians are injured as a side effect of such a military attack, only criminal responsibility under § 11 para. 1 no. 3, not § 11 para. 1 no. 1 VStGB is pertinent. 
Germany, Federal Court of Justice, Federal Prosecutor General, Fuel Tankers case, Decision, 16 April 2010, pp. 50–51.

Colonel (Oberst) Klein’s actions were lawful under international law and therefore justified under domestic criminal law …
In the assessment of the lawfulness of military attacks in non-international armed conflict which result in the killing of persons, the victims’ status under the international law of armed conflict is of particular relevance. One must distinguish whether the victims are armed fighters of the adverse party, civilians directly participating in hostilities, or other civilians. … Only civilians who are not directly participating in hostilities benefit from the protection of international humanitarian law. 
Germany, Federal Court of Justice, Federal Prosecutor General, Fuel Tankers case, Decision, 16 April 2010, p. 59.

Iraq
In its judgment in the Al-Anfal case in 2007, the Iraqi High Tribunal listed the following elements for the crime of attacks against civilians:
1. When the perpetrator of the crime implements an attack.
2. The target of the attack must be civilians as their status, or civilians who are not directly participating in the military operations.
3. When the perpetrator of the crime is intentionally targeting civilians as their status, or civilians who are not directly participating in the military operations.
4. When the conduct of the perpetrator performed within non-international armed conflict or linked with it.
5. The perpetrator of the crime acknowledges the factual circumstances which prove the existence of an armed conflict. 
Iraq, Iraqi High Tribunal, Al-Anfal case, Judgment, 24 June 2007, p. 575; see also pp. 676, 776–777 and 872, based on a translation available at http://law.case.edu/grotian-moment-blog/anfal/opinion.asp (last accessed on 1 April 2010).

The war crime as attack against the civilians requires the availability of numbers of evidence such as a proof of the death or the injuries among the civilians, the proof that the main picture of the victims is non combatants. Also, no distinction between the combatants and civilians, a proof that the case exceeds being only an internal turbulence, a proof that the insurgent side possesses an organized armed force and an authority responsible for its actions and performing activities in a certain region and having all the methods of respecting and guaranteeing the compliance with the Geneva Conventions, proof that the committed action was executed in a time and geographic frame during a military conflict, a proof that the military conflict played a vital role in the perpetrator’s capability to commit the crime, and on his decision to commit the crime, and the purpose of committing it, a proof that the perpetrator knows at least some of the circumstances.

The attack directed against the civilians as a crime of the war crimes, requires a premeditation of directing attacks against civilians who do not take part directly in the war activities … and also requires an attack, and the purpose of this attack the civilian inhabitants … and this conduct occurs in during a non-international armed conflict … and the crime perpetrator is aware of the factual circumstances which prove this conflict.
The elements to prove this crime:
It is the proof of death or injured among the civilian inhabitants, and that the general scene of the victims, were not military, and proof of no distinction between civilians and combatants, and evidence that the situation exceeds the fact of being a mere internal disturbance … and proof that the rebellious party possesses organized armed force which operates in a defined region, and owns the methods to respect the (Geneva) Conventions … and the proof that the perpetrated action is done in a specific time and geographic limit during the conflict.

The legal requirements needed to prove the crime basics and how much it corresponds with the perpetrator’s act to be able to prosecute him are: First, the crime perpetrator must carry [out] an attack; the purpose of the attack must be civil residents or civil individuals not directly involved in war operations. The elements of proof [pertaining to the two requirements] are the evidence that the victims’ general view indicates that they are not military individuals. 
Iraq, Iraqi High Tribunal, Al-Anfal case, Judgment, 24 June 2007, pp. 575–576, 676–677 and 873, based on a translation available at http://law.case.edu/grotian-moment-blog/anfal/opinion.asp (last accessed on 1 April 2010).

Israel
In the Kassem case in 1969, the Israeli Military Court at Ramallah stated: “Immunity of non-combatants from direct attack is one of the basic rules of the international law of war.” 
Israel, Military Court at Ramallah, Kassem case, Judgment, 13 April 1969.

In its judgment in the Public Committee against Torture in Israel case in 2006, Israel’s High Court of Justice stated:
23. … Opposite the combatants and military objectives stand the civilians and civilian objectives. Military attack directed at them is forbidden. Their lives and bodies are protected from the dangers of combat, provided that they themselves do not take a direct part in the combat. That customary principle is worded as follows:
“Rule 1: The parties to the conflict must at all times distinguish between civilians and combatants. Attacks may only be directed against combatants. Attacks must not be directed against civilians.
Rule 6: Civilians are protected against attack unless and for such time as they take a direct part in hostilities.
Rule 7: The parties to the conflict must at all times distinguish between civilian objects and military objectives. Attacks may only be directed against military objectives. Attacks must not be directed against civilian objects.”.
This approach – which protects the lives, bodies, and property of civilians who are not taking a direct part in the armed conflict – passes like a thread throughout the caselaw of the Supreme Court …

26. Customary international law regarding armed conflicts protects “civilians” from harm as a result of the hostilities. The International Court of Justice discussed that in The Legality of Nuclear Weapons, stating:
“states must never make civilians the object of attack” (p. 257).
That customary principle is expressed in article 51(2) of The First Protocol, according to which:
“The civilian population as such, as well as individual civilians, shall not be the object of attack”. 
Israel, High Court of Justice, Public Committee against Torture in Israel case, Judgment, 14 December 2006, §§ 23 and 26.

In its judgment in Physicians for Human Rights v. Prime Minister of Israel in 2009 concerning the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip consequent to the start of Israeli military operations (“Cast Lead”) there in December 2008, Israel’s High Court of Justice stated:
14. The normative arrangements that govern the armed conflict between the State of Israel and the Hamas organization are complex. They revolve around the international laws relating to an international armed conflict. Admittedly, the classification of the armed conflict between the state of Israel and the Hamas organization as an international conflict raises several difficulties. But in a host of judgments we have regarded this conflict as an international conflict. …
15. … [T]he normative arrangements that govern the State of Israel when it conducts combat operations in the Gaza Strip derive from several legal sources. These legal sources include international humanitarian law, which is enshrined mainly in the Fourth Hague Convention Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land, 1907, and the regulations annexed thereto, whose provisions have the status of customary international law; the Fourth Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, 1949, whose customary provisions constitute a part of the law of the State of Israel and have required interpretation by this court in several judgments … and the first Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 Relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts (Protocol I), 1977 (hereafter – “the First Protocol”), to which Israel is not a party, but whose customary provisions also constitute a part of Israeli law. …

17. Everyone agrees that the rules of customary international law – … [that] require the civilian population to be protected and its basic rights to be upheld – apply to the combat operations that are being carried out in the “Cast Lead” operation and bind the actions of the IDF [Israel Defense Forces]. 
Israel, High Court of Justice, Physicians for Human Rights v. Prime Minister of Israel, Judgment, 19 January 2009, §§ 14–15 and 17.

Peru
In 2004, in the Gabriel Orlando Vera Navarrete case, Peru’s Constitutional Court stated that “international humanitarian law prohibits in absolute terms any attacks on the lives of civilians and unarmed persons anytime and anywhere”. 
Peru, Constitutional Court, Gabriel Orlando Vera Navarrete case, Case No. 2798-04-HC/TC, Judgment of 9 December 2004, § 15.

In 2005, in the Juan Nolberto Rivero Lazo case, Peru’s Constitutional Court stated that “international humanitarian law prohibits in absolute terms any attacks on the lives of civilians and unarmed persons anytime and anywhere”. 
Peru, Constitutional Court, Juan Nolberto Rivero Lazo case, Case No. 4677-2005-HC/TC, Judgment of 12 August 2005, § 18.

In 2006, in the Lucanmarca case, the Second Provisional Criminal Chamber of Peru’s Supreme Court of Justice stated that “international humanitarian law prohibits in absolute terms attacks against the lives of unarmed civilians anywhere and anytime”. 
Peru, Supreme Court of Justice, Second Provisional Criminal Chamber, Lucanmarca case, Case No. 560-03, Judgment of 13 October 2006, p. 189.

Spain
In 2010, in the Couso case, the Criminal Chamber of Spain’s Supreme Court was called upon to decide an appeal in the case concerning the killing of a Spanish journalist in Baghdad on 8 April 2003 by troops of the United States of America. In deciding upon one of the issues raised in the appeal on breach of the law due to the failure to apply Article 611 of the Penal Code (1995), the court noted:
2. Article 611 of the PC [Penal Code] effectively punishes
“anyone who in the event of an armed conflict commits [any of the following acts], without prejudice to the penalty for the results of such acts, shall be punished with ten to fifteen years’ imprisonment:
1. … [M]akes the civilian population the object of attacks”. 
Spain, Supreme Court, Couso case, Judgment, 13 July 2010, Section II(II), Sexto, § 2, p. 11.
[emphasis in original]
The appealed decision declared the termination of the proceedings … as it considered that the “facts [of] the case did not constitute an offence” … [H]owever, the proceedings carried out do not permit sharing the conclusions of the first instance tribunal; rather, the facts [denounced] merit being subsumed under the cited penal provisions and the aforementioned norms of International Humanitarian Law. 
Spain, Supreme Court, Couso case, Judgment, 13 July 2010, Section II(II), Sexto, § 2, p. 16.
[emphasis in original]
1. It is understood that jurisprudence only requires that there be a belief that an offence has been likely committed in order to institute proceedings, without it being necessary to certify that the accused persons are the authors of the offence, as determining the certainty of the existence [of an offence] is the responsibility of the sentencing tribunal. …
2. Due to their similarity with this matter, we must refer to what has been said in relation to the fifth and sixth issues raised by the previous appellants concerning the existence of rational indications of the commission of an offence which violate the ius in bello, namely the norms of International Humanitarian Law that must be observed by belligerents.

… [I]t is important to note that the principle of self-defence cannot be applied even in the case of military operations that are supposedly defensive or in response to real prior aggressions … when a belligerent commits any of the actions classified as contrary to the Law of War, such as attacking in any of the described manners those considered to be “protected persons” according to Article 608 of the PC, regardless of the penalty for the results of such acts as provided in Article 611(1) of the same code …
In addition, as criminal responsibility is purely personal, the military doctrine known as “shock and awe” consisting of acts such as the bombardment of protected persons … in the event of armed conflict … results in the criminal responsibility of the person exercising control over the specific direction of the military operations. 
Spain, Supreme Court, Couso case, Judgment, 13 July 2010, Section II(III), Octavo, §§ 1–2, pp. 17–18.
[emphasis in original]
Venezuela
In 2001, in the Ballestas case, the Colombian government requested the preventive detention and extradition of a Colombian citizen belonging to the armed group known as the Ejército de Liberación Nacional (National Liberation Army) for the crimes of rebellion, kidnapping, wrongful death, seizure and diversion of aircraft. The Chamber of Criminal Appeals of Venezuela’s Supreme Tribunal of Justice stated:
Attacks on innocent people who have no relationship to the interests at stake or to the problem, and who have given no provocation in word or deed, are not justified even in a military war. … [These are] governed by laws that prohibit attacks on civilians or persons uninvolved in the conflict … To conclude, in view of the foregoing, aggression is selective even in conventional warfare between military powers, so as not to harm the innocent. 
Venezuela, Supreme Tribunal of Justice, Ballestas case, Judgment, 10 December 2001, p. 8.

It is a firm and incontrovertible fact that political armed struggle must be governed by the laws of war. As a result, attacks against innocent [people] … are absolutely unjustified, even where a political motive is claimed.
Thus: if such an attack against innocent [persons] … is carried out with such a violence and malicious intent that it causes unnecessary suffering, havoc and terror, it would [constitute the offence of] indiscriminate terrorism, namely [those acts] that are not selective when choosing their targets and expressly target the innocent. 
Venezuela, Supreme Tribunal of Justice, Ballestas case, Judgment, 10 December 2001, p. 9.
[emphasis in original]
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Australia
In 1996, during a debate in the UN General Assembly following the shelling of the UN compound at Qana, Australia stated that all attacks against civilians were totally unacceptable and contrary to the norms of international law. 
Australia, Statement before the UN General Assembly, UN Doc. A/50/PV.116, 25 April 1996, p. 6.

In 2009, in a ministerial statement before the House of Representatives on the humanitarian crisis in Sri Lanka, Australia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs stated: “We again condemn the LTTE’s [Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam’s] targeting of civilians in or departing the conflict zone.” 
Australia, House of Representatives, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Ministerial statement: Humanitarian Crisis in Sri Lanka, Hansard, 12 May 2009, p. 3502.

Azerbaijan
In 1993, the Ministry of the Interior of Azerbaijan ordered that troops “in zones of combat, during military operations … must not shoot at children, women and elderly without defence”. 
Azerbaijan, Ministry of the Interior, Command of the Troops of the Interior, Order No. 42, Baku, 9 January 1993, § 4.

Bangladesh
In 2010, during a debate in the UN Security Council on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the Counsellor of the Permanent Mission of Bangladesh stated: “Protection for civilians is a basic principle of humanitarian law: civilians not taking part in the fighting must on no account be attacked and must be spared and protected.”  
Bangladesh, Statement by the Counsellor of the Permanent Mission before the UN Security Council on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, 7 July 2010.

Belgium
In 1969, during a debate in the UN General Assembly, Belgium referred to the conflict in Nigeria as non-international and, in this context, referred to “the reprobation and prohibition of everything leading to total war where civilian, non-combatant inhabitants, who often have nothing whatever to do with the conflict, become the victims of war through … being the victims of attacks”. 
Belgium, Statement before the UN General Assembly, UN Doc. A/PV.1765, 25 September 1969, §§ 130–133.

In an explanatory memorandum submitted to the Belgian parliament in 1985 in the context of the ratification procedure of the Additional Protocols, the Belgian government stated:
Article 51 [of the 1977 Additional Protocol I] embodies the first statement in treaty law of the customary law principle of civilian immunity [from attack], whether against individual civilians or against the civilian population as a whole. 
Belgium, House of Representatives, Explanatory memorandum on a draft bill for the approval of the Additional Protocols, 1984–1985 Session, Doc. 1096-1, 9 January 1985, p. 10.

Belgium
In 2007, during a debate in the UN Security Council on the situation in Africa, the representative of Belgium stated, with reference to Sudan:
The attacks against civilians, carried out as much by the Governmental forces as by the rebel forces and militias, are continuing, and serious violations of international law are increasing in number. Such violations are clearly unacceptable, and we cannot tolerate their continuation. While underscoring the chief responsibility of the Government of the Sudan, Belgium insists that all parties must ensure the protection of civilians. … My delegation is convinced that the protection of civilians … must be the absolute priority of the international community. 
Belgium, Statement by the Deputy Permanent Representative of Belgium before the UN Security Council on “The situation in Africa”, 4 April 2007, p. 11.

Bosnia and Herzegovina
The Report on the Practice of Bosnia and Herzegovina provides the following examples of alleged violations of the prohibition of attacks on civilians which were denounced by the authorities: the artillery shelling in the centre of Srebrenica, which resulted in civilian casualties; 
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Appeal of the War Presidency of Srebrenica Municipality, No. 180/93, 25 January 1993, Report on the Practice of Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2000, Chapter 1.3.
the shelling of Goražde; 
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Headquarters of the Supreme Command of the Armed Forces, Office of the Commander in Chief, Letter of protest to UNPROFOR, No. 0141/21-219, 29 March 1994, Report on the Practice of Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2000, Chapter 1.3.
the attack on the village of Pripečak, in which several civilians were killed or wounded; 
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Headquarters of the Supreme Command of the Armed Forces, Office of the Commander in Chief, Letter of protest to UNPROFOR, No. 01-1/21-230, 30 March 1994, Report on the Practice of Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2000, Chapter 1.3.
and the attacks by Yugoslav aircraft in the Tuzla region, in which many residential facilities were destroyed and several civilians killed or wounded. 
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ministry of Defence, Letter to the Headquarters of the Yugoslav Army in Belgrade, No. 02/333-232, 1 June 1992, Report on the Practice of Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2000, Chapter 1.3.

Botswana
The Report on the Practice of Botswana states that Article 51 of the 1977 Additional Protocol I outlaws all attacks against civilians. 
Report on the Practice of Botswana, 1998, Chapter 1.4.

Chile
On the basis of Chile’s Code of Military Justice and in the absence of any contrary practice, the Report on the Practice of Chile states that it is Chile’s opinio juris that the prohibition of attacks on the civilian population is an integral part of customary international law. 
Report on the Practice of Chile, 1997, Chapter 1.4, referring to Code of Military Justice, 1925, Article 262.

China
During the Korean War, China confirmed that it was against the bombing of Korean cities and the civilian population by US air forces. China supported North Korea’s solemn protest to the UN Security Council, and requested that the Security Council take immediate measures to stop the “atrocities” committed by the US armed forces, which were “violating international law and against normal standards of human ethics”. 
China, Telegraph of the Minister of Foreign Affairs to the UN, Documents on Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China, World Knowledge Press, Beijing, 1950, Vol. 1, p. 134.

Colombia
On the basis of an opinion of the First Deputy Attorney-General in a case before the Council of State in 1994, the Report on the Practice of Colombia defines direct attacks against civilians as any operation that corresponds to one of the following three situations: a) it does not follow plans and strategies that respect the law of nations; b) the necessary staff and resources to save the lives of the victims are lacking; c) the attacks do not cease once the adverse party has been neutralized. 
Report on the Practice of Colombia, 1998, Chapter 1.4, referring to Council of State, Case No. 9276, Opinion of the First Deputy Attorney-General, 19 August 1994.

Croatia
In 1992, in a letter to the President of the UN Security Council, Croatia denounced direct attacks against the civilian population and civilian facilities carried out by “Serbs from Bosnia and Herzegovina and … from the UN Protected Area territories in Croatia”. Croatia considered that “the only aim of such an aggression is the destruction of civilian population and destruction of civilian facilities”, adding that “such acts are contrary to the provisions of Articles 51 and 52 of Additional Protocol I”. 
Croatia, Letter dated 24 August 1992 to the President of the UN Security Council, UN Doc. S/24481, 25 August 1992, p. 3.

The Report on the Practice of Croatia states that it is Croatia’s opinio juris that the duty not to attack civilians is part of customary international law. 
Report on the Practice of Croatia, 1997, Chapter 1.1.

Denmark
In 2008, in a statement before the Sixth Committee of the UN General Assembly on the status of the 1977 Additional Protocols, on behalf of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, the representative of Sweden stated: “We call upon all states and entities to respect the existing body of international humanitarian law, particularly with regard to the obligations to protect civilians.” 
Denmark, Statement before the Sixth Committee of the UN General Assembly made by the representative of Sweden on behalf of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden on “Item 76: Status of the Protocols Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and relating to the protection of victims of armed conflicts”, 23 October 2008.

Djibouti
In 2010, in the History and Geography Textbook for 8th Grade, Djibouti’s Ministry of National Education and Higher Education, in a section on “Distinction” and under the heading “Basic rules of IHL”, stated: “It is prohibited to attack civilians.” 
Djibouti, Ministry of National Education and Higher Education, History and Geography Textbook for 8th Grade, 2010, p. 194.

[A former combatant reports:] “We ended up attacking entire families. What prompted us was that they have done the same to our people; they have killed babies as young as three months old.” 
Djibouti, Ministry of National Education and Higher Education, History and Geography Textbook for 8th Grade, 2010, pp. 200–201.

In 2011, in the History and Geography Textbook for 9th Grade, Djibouti’s Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training, under the heading “[O]ffences related to violations of humanitarian law”, listed: “[i]ntentionally directing attacks against the civilian population”. 
Djibouti, Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training, History and Geography Textbook for 9th Grade, 2011, p. 210.

Egypt
In its written statement submitted to the ICJ in the Nuclear Weapons case in 1995, Egypt asserted that the use of nuclear weapons would violate basic principles of the international law of armed conflict, including “the prohibition to attack civilians”. 
Egypt, Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, 20 June 1995, § 35(B)(1).

France
In 1983, in reply to a question in parliament, the French Minister of Foreign Affairs declared that the bombardment of civilian populations in Afghanistan was “just one of the cruel aspects of the war”. 
France, Reply by the Minister of Foreign Affairs to a question in parliament regarding Afghanistan, 25 July 1983, Politique étrangère de la France, July 1983, p. 72.

In 1989, in reply to a question in parliament, the French Prime Minister stated that the civilian population had been the target of repeated bombardment and made a solemn appeal to Syria, General Aoun and Doctor Hoss to “stop the deliberate bombardment of the civilian population”. 
France, Reply by Prime Minister Michel Rocard to a question in parliament, 19 April 1989, Politique étrangère de la France, April 1989, p. 72.

In a communiqué regarding Rwanda issued in 1994, the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned “the bombardments against civilian populations who have fled to Goma in Zaire … These attacks on the security of populations are unacceptable.” 
France, Communiqué of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs regarding Rwanda, 17 July 1994, Politique étrangère de la France, July 1994, p. 101.

The instructions given to the French armed forces for the conduct of Opération Mistral, simulating a military operation under the right of self-defence or a mandate of the UN Security Council, state: “Neither the civilian population as such nor individual civilians … shall be made the object of attack.” 
France, Etat-major de la Force d’Action Rapide, Ordres pour l’Opération Mistral, 1995, Section 6, § 66.

In a communiqué issued in 1995, the French Minister of Foreign Affairs expressed his distress at “the bombardment of the centre of Sarajevo, which once again had caused numerous casualties among the civilian population of the Bosnian capital”. He further stated: “This barbarous act calls for the most severe condemnation.”  
France, Communiqué by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hervé de Charette, 28 August 1995, Politique étrangère de la France, August 1995, p. 169.

In 1999, in reply to a question in parliament, a French Minister stated:
We are all under the shock of the immense emotion caused by the massacre of 45 civilians in Racak, on 16 January, by the Serbian police. These atrocities have been unanimously condemned by the international community. France has expressed its revolt and distaste, the Prime Minister has denounced this “barbarous act”. 
France, Reply by Pierre Moscovici, Ministre Délegué for European Affairs, to a question in parliament, 19 January 1999, Politique étrangère de la France, January 1999, p. 82.

In 2009, the Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of France stated:
“Modern” war disgusts us in the tragic consequences it has for civilians …
How could we not be horrified at the sight of bodies, atrociously maimed or burned; the bodies of women, men and children lying in the smoking ruins of their homes …

… [O]ne of the essential principles of international humanitarian law is that a distinction must be made at all times and in all circumstances between combatants and non-combatants … There are few conflicts in which that principle is fully respected.

In the face of situations in which civilians are deliberately targeted, the maintenance and the restoration of peace are constant challenges.
France is engaged in numerous peacekeeping operations under UN mandates. The purpose of several of them – first and foremost the European Union operation in eastern Chad and north-eastern Central African Republic – is to provide protection to innocent civilians.
Such protection must involve … the inclusion of the issues surrounding the protection of civilians in mandates for peacekeeping operations. 
France, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, “The Savaging of Humanitarian Law”, New York Times, 28 January 2009, pp. 1–2.

In 2009, the Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of France stated:
Violations of humanitarian law are ever increasing, as the current crises are unfortunately there to remind us, whether we are looking at Darfur, Somalia, Gaza, Sri Lanka or the Kivus. … The means and methods of warfare know no limitation or restraint, [such as] … proportionality in the use of force [and] use of the minimum violence necessary …
We must react! 
France, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, “International Humanitarian Law, an Imperative”, La Croix, 12 February 2009, p. 1.

Germany
In 1987, all parties in the German parliament condemned the Soviet “attacks against the civilian population, in particular against women and children” in Afghanistan. 
Germany, Lower House of Parliament, Proposal by the CDU/CSU, SPD, FDP and the Greens, 8 Jahre Krieg in Afghanistan, BT-Drucksache 11/1500, 9 December 1987, p. 1.

In an explanatory memorandum submitted to the German parliament in 1990 in the context of the ratification procedure of the Additional Protocols, the German government stated, with reference to Article 51(2) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, that the prohibition of direct attacks on individual civilians or the civilian population was an integral part of customary international law. 
Germany, Lower House of Parliament, Explanatory memorandum on the Additional Protocols to the Geneva Conventions, BT-Drucksache 11/6770, 22 March 1990, p. 112.

In 1991, in reply to a question in parliament, the German Minister of Foreign Affairs condemned “the continued military engagements of Turkish troops against the civilian population in Kurdish areas as a serious violation of international law”. 
Germany, Reply by the Government to a question in the Lower House of Parliament, Mißachtung der Menschenrechte in der Türkei, BT-Drucksache 12/1918, 14 January 1992, p. 3; see also p. 5; see also Reply by the Government to a question in the Lower House of Parliament, Demokratisierungsprozeß in Irakisch-Kurdistan, BT-Drucksache 12/3028, 13 July 1992, p. 2.

In 1991, the German Chancellor described the missile attack carried out by Iraq against populated areas as a “brutal act of terror”. 
Germany, Statement by the Chancellor, Helmut Kohl, 23 January 1991, Bulletin, No. 7, Presse- und Informationsamt der Bundesregierung, Bonn, 24 January 1991, p. 37.

In 1995, the German Minister of Foreign Affairs denounced the attack on the marketplace in Sarajevo in Bosnia and Herzegovina and stated: “The authors of this barbaric attack must be brought to account for their actions with all due consequences.” 
Michael Dynes and Ian Brodie, Sarajevo attack. Germany leads the condemnation of market massacre, Times Newspapers, 29 August 1995.

In 1995, the German Minister of Foreign Affairs stated that the restoration of Russian territorial integrity in Chechnya did not justify the conduct of the Russian army in Grozny, namely “the bombardment of civilians and the killing of so many innocent persons”. 
Germany, Statement by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Klaus Kinkel, 19 January 1995, Bulletin, No. 5, Presse- und Informationsamt der Bundesregierung, Bonn, 23 January 1995, p. 38.

In 2009, in reply to a Minor Interpellation in the Bundestag (Lower House of Parliament) titled “Investigation of serious violations of international humanitarian law in the recent Gaza war”, Germany’s Federal Government wrote:
9. How does the Federal Government assess the firing of rockets at towns and villages in Southern Israel by armed Palestinian groups in Gaza under international law?
Which specific provisions of international humanitarian law were violated by the Palestinian side?
The Federal Government condemns any act of violence and all acts of hostilities directed against civilians, as well as acts of terror. International humanitarian law prohibits attacks against the civilian population as such and against individual civilians. 
Germany, Lower House of Federal Parliament (Bundestag), Reply by the Federal Government to the Minor Interpellation by the Members Winfried Nachtwei, Kerstin Müller (Cologne), Jürgen Trittin, other Members and the Parliamentary Group BÜNDNIS 90/DIE GRÜNEN, BT-Drs. 16/12673, 20 April 2009, p. 4.

14. Can the Federal Government confirm or deny that ammunition with white phosphorous has been used in densely populated areas (e.g. Gaza City) and against civilian installations (e.g. the UN), and how does the Federal Government assess such use under international humanitarian law?
The Federal Government is aware of allegations that Israel has used phosphorous weapons in a way that violated international law. This is the subject of a number of investigations, including by Israel. The Federal Government has no information of its own on whether such weapons were used. Smoke ammunition which includes white phosphorus is not prohibited as such under international humanitarian law. But its use must comply with the general rules of international humanitarian law. Hence a direct use against civilians would be unlawful. 
Germany, Lower House of Federal Parliament (Bundestag), Reply by the Federal Government to the Minor Interpellation by the Members Winfried Nachtwei, Kerstin Müller (Cologne), Jürgen Trittin, other Members and the Parliamentary Group BÜNDNIS 90/DIE GRÜNEN, BT-Drs. 16/12673, 20 April 2009, p. 6.

In 2010, in reply to a Minor Interpellation in the Bundestag (Lower House of Parliament) titled “Killing of German nationals by a US drone attack – Intervention of the German judiciary”, Germany’s Federal Government wrote:
15. How does the Federal Government evaluate the legality of acts of targeted killing of persons within the context of international and non-international armed conflicts …?
International humanitarian law distinguishes in international and non-international armed conflicts between, on the one hand, armed forces opposing one another (international armed conflict) or armed forces and opposed organized armed groups (non-international [armed conflict]) and, on the other hand, civilians.
… [C]ivilians may in principle not be directly attacked. 
Germany, Lower House of Federal Parliament (Bundestag), Reply by the Federal Government to the Minor Interpellation by Members Jerzy Montag, Hans-Christian Ströbele, Omit Nouripour, further Members and the Parliamentary Group BÜNDNIS 90/DIE GRÜNEN, BT-Drs. 17/3916, 23 November 2010, p. 6.

Greece
In 2006, during a debate in the UN Security Council on protection of civilians in armed conflict, the Permanent Representative of Greece stated: “Deliberate violent attacks against civilians … can not be tolerated and should come to a halt.” 
Greece, Statement by the Permanent Representative, Security Council meeting on protection of civilians in armed conflict, 5 December 2006.

Iraq
The Report on the Practice of Iraq refers to several military communiqués issued by the General Command of the Iraqi armed forces during the Iran–Iraq War, one of which states: “Our Armed Forces have strictly adhered to the decision of the leadership by not shelling the purely civilian centers, and in accordance with the agreement made through the UN Secretary-General.” 
Report on the Practice of Iraq, 1998, Chapter 1.8, referring to Military Communiqué No. 1632, 27 October 1983, Military Communiqué No. 1502, 20 June 1984, Military Communiqué No. 1705, 18 January 1985 and Military Communiqué No. 1723, 26 January 1985.

Islamic Republic of Iran
In 1977, during a debate in the Sixth Committee of the UN General Assembly, the Islamic Republic of Iran noted that until the adoption of the two 1977 Additional Protocols, the prohibition on inflicting violence on civilians was not explicitly established. However, it concluded that the protection of non-combatants in armed conflicts was not a new phenomenon: “As early as 1621, the Code of Articles of King Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden had included principles on that subject which had since developed into a customary prohibition of violence against non-combatants.” 
Islamic Republic of Iran, Statement before the Sixth Committee of the UN General Assembly, UN Doc. A/C.6/32/SR.18, 14 October 1977, § 20.

In 1996, during a debate in the UN Security Council on the situation in Lebanon, the representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran condemned what he called the “cowardly, though savage, attacks against defenceless civilians”. 
Islamic Republic of Iran, Statement before the UN Security Council, UN Doc. S/PV.3653, 15 April 1996, p. 25.

Israel
In 2006, in a statement to the Knesset, Israel’s Minister of Defence stated:
I would like to state categorically: There is no Israeli pilot or commander who would issue an order to hurt uninvolved civilians. … I regret the outcome of the incident in Kafr Qana. We regret harming any adult or child, and we will continue to do everything to avoid it. We will not hesitate to investigate this incident [which] claimed so many lives, in order to learn how to prevent loss of life in the future. We are not doing this to make a good impression on anyone. We are doing it for ourselves, for our own moral conscience. 
Israel, Statement by Defence Minister Amir Peretz to the Knesset, 31 July 2006.

Israel
In 2007, the Government of Israel stated in a diplomatic note:
In the course of the conflict that it had initiated, Hizbullah’s operations entailed fundamental violations of international humanitarian law. Most specifically, it wilfully violated the principle of distinction, which obliges parties to a conflict to direct their attacks only against military objectives … Throughout the conflict, Hizbullah demonstrated cynical disregard for the lives of civilians, both on the Israeli side, where it targeted them, and on the Lebanese side ...
Deliberate attacks on civilian targets
Hizbullah, as a deliberate strategy, carried out missile attacks against Israeli population centers.
In the course of 34 days of fighting (July 12–August 14, 2006) approximately one third of the population of the State of Israel – about two million people − were placed within striking range of the thousands of missiles launched indiscriminately by Hizbullah. Missile attacks were launched against large cities such as Haifa, historic towns containing religious sites and archeological sites, such as Safed, Nazareth and Tiberias, farming communities such as Meron and villages such as Majdal Krum.
Some 4,000 missiles landed in Israeli territory, all over northern Israel, many in urban areas. In the course of the conflict, 43 Israeli civilians − Arabs and Jews alike − were killed, including seven children. Thousands of civilians required medical attention: 604 civilians were wounded (with various degrees of severity) and an additional 1,210 were treated for shock. The number of displaced people was estimated at between 350,000 to 500,000 while about 1,000,000 people were confined to bomb shelters.

Hizbullah not only violated humanitarian principles by deliberately targeting civilian areas, but also by using Katyusha missiles loaded with lethal anti-personnel ball bearings, intended to maximize civilian casualties.
It should be stressed that Hizbullah made no attempt to hide its intention to target civilians as a matter of policy. Indeed, the only concern expressed in the course of the conflict was that Arab Israelis should leave targeted areas so that only Jewish civilians would be killed and wounded.  
Israel, Israel’s War with Hizbullah. Preserving Humanitarian Principles While Combating Terrorism, Diplomatic Notes No. 1, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, April 2007, pp. 4–6.

In 2009, in a report on Israeli operations in Gaza between 27 December 2008 and 18 January 2009 (the “Gaza Operation”, also known as “Operation Cast Lead”), Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated:
[The Principle of Distinction] addresses only deliberate targeting of civilians, not incidental harm to civilians in the course of striking at legitimate military objectives. This understanding of customary international law was made explicit by numerous States in their ratifications of [the 1977] Additional Protocol I, and many other States have officially adopted this interpretation. 
Israel, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, The Operation in Gaza 27 December 2008–18 January 2009: Factual and Legal Aspects, 29 July 2009, § 97.
[footnotes in original omitted]
In 2009, in its initial response to the Report of the Fact Finding Mission on Gaza (the “Goldstone Report”), Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated:
The Report is rife with purported legal analysis and findings that Israeli forces committed “grave breaches” of international law and “war crimes”, without any recognition that such findings can only be based on affirmative evidence of intention to target civilians (as opposed to military objectives). In other words, there must have been intent to cause harm to civilians, as distinct from the knowledge that civilians may be harmed as an unintended consequence of pursuing a military goal. 
Israel, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Initial Response to the Report of the Fact Finding Mission on Gaza, 24 September 2009, § 24.
[footnote in original omitted]
In January 2010, in an update of its July 2009 report on Israeli operations in Gaza between 27 December 2008 and 18 January 2009, Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated:
… Under the Law of Armed Conflict, the occurrence of … injury, or even death of civilians, during an operational activity does not necessarily indicate nor even imply criminal misconduct. Rather, criminal responsibility for violation of the Law of Armed Conflict requires evidence that military personnel intended to harm civilians or clearly foresaw that excessive harm to civilians would result, when balanced against the anticipated military advantage. 
Israel, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Gaza Operation Investigations: An Update, 29 January 2010, § 51.
[emphasis in original; footnotes in original omitted]
In July 2010, in a second update of its July 2009 report on Israeli operations in Gaza between 27 December 2008 and 18 January 2009, Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated: “IDF [Israeli Defense Forces] orders and doctrine strictly prohibit the intentional targeting of civilians”. 
Israel, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Gaza Operation Investigations: Second Update, 19 July 2010, § 58.

Jordan
In 1996, during a debate in the UN Security Council on the situation in Lebanon, Jordan considered that, while the use of force and violence as a means to solve political problems should always be condemned, this proved particularly true when force was employed against innocent civilians and civilian installations. 
Jordan, Statement before the UN Security Council, UN Doc. S/PV.3653, 15 April 1996, p. 27.

The Report on the Practice of Jordan states that there are no reported incidents of Jordanian troops resorting to direct attacks on civilians. It refers to Islam’s prohibition of direct attacks on civilians, that is, in the event of the use of force and in case of armed conflicts, it is not permissible to kill non-combatants, such as old men, women and children. 
Report on the Practice of Jordan, 1997, Chapter 1.4 and Answers to additional questions on Chapter 1.1.

Kazakhstan
In 1996, in a statement concerning military operations in Lebanon, Kazakhstan condemned the “use of armed force with a view to killing the civilian population and destroying civilian facilities”. 
Kazakhstan, Statement by Kazakhstan, annexed to Letter dated 19 April 1996 to the UN Secretary-General, UN Doc. S/1996/308, 19 April 1996.

Lebanon
The Report on the Practice of Lebanon refers to a 1996 report by the Lebanese Ministry of Justice which stated that Israel had committed serious violations of the Geneva Conventions by “engaging civilians”. 
Report on the Practice of Lebanon, 1998, Chapter 1.4, referring to Report by the Lebanese Ministry of Justice on possibilities for legal action against Israel, 12 April 1996.

The Report on the Practice of Lebanon refers to a statement by the General Director of the Ministry of Justice in 1997 in which he stated that he considered the bombardment of civilians a war crime. 
Report on the Practice of Lebanon, 1998, Chapter 6.5, referring to Statement by the General Director of the Lebanese Ministry of Justice, al Raii al ordonia, 23 December 1997.

Malaysia
On the basis of interviews with members of the Malaysian armed forces and the Ministry of Home Affairs, the Report on the Practice of Malaysia notes that during the communist insurgency, the security forces were barred from directly attacking civilians. 
Report on the Practice of Malaysia, 1997, Interviews with members of the Malaysian armed forces and Ministry of Home Affairs, Chapter 1.4.

Mexico
At the CDDH, Mexico stated that it believed Article 46 of the draft Additional Protocol I (now Article 51) to be so essential that it “cannot be the subject of any reservations whatsoever since these would be inconsistent with the aim and purpose of Protocol I and undermine its basis”. 
Mexico, Statement at the CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.41, 26 May 1977, p. 193.

In 2010, during a debate in the UN Security Council on the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question, the permanent representative of Mexico stated:
We are dismayed and surprised by the grave events that took place along the coasts of the Mediterranean off the Gaza Strip today. We condemn in the strongest terms the armed attack carried out by the armed forces of Israel in international waters against the flotilla of civilian boats seeking to carry humanitarian aid to the inhabitants of the Gaza Strip. …
Attacks in armed conflict situations directed specifically against civilians … are serious violations of the norms and principles of international humanitarian law, in accordance with the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and their Additional Protocols of … [1977]. They also constitute international crimes. 
Mexico, Statement before the UN Security Council, 6325th meeting, UN Doc. S/PV.6325, 31 May 2010, pp. 6–7.

Netherlands
In 1994, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands described the attack on the marketplace in Sarajevo as a “horrific act” and stated that the civilian population in the safe areas of the former Yugoslavia should be granted more protection against attacks that served no military purpose and which could only be qualified as terror tactics. The Minister of Defence also vigorously condemned the attacks on the safe areas in Bosnia and Herzegovina as a very serious violation of fundamental human rights. 
Netherlands, Lower House of Parliament, Letter from the Minister of Foreign Affairs, 11 February 1994, Handelingen der Tweede Kamer, 1993–1994 Session, Doc. 22 181, No. 72; Letter from the Minister of Defence, 27 July 1995, Handelingen der Tweede Kamer, 1994–1995 Session, 22 181, No. 109.

In its written statement submitted to the ICJ in the Nuclear Weapons case in 1995, the Netherlands stated: “The general principles of international humanitarian law in armed conflict also apply to the use of nuclear weapons … in particular … the prohibition on making the civilian population as such the target of an attack.” 
Netherlands, Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, 16 June 1995, § 32; see also Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons (WHO) case, 6 June 1994, § 39.

Nigeria
The Report on the Practice of Nigeria confirms the existence of a norm of a customary nature prohibiting direct attacks against civilians and cites Nigeria’s Operational Code of Conduct in this respect. The report also states that, according to Nigeria’s opinio juris, the prohibition of direct attacks against civilians is part of customary international law. 
Report on the Practice of Nigeria, 1997, Chapter 1.4.

Norway
In 2008, in a statement before the Sixth Committee of the UN General Assembly on the status of the 1977 Additional Protocols – made on behalf of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden – the representative of Sweden stated: “We call upon all states and entities to respect the existing body of international humanitarian law, particularly with regard to the obligations to protect civilians.” 
Norway, Statement before the Sixth Committee of the UN General Assembly by the representative of Sweden made on behalf of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden on “Item 76: Status of the Protocols Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and relating to the protection of victims of armed conflicts”, 23 October 2008.

In 2009, in a statement on Gaza before the UN General Assembly, the Permanent Representative of Norway stated:
Hamas’ launching of rockets targeting civilians in Israel must stop.
Israel’s shelling of Gaza must stop.
International humanitarian law is crystal clear: civilians must be protected. 
Norway, Statement by the Permanent Representative of Norway before the UN General Assembly during a debate on Gaza, 16 January 2009.

In 2010, in an opening address at a Workshop on International Humanitarian Law and the Protection of Civilians, Norway’s Minister of Foreign Affairs stated:
The prime aim of international humanitarian law is precisely to protect civilians and all persons who do not, or no longer, take direct part in hostilities, from the risks associated with armed violence.

To reclaim the protection of civilians in armed conflict is therefore – first and foremost – a matter of reclaiming respect for international humanitarian law in practice.

The law of armed conflict offers a minimum of protection to civilians in times of emergency, while at the same time requiring that parties to conflict distinguish between members of the enemy’s armed opposition and civilians, although this may be hard at times.

We expect every civilian to be able to enjoy protection during armed conflict, regardless of the political motivation that lies behind a decision to resort to armed force. 
Norway, Opening Address by the Minister of Foreign Affairs at a Workshop on International Humanitarian Law and the Protection of Civilians, 8 November 2010.

Pakistan
In 1996, during a debate in the UN Security Council on the situation in Lebanon, Pakistan condemned “the targeting and killing of civilian populations”. 
Pakistan, Statement before the UN Security Council, UN Doc. S/PV.3653, 15 April 1996, p. 29.

The Report on the Practice of Pakistan states that it is Pakistan’s opinio juris that direct attacks on civilians are prohibited. 
Report on the Practice of Pakistan, 1998, Chapter 1.4.

Republic of Korea
In 1996, during a debate in the UN Security Council on the situation in Lebanon, the Republic of Korea called upon both parties to respect immediately the non-combatant status of civilians. 
Republic of Korea, Statement before the UN Security Council, UN Doc. S/PV.3653, 15 April 1996, p. 11.

The Report on the Practice of the Republic of Korea states that it is the Republic of Korea’s opinio juris that the prohibition of direct attacks against civilians is part of customary international law. 
Report on the Practice of the Republic of Korea, 1997, Chapter 1.4.

Russian Federation
In 2008, in a statement before the UN Security Council on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the permanent representative of the Russian Federation stated:
The protection of civilians must be the highest priority for Governments involved in conflicts. We emphasize that all parties to armed conflict bear responsibility for ensuring the security of civilians.
We vigorously condemn … deliberate attacks on civilians … which is a violation of international humanitarian law.

The United Nations must rapidly and effectively respond to incidents of violence against civilians … during armed conflict. 
Russian Federation, Statement at a UN Security Council meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, 5898th meeting, 27 May 2008.

In 2009, in a statement on before the UN Security Council on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the permanent representative of the Russian Federation stated:
We strongly condemn deliberate attacks on and the killing of civilians … which is a gross violation of international humanitarian law.

Once again, just a few days ago, 17 Afghan civilians, including women and children, were killed during a coalition operation in eastern Afghanistan. We underscore the responsibility of all parties, including the multinational forces, to ensure the security of civilians and comply strictly with the norms of international humanitarian law. 
Russian Federation, Statement at a UN Security Council meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, 6066th meeting, 14 January 2009.

In 2010, in a statement before the UN Security Council on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the permanent representative of the Russian Federation stated: “We resolutely condemn both wilful attacks against civilians and civilian loss of life … which constitute serious violations of international humanitarian law.” 
Russian Federation, Statement at a UN Security Council meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, 6354th meeting, 7 July 2010.

Rwanda
The Report on the Practice of Rwanda states that attacks against civilians are prohibited according to the practice and the opinio juris of Rwanda and considers that this prohibition is a norm of customary international law binding on all States. 
Report on the Practice of Rwanda, 1997, Chapter 1.4.

Saudi Arabia
In 2004, in its second periodic report to the Committee on the Rights of the Child, Saudi Arabia stated: “The laws in force in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia … [prohibit] the shelling and bombardment of civilian populations.” 
Saudi Arabia, Second periodic report to the Committee on the Rights of the Child, 21 April 2005, UN Doc. CRC/C/136/Add.1, submitted 12 November 2004, § 275.

Slovenia
In 1992, in a note verbale addressed to the UN Secretary-General, Slovenia expressed its readiness to provide information concerning violations of IHL committed by members of the Yugoslav army during the 10-day conflict with Slovenia, including “violences concerning killings and injuries of civilians”. 
Slovenia, Note verbale dated 5 November 1992 to the UN Secretary-General, UN Doc. S/24789, 9 November 1992, p. 2.

Somalia
In 2011, in its report to the Human Rights Council, Somalia stated: “The Government forces are also bound to respect customary IHL rules relating to the prohibited methods and means of warfare including … the prohibition of intentional … attacks against civilians”. 
Somalia, Report to the Human Rights Council, 11 April 2011, UN Doc. A/HRC/WG.6/11/SOM/1, § 76.

Spain
In 1988, Spain protested against direct attacks on the civilian population during the Iran–Iraq War. 
Spain, Comunicado del Gobierno expresando su preocupación por el conflicto bélico entre Irán e Irak, 15 March 1988, Actividades, Textos y Documentos de la Política Exterior Española, Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores, Oficina de Información Diplomática, Madrid, 1988, p. 669.
The Report on the Practice of Spain considers that, in general,
the Spanish Government has tended to condemn all attacks directed against the civilian population … whether the armed conflict was internal or international. This was its position in the civil war in Liberia, the Gulf War, the conflict in the former Yugoslavia, the civil war in Sudan, the war in Chechnya, and the Turkish attacks against the Kurds in northern Iraq. 
Report on the Practice of Spain, 1998, Chapter 1.4.

Sri Lanka
In 2008, in its initial report to the Committee on the Rights of the Child under the 2000 Optional Protocol on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict, Sri Lanka stated:
36. The former Special Representative of the [UN] Secretary-General on Children and Armed Conflict Mr. Olara Otunnu was invited by the Government to visit Sri Lanka in May 1998, to add strength to the advocacy campaign against child recruitment … The LTTE [Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam] made the following commitments in relation to children in armed conflict to Mr. Otunnu during his meeting with the LTTE[:]

(e) The LTTE … agreed to review its strategies and tactics of targeting civilian population contrary to humanitarian laws.
37. These commitments were not implemented by the LTTE. 
Sri Lanka, Initial report to the Committee on the Rights of the Child under the Optional Protocol on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict, 15 February 2010, UN Doc. CRC/C/OPAC/LKA/1, submitted 16 June 2008, §§ 36(e) and 37.
[footnote in original omitted]
Sweden
In its written statement submitted to the ICJ in the Nuclear Weapons case in 1995, Sweden stated: “Under the principle of distinction, an attack on a civilian population or civilian property is prohibited.” 
Sweden, Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, 20 June 1995, p. 3; see also Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons (WHO) case, 2 June 1994, p. 3.

In 2003, in an answer to a written question in Parliament regarding the situation in Colombia, Sweden’s Minister for Foreign Affairs stated:
I find it extraordinarily serious that all three major illegal armed organisations, i.e. FARC-EP [Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia-Ejercito del Pueblo], ELN [Ejército de Liberación Nacional] and the paramilitary groups gathered around AUC [Autodefensas Unidas de Colombia], have committed and are committing serious assaults on the civilian population, in contravention of international humanitarian law. 
Sweden, Answer by the Minister for Foreign Affairs to written question 2002/03:592 on Colombia, in Parliament, 7 March 2003.

In 2005, in an answer to a question in Parliament regarding the parliamentary election in Chechnya, Sweden’s Minister for Foreign Affairs stated: “All violence targeted at civilians is indefensible.” 
Sweden, Answer by the Minister for Foreign Affairs to a Parliamentary interpellation regarding the parliamentary election in Chechnya, 13–26 January 2005, Parliamentary Protocol 2005/06:62, § 3, Anf. 8.

In 2007, with regard to the situation in Gaza, the Swedish Ministers for Foreign Affairs and for International Development Cooperation stated: “Attacks against civilians are in contravention of international law.” 
Sweden, Statement by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and the Minister for International Development Cooperation, 1 November 2007.

In 2007, in a speech given at the EU Africa Summit, the Prime Minister of Sweden stated: “No quest for stability can justify … the targeting of civilians in conflict. Human suffering and violations against civilians must come to an end in places like Darfur and Somalia.”  
Sweden, Speech by the Prime Minister of Sweden at the EU Africa Summit, Lisbon, 8 December 2007.

Uganda
In 1996, during a debate in the UN Security Council regarding the conflict in Burundi, Uganda condemned “in the strongest terms the killing of innocent and unarmed civilians” and demanded that “both parties to the conflict halt immediately the killings and massacres of innocent civilians”. 
Uganda, Statement before the UN Security Council, UN Doc. S/PV.3692, 28 August 1996, p. 13.

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
In 1938, during a debate in the House of Commons, the UK Prime Minister listed among rules of international law applicable to warfare on land, at sea and from the air the rule: “It is against international law to bomb civilians as such and to make deliberate attacks upon civilian populations.” 
United Kingdom, House of Commons, Statement by the Prime Minister, Sir Neville Chamberlain, 21 June 1938, Hansard, Vol. 337, col. 937.

At the CDDH, the United Kingdom voted in favour of Article 46 of the draft Additional Protocol I (now Article 51), describing its first three paragraphs as containing a “valuable reaffirmation of existing customary rules of international law designed to protect civilians”. 
United Kingdom, Statement at the CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.41, 26 May 1977, p. 164, § 119.

A training video on IHL produced by the UK Ministry of Defence illustrates the rule that military operations must not be directed against civilians. 
United Kingdom, Ministry of Defence, Training Video: The Geneva Conventions, 1986, Report on UK Practice, 1997, Chapter 1.3.

In its written statement submitted to the ICJ in the Nuclear Weapons case in 1995, the United Kingdom stated: “It is a well established principle of customary international law that the civilian population and individual civilians are not a legitimate target in their own right.” 
United Kingdom, Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, 16 June 1995, § 3.67.

In 2006, in reply to questions in the House of Commons concerning, inter alia, the treatment of the Karen people in Myanmar, the UK Minister of State for Trade, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, stated: “We condemn the attacks carried out by the Burmese army on civilians in northern and western Karen State.” 
United Kingdom, House of Commons, Written answer by the Minister of State for Trade, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Hansard, 16 May 2006, Vol. 446, Written Answers, col. 893W.

In 2007, in a written answer to a question in the House of Lords concerning civilian casualties in Afghanistan, the UK Government Spokesman for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office wrote:
The UK joins the Agency Co-ordinating Body for Afghan Relief in condemning the actions of armed insurgents causing civilian casualties … International forces, including UK forces, seek at all times to avoid loss of civilian life. The targeting process, weapons selection, doctrine, training and rules of engagement are all in line with international humanitarian and human rights law and the law of armed conflict. 
United Kingdom, House of Lords, Written answer by the Government Spokesman for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Hansard, 5 July 2007, Vol. 693, Written Answers, col. WA183.

In 2009, in response to a question by a Member of the House of Commons, the UK Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs wrote: “Rocket attacks by Palestinian militants targeted at innocent civilians in southern Israel constitute a breach of international humanitarian law.” 
United Kingdom, House of Commons, Written Statement by the Secretary of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Hansard, 29 October 2009, Vol. 498, Written Statements, col. 507W. See also House of Commons, Written Statement by the Secretary of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Hansard, 2 November 2009, Vol. 498, Written Statements, col. 664W.

The UK Government Strategy on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict (2010) states:
Protection of civilians in armed conflict matters from a legal perspective, because the UK has specific obligations concerning the protection of civilians in situations where it is involved in military action. International humanitarian law (IHL) provides that civilians shall enjoy general protection from the effects of armed conflict [and] protects civilians from being the object of attack. … [C]ivilians must not be the target of physical attacks. 
United Kingdom, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Government Strategy on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict, March 2010, p. 2.
[emphasis in original]
United States of America
On 1 September 1939, the US President wrote to the governments of France, Germany, Italy, Poland and the United Kingdom asking “every government which may be engaged in hostilities publicly to affirm its determination that its armed forces shall in no event, and under no circumstances, undertake the bombardment from the air of civilian populations”. 
United States, Letter from Franklin D. Roosevelt to the governments of France, Germany, Italy, Poland and the United Kingdom, 1 September 1939, reprinted in Eugene M. Emme (ed.), The Impact of Airpower: National Security and World Politics, Van Nostrand, Princeton, 1959, p. 68.

In 1972, the General Counsel of the US Department of Defense considered that the prohibition on launching attacks against the civilian population was a general principle of the law of armed conflict which was declaratory of existing customary international law. 
United States, Letter from J. Fred Buzhardt, General Counsel of the Department of Defense, to Senator Edward Kennedy, Chairman of the Subcommittee on Refugees of the Committee on the Judiciary, 22 September 1972, AJIL, Vol. 67, 1973, pp. 122–124.

In 1974, at the Lucerne Conference of Government Experts on Weapons which may Cause Unnecessary Suffering or have Indiscriminate Effects, the head of the US delegation stated: “The law of war also prohibits attacks on civilians and civilian objects as such. This unchallenged principle is that civilians (and persons hors de combat) whether in occupied territory or elsewhere must not be made the object of attack.” 
United States, Statement of 25 September 1974 at the Conference of Government Experts on Weapons which may Cause Unnecessary Suffering or have Indiscriminate Effects, Lucerne, 24 September–18 October 1974, reprinted in Arthur W. Rovine, Digest of United States Practice in International Law, 1974, Department of State Publication 8809, Washington, D.C., 1975, p. 713.

In 1991, in a diplomatic note to Iraq concerning operations in the Gulf War, the United States stated: “The civilian population, as such, as well as individual civilians, should not be the object of attack.” 
United States, Department of State, Diplomatic Note to Iraq, Washington, 19 January 1991, annexed to Letter dated 21 January 1991 to the President of the UN Security Council, UN Doc. S/22122, 21 January 1991, p. 2.

In 1991, in a report submitted to the UN Security Council on operations in the Gulf War, the United States stated: “Over 52,000 coalition air sorties have been carried out since hostilities began on 16 January. These sorties were not flown against any civilian or religious targets or against the Iraqi civilian population.” 
United States, Letter dated 8 February 1991 to the President of the UN Security Council, UN Doc. S/22216, 13 February 1991, p. 1.

In 1992, in its final report to Congress on the conduct of the Gulf War, the US Department of Defense stated: “As a general principle, the law of war prohibits … the direct, intentional attack of civilians not taking part in hostilities”. 
United States, Department of Defense, Final Report to Congress on the Conduct of the Persian Gulf War, 10 April 1992, Appendix O, The Role of the Law of War, ILM, Vol. 31, 1992, p. 622.

In several reports submitted in 1992 to the UN Security Council pursuant to paragraph 5 of Security Council Resolution 771 (1992) on grave breaches of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV committed in the former Yugoslavia, the United States described “deliberate attacks on non-combatants” perpetrated by the parties to the conflict. 
United States, Former Yugoslavia: Grave Breaches of the Fourth Geneva Convention, annexed to Letter dated 22 September 1992 to the UN Secretary-General, UN Doc. S/24583, 23 September 1992, p. 8; Former Yugoslavia: Grave Breaches of the Fourth Geneva Convention (Third Submission), annexed to Letter dated 5 November to the UN Secretary-General, UN Doc. S/24791, 10 November 1992, p. 19; Former Yugoslavia: Grave Breaches of the Fourth Geneva Convention (Fourth Submission), annexed to Letter dated 7 December 1992 to the UN Secretary-General, UN Doc. S/24918, 8 December 1992, p. 14.

In its written statement submitted to the ICJ in the Nuclear Weapons case in 1995, the United States stated: “The law of armed conflict precludes making civilians the object of attack as such.” 
United States, Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, 20 June 1995, p. 22.

According to the Report on US Practice: “It is the opinio juris of the United States that it is prohibited to launch attacks against the civilian population as such.” 
Report on US Practice, 1997, Chapter 1.4.

Viet Nam
In 2008, during a debate in the UN Security Council on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the representative of Viet Nam stated that “parties to armed conflict should comply with the [principle] … of humanitarian law relating to distinction … and refrain from exerting measures against civilians”. 
Viet Nam, Statement before the UN Security Council during a debate on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, 27 May 2008, p. 14.

Yugoslavia, Federal Republic of
The Report on the Practice of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia states:
There are many examples of direct attacks on civilians … which both parties to the conflict in Croatia in 1991 and 1992 pointed at. The mixed nature of the conflict, being both internal and international, contributed to this as well. Both parties referred to these incidents as violations of international humanitarian law. The fact that the parties did not question this norm [prohibiting attacks against civilians] when speaking about the behaviour of the opposite side is a clear indication of their opinio juris and a confirmation that such attacks were considered prohibited. 
Report on the Practice of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, 1997, Chapter 1.4, referring to Vesna Bosanac, The Tragedy of the Civilian Population of the Commune of Vukovar during 1991 – A Testimony, in Zvonimir Šeparovic (ed.), Documenta Croatica, Croatian History and Identity and the War against Croatia, p. 114, and Miodrag Starcevic and Nikola Petkovic (eds.), Croatia ‘91 – Violence and Crime against the Law , pp. 67–69.

In its counter-memorial submitted to the ICJ in the Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide case (Bosnia and Herzegovina v. Serbia and Montenegro) in 1997, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia stated:
In [the Applicant’s] Memorial … it is said: “The Council also addressed what is perhaps the most direct manifestation of the policy of genocide: the military attacks directed against civilians, including the bombardment and shelling of civilian centres and even concentrations of displaced persons, and the preclusion of humanitarian aid deliveries as a means of warfare against civilians.” The Respondent disagrees with the Applicant on the legal qualification of the said acts as genocide. Military attacks directed against civilians are certainly prohibited under the 1949 Geneva Conventions but they cannot be qualified as genocide. In order to be qualified as genocide they have to be directed against members of a group protected under the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide and there must be a genocidal intent. 
Yugoslavia, Federal Republic of, Counter-memorial submitted to the ICJ, Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide case (Bosnia and Herzegovina v. Serbia and Montenegro), 23 July 1997, p. 84, § 1.3.7.6.

In the Legality of Use of Force cases in 1999, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia initiated proceedings before the ICJ against ten NATO member States (Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, United Kingdom and United States) on the grounds, inter alia, that:
- by taking part in attacks on civilian targets, [the respective States had] acted against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in breach of [their] obligation to spare the civilian population, civilians and civilian objects. 
Yugoslavia, Federal Republic of, Applications instituting proceedings submitted to the ICJ, Legality of Use of Force cases (Yugoslavia v. Belgium; Yugoslavia v. Canada; Yugoslavia v. France; Yugoslavia v. Germany; Yugoslavia v. Italy; Yugoslavia v. Netherlands; Yugoslavia v. Portugal; Yugoslavia v. Spain; Yugoslavia v. United Kingdom; Yugoslavia v. United States of America), 29 April 1999.

by attacks on civilian targets, and by inflicting damage, injuries and losses to civilians and civilian objects, [the respective States had] acted against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in breach of [their] obligation to spare the civilian population, civilians and civilian objects. 
Yugoslavia, Federal Republic, Memorial submitted to the ICJ, Legality of Use of Force cases (Yugoslavia v. Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal and United Kingdom), 5 January 2000, p. 351.

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UN Security Council
In a resolution adopted in 1985, the UN Security Council called on “all concerned to end acts of violence against the civilian population in Lebanon and, in particular, in and around Palestinian refugee camps”. 
UN Security Council, Res. 564, 31 May 1985, § 1, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1992, the UN Security Council expressed grave alarm at continuing reports of widespread violations of IHL in the former Yugoslavia and especially in Bosnia and Herzegovina, including reports of “deliberate attacks on non-combatants”. 
UN Security Council, Res. 771, 13 August 1992, preamble, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1992, the UN Security Council expressed grave alarm at continuing reports of widespread violations of IHL in Somalia, including reports of “deliberate attacks on non-combatants”. 
UN Security Council, Res. 794, 3 December 1992, preamble, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1993, the UN Security Council stated that it was deeply alarmed by the continued armed attacks and deliberate bombing of innocent civilians by Serb paramilitary units in Bosnia and Herzegovina. 
UN Security Council, Res. 819, 16 April 1993, preamble, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1993 on the seizure of the district of Agdam in Azerbaijan, the UN Security Council condemned “all hostile actions in the region, in particular attacks on civilians and bombardments of inhabited areas”. 
UN Security Council, Res. 853, 29 July 1993, § 2, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1994, the UN Security Council strongly condemned a “massacre” in Hebron in which more than 50 Palestinian civilians died and several hundred others were injured. The Security Council called for measures to be taken to guarantee the safety and protection of Palestinian civilians throughout the occupied territories. 
UN Security Council, Res. 904, 18 March 1994, preamble and § 3, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1994, the UN Security Council stated that it was “appalled at the … large-scale violence in Rwanda, which has resulted in the death of thousands of innocent civilians, including women and children,” and condemned “the ongoing violence in Rwanda, particularly in Kigali, which endangers the lives and safety of the civilian population”. 
UN Security Council, Res. 912, 21 April 1994, preamble and § 4, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1994, the UN Security Council condemned all attacks directed against the civilian population in Bosnia and Herzegovina. 
UN Security Council, Res. 913, 22 April 1994, preamble, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted on 17 May 1994, the UN Security Council vigorously condemned the violence that had exploded in Rwanda and in particular the reported killings of numerous civilians. 
UN Security Council, Res. 918, 17 May 1994, preamble, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1994, the UN Security Council specifically condemned, among other violations of IHL, the widespread killings of civilians by the factions in Liberia. 
UN Security Council, Res. 950, 21 October 1994, § 7, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1995, the UN Security Council condemned all attacks against persons in the refugee camps near the Rwandan borders. It referred to these acts as “violations of international humanitarian law” and stated that effective measures had to be taken to bring to justice those responsible for such crimes. 
UN Security Council, Res. 978, 27 February 1995, preamble and § 4, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1995, the UN Security Council expressed its concern about attacks against civilians in the Gali region of Georgia. 
UN Security Council, Res. 993, 12 May 1995, preamble, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1995, the UN Security Council condemned the “increasing attacks on the civilian population by Bosnian Serb forces”. 
UN Security Council, Res. 998, 16 June 1995, preamble, voting record 13-0-2.

In a resolution adopted in 1995, the UN Security Council expressed its deep concern at the continuing inter- and intra-factional fighting in parts of Liberia, which had further worsened the plight of the civilian population, and called upon combatants to respect the human rights of the civilian population and to respect IHL. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1001, 30 June 1995, preamble, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1995, the UN Security Council expressed its deep concern at reports of serious violations of IHL and human rights in Croatia and mentioned, inter alia, the killings of civilians. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1019, 9 November 1995, preamble and § 1, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1996, the UN Security Council condemned the armed attacks against civilians in Liberia and demanded that such hostile acts cease forthwith. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1041, 29 January 1996, § 4, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1996, the UN Security Council condemned in the strongest terms all acts of violence perpetrated against civilians and refugees during the conflict in Burundi. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1049, 5 March 1996, § 2, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1996, following the shelling of a UNIFIL site in Lebanon, which resulted in heavy losses among civilians, the UN Security Council stressed the need for all concerned to respect fully the rules of IHL regarding the protection of civilians and to respect the safety and security of civilians. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1052, 18 April 1996, preamble and § 4, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1996, the UN Security Council expressed its “deep concern about the tragic events … which resulted in a high number of deaths and injuries among the Palestinian civilians” and asked that both the security and the “safety and protection” of this population be ensured. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1073, 28 September 1996, preamble, voting record: 14-0-1.

In a resolution adopted in 1996, the UN Security Council expressed its deep concern at the intensification of the conflict in Afghanistan, which had caused numerous victims among the civilian population, and emphasized the need to stop a new rise in civilian casualties. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1076, 22 October 1996, preamble, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1996, the UN Security Council condemned “the terrorist acts and other acts of violence” causing the deaths of civilians in Tajikistan. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1089, 13 December 1996, § 4, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1998, the UN Security Council condemned “the continuing violence in Rwanda, including the massacre of civilians”. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1161, 9 April 1998, preamble, voting record: 15-0-0.

In two resolutions adopted in 1998, the UN Security Council demanded that the União Nacional para Independência Total de Angola (UNITA) put an immediate end to attacks against the civilian population.  
UN Security Council, Res. 1173, 12 June 1998, § 5; Res. 1180, 29 June 1998, § 5, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1998, the UN Security Council condemned “the continued resistance of remnants of the ousted junta and members of the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) to the authority of the legitimate government and the violence they are perpetrating against the civilian population of Sierra Leone”. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1181, 13 July 1998, § 1, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1999 on the protection of civilians in armed conflicts, the UN Security Council strongly condemned “the deliberate targeting of civilians in situations of armed conflict” and called on all parties “to put an end to such practices”. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1265, 17 September 1999, § 2, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 2000 on the protection of civilians in armed conflicts, the UN Security Council reaffirmed “its strong condemnation of the deliberate targeting of civilians or other protected persons in situations of armed conflict” and called upon all parties to put an end to such practices. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1296, 19 April 2000, § 2, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 2004 on a report of the Secretary-General on the Sudan, the UN Security Council reiterated “its grave concern at the ongoing humanitarian crisis and widespread human rights violations, including continued attacks on civilians that are placing the lives of hundreds of thousands at risk”. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1556, 30 July 2004, preamble, voting record: 13-0-2.

In a resolution adopted in 2004 on the situation in Côte d’Ivoire, the UN Security Council strongly recalled “the obligations of all Ivoirian parties, the Government of Côte d’Ivoire as well as the Forces Nouvelles, to refrain from any violence against civilians, including against foreign citizens”. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1572, 15 November 2004, preamble, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 2004 on reports of the Secretary-General on the Sudan, the UN Security Council demanded that “Government and rebel forces and all other armed groups immediately cease all violence and attacks, including abduction”. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1574, 19 November 2004, § 11, voting record: 15-0-0..

In a resolution adopted in 2005 on reports of the Secretary-General on the Sudan, the UN Security Council recalled “the demands, in resolutions 1556 (2004), 1564 (2004), and 1574 (2004), that all parties to the conflict in Darfur refrain from any violence against civilians”. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1590, 24 March 2005, preamble, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 2006 on reports of the Secretary-General on the Sudan, the UN Security Council strongly condemned “the activities of militias and armed groups such as the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), which continue to attack civilians and commit human rights abuses in the Sudan”. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1663, 24 March 2006, § 7, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 2006 on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the UN Security Council:
3. Recalls that deliberately targeting civilians and other protected persons as such in situations of armed conflict is a flagrant violation of international humanitarian law, reiterates its condemnation in the strongest terms of such practices, and demands that all parties immediately put an end to such practices;

11. Calls upon all parties concerned to ensure that all peace processes, peace agreements and post-conflict recovery and reconstruction planning have regard for the special needs of women and children and include specific measures for the protection of civilians including (i) the cessation of attacks on civilians. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1674, 28 April 2006, §§ 3 and 11, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 2006 on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the UN Security Council:
Emphasizing that there are existing prohibitions under international humanitarian law against attacks intentionally directed against civilians, as such, which in situations of armed conflict constitute war crimes, and recalling the need for States to end impunity for such criminal acts,

4. Reaffirms its condemnation of all incitements to violence against civilians in situations of armed conflict, further reaffirms the need to bring to justice, in accordance with applicable international law, individuals who incite such violence, and indicates its willingness, when authorizing missions, to consider, where appropriate, steps in response to media broadcast inciting genocide, crimes against humanity and serious violations of international humanitarian law;
5. Recalls its demand that all parties to an armed conflict comply fully with the obligations applicable to them under international law related to the protection of civilians in armed conflict, including journalists, media professionals and associated personnel;
6. Urges States and all other parties to an armed conflict to do their utmost to prevent violations of international humanitarian law against civilians, including journalists, media professionals and associated personnel. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1738, 23 December 2006, preamble and §§ 4–6, voting record: 15-0-0.

In a resolution adopted in 2007 on reports of the Secretary-General on the Sudan, the UN Security Council:
condemning continued violent attacks on civilians, including displaced persons, refugees, women, children, the elderly and humanitarian workers; and reiterating in the strongest terms the need for all parties to the conflict in Darfur, including non-parties to the Darfur Peace Agreement, to put an end to the violence and atrocities in Darfur and the region. 
UN Security Council, Res. 1755, 30 April 2007, preamble, voting record: 15-0-0.

In 1992, in a statement by its President on the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the UN Security Council condemned reported attacks by Serb militia against civilians fleeing from the city of Jajce “which constitute grave violations of international humanitarian law” and demanded that “all such attacks cease immediately”. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/24744, 30 October 1992.

In 1993, in a statement by its President on the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the UN Security Council deplored the “killing of innocent civilians” by Serb paramilitary units and required that all acts of violence directed against civilians cease. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/25361, 3 March 1993, p. 1.

In 1993, in a statement by its President, the UN Security Council voiced its shock and sadness at and strong condemnation of the senseless killing of innocent civilians near Harbel in Liberia. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/25918, 9 June 1993.

In 1993, in a statement by its President regarding the massacre perpetrated by Croatian soldiers in the village of Stupni Do, the UN Security Council reiterated its unmitigated condemnation of acts of violence against the civilian population. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/26661, 18 October 1993.

On 7 April 1994, in a statement by its President on the situation in Rwanda, the UN Security Council condemned the killing of many civilians as “horrific attacks” and urged “respect for the safety and security of the civilian population and of the foreign communities living in Rwanda”. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/1994/16, 7 April 1994, p. 1.

On 30 April 1994, in a statement by its President concerning the massacres in Rwanda, the UN Security Council stated:
The Security Council is appalled at continuing reports of the slaughter of innocent civilians in Kigali and other parts of Rwanda, and reported preparations for further massacres … The Security Council condemns all these breaches of international humanitarian law in Rwanda, particularly those perpetrated against the civilian population, and recalls that persons who instigate or participate in such acts are individually responsible. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/1994/21, 30 April 1994, p. 1.

In 1995, in a statement by its President, the UN Security Council condemned “any shelling of civilian targets” in and around the Republic of Croatia and requested that “no military action be taken against civilians”. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/1995/38, 4 August 1995, p. 1.

In 1997, in a statement by its President on the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the UN Security Council expressed its particular concern at “reports that refugees in the east of the country are being systematically killed” and called for “an immediate end to all violence against refugees in the country”. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/1997/31, 29 May 1997, p. 2.

In 1997, in a statement by its President on the protection of humanitarian assistance to refugees and others in conflict situations, the UN Security Council expressed its “grave concern at the recent increase in attacks or use of force in conflict situations against refugees and other civilians, in violation of … international humanitarian law” and reiterated its “condemnation of such acts”. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/1997/34, 19 June 1997, p. 1.

In 1997, in a statement by its President following the military coup d’état in Sierra Leone, the UN Security Council strongly condemned “the violence which has been inflicted on both local and expatriate communities”. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/1997/29, 27 May 1997.

In 1997, in a statement by its President, the UN Security Council stated: “The Security Council notes with deep concern the reports about mass killings of prisoners of war and civilians in Afghanistan and supports the Secretary-General’s intention to continue to investigate fully such reports.” 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/1997/55, 16 December 1997, p. 2.

In 1998, in a statement by its President on the situation in Sierra Leone, the UN Security Council condemned “as gross violations of international humanitarian law the recent atrocities carried out against the civilian population” and called for “an immediate end to all violence against civilians”.  
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/1998/13, 20 May 1998, p. 1.

In 1998, in a statement by its President, the UN Security Council expressed its deep concern at “reports of mass killings of civilians in northern Afghanistan” and demanded that “the Taliban fully respect international humanitarian law and human rights”. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/1998/27, 15 September 1998, p. 1.

In 1998, in a statement by its President, the UN Security Council condemned “the attacks or use of force in conflict situations against refugees and other civilians, in violation of the relevant rules of international law, including those of international humanitarian law”. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/1998/30, 29 September 1998, p. 1.

In 1999, in a statement by its President, the UN Security Council strongly condemned “the deliberate targeting by combatants of civilians in armed conflict” and demanded that all concerned “put an end to such violations of international humanitarian and human rights law”. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/1999/6, 12 February 1999, p. 2.

In 2001, in a statement by its President on the situation in Burundi, the UN Security Council condemned “the deliberate targeting of the civilian population by the armed groups” and called upon all parties “to abide by international humanitarian law and in particular to refrain from any further attacks or any military action that endangers the civilian population”. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/2001/6, 2 March 2001, p. 1.

UN Security Council
In 2003, in a statement by its President on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the UN Security Council stated:
The Security Council strongly condemns all attacks and acts of violence directed against civilians or other protected persons under international law, in particular international humanitarian law in situations of armed conflict, including such attacks and acts of violence against women, children, refugees, internally displaced persons and other vulnerable groups. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/2003/27, 15 December 2003, p. 1.

UN Security Council
In 2004, in a statement by its President on the situation in Côte d’Ivoire, the UN Security Council strongly recalled “the obligations of all Ivoirian parties, the Government of Côte d’Ivoire as well as the Forces Nouvelles, to refrain from any violence against civilians”. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/2004/42, 6 November 2004, p. 1.

In 2004, in a statement by its President on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the UN Security Council stated:
The Security Council reaffirms its strong condemnation of all acts of violence targeting civilians or other protected persons under international law. The Council is gravely concerned that civilians are increasingly targeted by combatants and armed elements during armed conflict, in particular women, children and other vulnerable groups, including refugees and internally displaced persons, and recognizes the negative impact this will have on durable peace and national reconciliation. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/2004/46, 14 December 2004, p. 1.

In 2005, in a statement by its President on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the UN Security Council stated:
The Council reaffirms its strong condemnation of the deliberate targeting of civilians or other protected persons in situations of armed conflict, and calls upon all parties to put an end to such practices. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/2005/25, 21 June 2005, p. 1.

In 2005, in a statement by its President on the situation concerning the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the UN Security Council stated:
The Security Council condemns with the utmost firmness the massacre of some 50 people, most of them women and children, which occurred on 9 July 2005 in Ntulu-Mamba, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

The Council stresses the need to bring to an end, particularly in the Kivus and Ituri, attacks by armed groups on local populations, which not only cause further suffering to civilians but also threaten the stability of the entire region, including the holding of elections in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/2005/31, 13 July 2005, p. 1.

In 2007, in a statement by its President on reports of the Secretary-General on the Sudan, the UN Security Council stated:
The Security Council recalls the demand in resolution 1769 (2007) on all parties for an immediate cessation of hostilities and attacks on AMIS [African Union Mission in Sudan], civilians and humanitarian agencies. The Council insists that all parties in the Sudan comply with this demand”. 
UN Security Council, Statement by the President, UN Doc. S/PRST/2007/35, 2 October 2007, p. 1.

League of Nations Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 1938 on the protection of civilian populations against air bombardment in case of war, the Assembly of the League of Nations stated: “The intentional bombing of civilian populations is illegal.” 
League of Nations, Assembly, Resolution adopted on 30 September 1938, § I(1), Official Journal, Special Supplement No. 182, Records of the XIXth Ordinary Session of the Assembly, pp. 15–17.

UN General Assembly
In Resolution 2444 (XXIII), adopted in 1968, the UN General Assembly affirmed Resolution XXVIII of the 20th International Conference of the Red Cross and the basic humanitarian principle applicable in all armed conflicts laid down therein that “it is prohibited to launch attacks against the civilian population as such”. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 2444 (XXIII), 19 December 1968, § 1(b), voting record: 111-0-0-15.

In Resolution 2675 (XXV), adopted in 1970, the UN General Assembly reiterated: “Civilian populations as such should not be the object of military operations.” 
UN General Assembly, Res. 2675 (XXV), 9 December 1970, § 4, voting record: 109-0-8-10.

In Resolution 3318 (XXIX), adopted in 1974, the UN General Assembly issued a declaration on the protection of women and children in emergency and armed conflict which stated: “Attacks and bombings on the civilian population, inflicting incalculable suffering, especially on women and children, who are the most vulnerable members of the population, shall be prohibited, and such acts shall be condemned.” 
UN General Assembly, Res. 3318 (XXIX), 14 December 1974, § 1, voting record: 110-0-14-14.

In a resolution adopted in 1994, the UN General Assembly condemned “the use of military force against civilian populations” in Bosnia and Herzegovina. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 49/196, 23 December 1994, § 7, voting record: 150-0-14-21.

In a resolution adopted in 1996 on the situation of human rights in the Sudan, the UN General Assembly called upon the parties to the hostilities “to halt the use of weapons against the civilian population”. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 51/112, 12 December 1996, § 9, voting record: 100-16-50-19.

In a resolution adopted in 1998 on the situation of human rights in Kosovo, the UN General Assembly strongly condemned “indiscriminate and widespread attacks on civilians”. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 53/164, 9 December 1998, § 8, voting record: 122-3-34-26.

In a resolution adopted in 2003 on special assistance for the economic recovery and reconstruction of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the UN General Assembly:
Strongly condemns the acts of violence, including the latest massacres in Ituri, systematically perpetrated against civilians, including the massacres, as well as other atrocities and violations of international humanitarian law and human rights … and urges all parties, including the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, to take all necessary steps to prevent further violations of human rights and international humanitarian law, in particular those committed against civilians. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 58/123, 17 December 2003, § 6, voting record: 169-1-0-21.

In a resolution adopted in 2004 on the strengthening of the coordination of emergency humanitarian assistance of the United Nations, the UN General Assembly:
Gravely concerned that violence, including sexual abuse and sexual and other violence against women, girls and boys, continues to be, in many emergency situations, deliberately directed against civilian populations,

14. Calls upon States to adopt preventive measures and effective responses to acts of violence committed against civilian populations as well as to ensure that those responsible are promptly brought to justice, as provided for by national law and obligations under international law. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 59/141, 15 December 2004, preamble and § 14, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 2005 on Israeli practices affecting the human rights of the Palestinian people in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, the UN General Assembly expressed grave concern at “the use of suicide bombing attacks against Israeli civilians, resulting in extensive loss of life and injury”. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 60/107, 8 December 2005, § 4, voting record: 148-7-17-19.

In a resolution adopted in 2005 on the strengthening of the coordination of emergency humanitarian assistance of the United Nations, the UN General Assembly:
Noting with grave concern that violence, including sexual abuse and sexual and other violence against women, girls and boys, continues to be, in many emergency situations, deliberately directed against civilian populations,

3. Reaffirms the obligation of all States and parties to an armed conflict to protect civilians in armed conflicts in accordance with international humanitarian law, and invites States to promote a culture of protection, taking into account the particular needs of women, children, older persons and persons with disabilities;
4. Calls upon States to adopt preventive measures and effective responses to acts of violence committed against civilian populations and to ensure that those responsible are promptly brought to justice, as provided for by national law and obligations under international law.  
UN General Assembly, Res. 60/124, 15 December 2005, preamble and §§ 3–4, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 2005 on the situation of human rights in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the UN General Assembly condemned:
(a) The ongoing violations of human rights and international humanitarian law, particularly in North Kivu and South Kivu, northern Katanga and other areas in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, including armed violence and reprisals against the civilian population …

(d) The continued illegal exploitation of natural resources in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo and killings and other serious crimes against civilians committed by groups linked to the mining and trading of those resources. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 60/170, 16 December 2005, § 4(a) and (d), voting record: 102-3-67-19.

In a resolution adopted during an emergency special session in 2006 on illegal Israeli actions in Occupied East Jerusalem and the rest of the Occupied Palestinian Territory, the UN General Assembly emphasized “the importance of the safety and well-being of all civilians”, condemned “all attacks against civilians on both sides” and stressed that “the parties must respect their obligations, including by putting an end to violence”. 
UN General Assembly, Res. ES-10/16, 17 November 2006, preamble, voting record: 156-7-6-22.

In a resolution adopted in 2006 on Israeli practices affecting the human rights of the Palestinian people in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, the UN General Assembly expressed deep concern about “the use of suicide bombing attacks against Israeli civilians resulting in extensive loss of life and injury”. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 61/119, 14 December 2006, § 4, voting record: 157-9-14-12.

In a resolution adopted in 2006 on the human rights situation arising from the recent Israeli military operations in Lebanon, the UN General Assembly:
1. Condemns all acts of violence against civilians, including the bombardment by Israeli military forces of Lebanese civilians causing extensive loss of life and injuries, including among children, immense destruction of homes, properties, agricultural lands and vital civilian infrastructure, and the displacement of up to one million Lebanese civilians and outflows of refugees fleeing heavy shelling and bombardment directed against the civilian population, thus exacerbating the magnitude of human suffering in Lebanon;

4. Emphasizes that attacks against civilians, wherever they may occur, are contrary to international humanitarian law and constitute flagrant violations of human rights, condemns the killing of children, women, the elderly and other civilians in Lebanon, underlines that there should be no impunity for such acts, and calls particularly upon Israel to abide scrupulously by its obligations under human rights law, in particular the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and international humanitarian law;
5. Deplores the death of more than 1,100 civilians, one third being children, as a result of the Israeli military operations in Lebanon. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 61/154, 19 December 2006, §§ 1 and 4–5, voting record: 112-7-64-9.

In a resolution adopted in 2006 on the situation of human rights in Myanmar, the UN General Assembly strongly called upon the Government of Myanmar “[t]o take urgent measures to put an end to the military operations targeting civilians in the ethnic areas”. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 61/232, 22 December 2006, § 3(b), voting record: 82-25-45-40.

In a resolution adopted in 2007 on the situation of human rights in Myanmar, the UN General Assembly:
2. Expresses grave concern at:

(d) The discrimination and violations suffered by persons belonging to ethnic nationalities of Myanmar, particularly in border and conflict areas, and attacks by military forces and non-State armed groups on villages in Karen State and other ethnic States in Myanmar, leading to extensive forced displacements and serious violations and other abuses of the human rights of the affected populations;

4. Strongly calls upon the Government of Myanmar:

(h) To take urgent measures to put an end to the military operations targeting civilians in the ethnic areas, and to the associated violations of human rights and humanitarian law directed against persons belonging to ethnic nationalities, to end the systematic forced displacement of large numbers of persons and other causes of refugee flows to neighbouring countries and to respect existing ceasefire agreements. 
UN General Assembly, Res. 62/222, 22 December 2007, §§ 2(d) and 4(h), voting record: 83-22-47-40.

UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1987 on the situation of human rights in southern Lebanon, the UN Commission on Human Rights strongly condemned Israel “for its continued human rights violations manifested in acts of aggression, bombardments of civilian populations, detentions and other arbitrary practices”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1987/54, 11 March 1987, § 1, voting record: 26-1-15.

In a resolution adopted in 1988 on the situation of human rights in southern Lebanon, the UN Commission on Human Rights strongly condemned “Israel’s persistence in violating human rights manifested in acts of aggression, bombardments of civilian populations, detentions and other arbitrary practices”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1988/66, 10 March 1988, § 1, voting record: 26-1-15.

In a resolution adopted in 1989 on the situation of human rights in southern Lebanon, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Strongly condemns Israel for its continued violations of human rights in southern Lebanon, manifested particularly in the continuing occupation of parts of that territory by force, the bombardment of villages and the civilian population, their arrest and detention in Israeli prisons and detention centres, the destruction of their homes and their property, the fact that they are terrorized, forced out of their residences and expelled from the occupied area, and other arbitrary practices. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1989/65, 8 March 1989, § 1, voting record: 30-1-12.

In a resolution adopted in 1990 on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan, the UN Commission on Human Rights urged “all parties to the conflict to respect the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and their Additional Protocols of 1977, to halt the use of weapons against the civilian population …”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1990/53, 6 March 1990, § 5, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1991 on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan, the UN Commission on Human Rights urged “all parties to the conflict to respect the accepted humanitarian rules, as set out in the Geneva Conventions and their Additional Protocols, to halt the use of weapons against the civilian population …”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1991/78, 6 March 1991, § 6, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1992 on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan, the UN Commission on Human Rights urged “all parties to the conflict to respect the accepted humanitarian rules, as set out in the Geneva Conventions and their Additional Protocols, to halt the use of weapons against the civilian population …”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1992/68, 4 March 1992, § 6, adopted without a vote

In a resolution adopted in 1992 on the situation of human rights in the territory of the former Yugoslavia, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Condemns also the indiscriminate shelling of cities and civilian areas, the systematic terrorization and murder of non-combatants, the destruction of vital services, the besieging of cities, and the use of military force against civilian populations and relief operations by all sides, recognizing that the main responsibility lies with Serbian forces. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1992/S-2/1, 1 December 1992, § 7, voting record: 45-1-1.

In a resolution adopted in 1993 on the situation of human rights in the territory of the former Yugoslavia, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Condemns once again the indiscriminate shelling of cities and civilian areas, the systematic terrorization and murder of non-combatants, the destruction of vital services, the besieging of cities and the use of military force against civilian populations and relief operations by all sides, recognizing that the main responsibility lies with Serbian forces. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1993/7, 23 February 1993, § 12, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1993 on the situation of human rights in Sudan, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Calls upon all parties to the hostilities to respect fully the applicable provisions of international humanitarian law, including in particular common article 3 of the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 for the protection of war victims, to halt the use of weapons against the civilian population and to protect all civilians from violations, including forcible displacement, arbitrary detention, ill-treatment, torture and summary execution. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1993/60, 10 March 1993, § 9, voting record: 35-9-8.

In a resolution adopted in 1993 on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Urges all the Afghan parties to respect accepted humanitarian rules, as set out in the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 and the Additional Protocols thereto of 1977, to halt the use of weapons against the civilian population, to protect all civilians from acts of reprisal and violence, including ill-treatment, torture and summary executions, and to expedite the simultaneous release of prisoners wherever they may be held. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1993/66, 10 March 1993, § 6, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1994 on the situation of human rights in the territory of the former Yugoslavia, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Denounces continued deliberate and unlawful attacks and uses of military force against civilians and other protected persons by all sides, recognizing that the primary though not the sole responsibility lies with the Serbian forces, and condemns particularly:
(a) The besieging of cities and other civilian areas, and the deliberate, murderous shelling thereof, particularly of the declared “safe areas”;
(b) The systematic terrorization and murder of civilians and non-combatants;
(c) The destruction of vital services;
(d) The use of military force against relief operations;
(e) The intentional destruction of mosques, churches and other places of worship and the desecration of cemeteries;
(f) Other attacks upon civilians; and
(g) The forced conscription, by any party, of internally displaced persons and of refugees in disregard of their protected status. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1994/72, 9 March 1994, § 7, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1994 on the situation of human rights in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Strongly condemns the policy of genocide and “ethnic cleansing”, the indiscriminate shelling of civilian populations, particularly in Sarajevo, and in the other declared safe areas of Tuzla, Bihac, Gorazde, Srebrenica and Zepa, as well as Mostar and other endangered areas in central Bosnia and elsewhere, the forced deportation of populations, the attacks against civilian targets, continued detention of civilians in appalling conditions in prisons and camps, the use of military force against defenceless civilians, the continued practice of rape as a weapon of war and the strategy of strangulation of populations by obstructing food supplies and other essentials to civilian populations. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1994/75, 9 March 1994, § 1, voting record: 41-1-10.

In a resolution adopted in 1994 on the situation of human rights in the Sudan, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Deeply concerned also about increasing air attacks by the Sudanese air force in southern Sudan resulting in great harm and injury to the civilian population,

6. Also calls upon the Government of the Sudan to explain without delay the circumstances of the recent air attacks on civilian targets in southern Sudan;

10. Also calls upon parties to the hostilities to respect fully the applicable provisions of international humanitarian law, including article 3 common to the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and the additional protocols thereto of 1977, to halt the use of weapons against the civilian population, to protect all civilians, including women, children and members of minorities, from violations, including forcible displacement, arbitrary detention, abductions, ill-treatment, torture and summary execution. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1994/79, 9 March 1994, preamble and §§ 6 and 10, voting record: 35-9-9.

In a resolution adopted in 1994 on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Urges all the Afghan parties to respect accepted humanitarian rules, as set out in the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 and the Additional Protocols thereto of 1977, to halt the use of weapons against the civilian population, to protect all civilians from acts of reprisal and violence, including ill-treatment, torture and summary executions, and to expedite the simultaneous release of prisoners wherever they may be held. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1994/84, 9 March 1994, § 8, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1994 on the situation of human rights in Zaire, the UN Commission on Human Rights noted with indignation that “the army and the security services have used force against unarmed civilians”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1994/87, 9 March 1994, § 2, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1995 on the conflict in Guatemala, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Urges both parties to respect the applicable rules of international humanitarian law in the internal armed conflict and to refrain from any activities that may endanger the rights of the great majority of Guatemalans who are not involved in this conflict and affect the physical security of the civilian population and that of their property. 
UN Commission of Human Rights, Res. 1995/51, 3 March 1995, § 5, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1995 on the situation of human rights in Zaire, the UN Commission on Human Rights noted with concern that “the army and the security forces continue to use force against civilians and to enjoy great impunity”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1995/69, 8 March 1995, § 3, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1995 on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Urges all the Afghan parties fully to respect accepted humanitarian rules, as set out in the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 and the Additional Protocols thereto of 1977, to halt the use of weapons against the civilian population and to protect all civilians. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1995/74, 8 March 1995, § 6, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1995 on the situation of human rights in the Sudan, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Also calls upon parties to the hostilities to respect fully the applicable provisions of international humanitarian law including article 3 common to the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and the Additional Protocols thereto of 1977, to halt the use of weapons, including land mines, against the civilian population, and to protect all civilians, including women, children and members of minorities, from violations, including forcible displacement, arbitrary detention, ill-treatment, torture and summary execution. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1995/77, 8 March 1995, § 15, voting record: 33-7-10.

In a resolution adopted in 1995 on the situation of human rights in the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Republic of Croatia and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro) , the UN Commission on Human Rights:
5. Further condemns the indiscriminate shelling and besieging of cities and civilian areas, the systematic terrorization and murder of non-combatants, the destruction of vital services and the use of military force against civilian populations and relief operations, including the use of cluster and napalm bombs against civilian targets by Bosnian and Croatian Serb forces;
6. Again denounces the continued deliberate and unlawful attacks and use of military force against civilians and other protected persons by all sides, recognizing that the primary, though not the sole, responsibility lies with the Serbian forces. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1995/89, 8 March 1995, §§ 5–6, voting record: 44-0-7.

In a resolution adopted in 1996 on the situation of human rights in Burundi, the UN Commission on Human Rights strongly condemned “the continued violence against the civilian population, including refugees [and] displaced persons”. It also strongly condemned “the massacres of civilians that have taken place in Burundi for the past several years”.  
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1996/1, 27 March 1996, preamble and § 7, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1996 on the situation of human rights in Sudan, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Calls upon all parties to the hostilities to respect fully the applicable provisions of international humanitarian law including article 3 common to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 and the Additional Protocols thereto of 1977, to halt the use of weapons, including land-mines, against the civilian population and to protect all civilians, especially women, members of minorities and children, from violations of human rights and humanitarian law, including forcible displacement, arbitrary detention, ill-treatment, torture and summary executions. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1996/73, 23 April 1996, § 15, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1996 on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Urges all the Afghan parties to respect fully international humanitarian law, to protect civilians, to halt the use of weapons against the civilian population, including the rocket attacks against civilian suburbs of Kabul, to stop the laying of land-mines and to prohibit the drafting and the recruitment of children as para-combatants. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1996/75, 23 April 1996, § 4, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1998 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Condemns … in particular the continuation of acts of wounding and killing such as that which took place on 10 March 1998 when Israeli occupation soldiers shot dead three Palestinian workers and wounded nine others, one of them seriously, and the subsequent opening of fire on Palestinian civilians after the incidents of the following days. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1998/1, 27 March 1998, § 1, voting record: 31-1-20.

In a resolution adopted in 1998 on the human rights situation in southern Lebanon and western Bekaa, the UN Commission on Human Rights censured “the repeated Israeli aggressions” in southern Lebanon and western Bekaa, which had caused a large number of deaths and injuries among civilians. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1998/62, 21 April 1998, preamble, voting record: 52-1-0.

In a resolution adopted in 1998 on the situation of human rights in Myanmar, the UN Commission on Human Rights called upon the government and all other parties to the hostilities “to halt the use of weapons against the civilian population”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1998/63, 21 April 1998, § 4(i), adopted without a vote.

UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1998 on the situation of human rights in the Sudan, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Calls upon all parties to the hostilities to respect fully the applicable provisions of international humanitarian law, including article 3 common to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 and the Additional Protocols thereto of 1977, to halt the use of weapons, including landmines, and to protect all civilians, especially persons belonging to minorities, women and children, from violations of human rights and humanitarian law, including forcible displacement, arbitrary detention, ill­treatment, torture and summary executions. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1998/67, 21 April 1998, § 6, voting record: 31-6-16.

UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1998 on the question of human rights in Afghanistan, the Commission noted with deep concern the reports of mass killings and atrocities committed by combatants against the civilian population. It urged the Afghan parties to respect IHL fully and in particular to protect civilians and to halt the use of weapons against the civilian population. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1998/70, 21 April 1998, §§ 2(d) and 5(c), adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 1998 on the abduction of children from northern Uganda, the UN Commission on Human Rights requested that the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), operating in northern Uganda, cease immediately all abductions of and attacks against the civilian population, in particular women and children. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1998/75, 22 April 1998, § 4, voting record: 24-1-27.

In a resolution adopted in 2003 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights stated that it was:
Gravely concerned at the continued deterioration of the situation in the occupied Palestinian territory and at the gross violations of human rights and international humanitarian law, in particular … the conducting of incursions into towns and camps and the killing of men, women and children there as was the case lately in the camps of Jenin, Balata, Khan Younis, Rafah, Ramallah, Gaza, Nablus, al-Birah, al-Ama’ri, Jabaliya, Bethlehem, Dheisheh, Hay al-Daraj and Hay al-Zaitoun in the city of Gaza.  
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2003/6, 15 April 2003, preamble, voting record: 33-5-15.

In a resolution adopted in 2004 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights stated that it was:
Gravely concerned at the continued deterioration of the situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory and at the gross violations of human rights and international humanitarian law, in particular … incursions into towns, villages and camps to kill innocent men, women and children, as was the case in Jenin, Balata, Khan Younis, Rafah, Ramallah, Gaza, Nablus, AlBirah, AlAmari, Jabalia, Bethlehem and Dheisheh and in the AlDaraj and AlZaitoun neighbourhoods in the city of Gaza, and also during recent months in Rafah and in AlShajai’ia neighbourhood in Gaza, as well as during the last Israeli massacres in the AlNusseirat and AlBurreij refugee camps in the centre of the Gaza Strip on 7 March 2004. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2004/10, 15 April 2004, preamble, voting record: 31-7-15.

In a resolution adopted in 2005 on Israeli practices affecting the human rights of the Palestinian people in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Expressing grave concern about the extrajudicial executions and the use of force by Israel against the Palestinian civil population, inflicting heavy casualties, and the continued targeting of schoolchildren, which led to loss of lives and fatal injuries,

2. Condemns the use of force by the Israeli occupying forces against Palestinian civilians, resulting in extensive loss of life, vast numbers of injuries and massive destruction of homes, properties, agricultural lands and vital infrastructure. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2005/7, 14 April 2005, preamble and § 2, voting record: 29-10-14.

In a resolution adopted in 2005 on the rights of the child, the UN Commission on Human Rights expressed concern “that, in conflict situations, children continue to be victims and deliberate targets of attacks with consequences that are often irreversible for their physical and emotional integrity”. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2005/44, 19 April 2005, preamble, voting record: 52-1-0.

In a resolution adopted in 2005 on advisory services and technical assistance in Burundi, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Strongly condemns the massacre committed against the civilian Banyamulenge refugee population at Gatumba on 13 August 2004 and demands that the perpetrators of these killings be brought to justice. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2005/75, 20 April 2005, § 24, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 2005 on the situation of human rights in the Sudan, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Expressing its deep concern at the situation of human rights in Darfur, in particular attacks against civilians, gender-based violence and the dire consequences of the prolonged conflict for the civilian population in Darfur, in particular the increase in the number of refugees and internally displaced persons,

2. Condemns:

(b) The violence against civilians and sexual violence against women and girls, destruction of villages, widespread displacement and other violations in Darfur and urges all parties to take necessary steps to prevent further violations;
(c) The prevailing situation in the Darfur region of the Sudan, in particular the humanitarian crisis and the continued reported violations of human rights, including attacks against civilians committed by all parties, particularly the Janjaweed and other armed militias, and reiterates the need to control, disarm and disband these militias and bring to justice all those responsible for human rights violations in Darfur. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2005/82, 21 April 2005, preamble and § 2(b)–(c), adopted without a vote.

UN Human Rights Council
In a resolution adopted in 2006 on the grave situation of human rights in Lebanon caused by Israeli military operations, the UN Human Rights Council:
Emphasizing that attacks and killings of innocent civilians and the destruction of houses, property and infrastructure in Lebanon are a breach of the principles of the Charter of the United Nations, international law and international humanitarian law as well as flagrant violations of human rights,

2. Condemns the massive bombardment of Lebanese civilian populations, especially the massacres in Qana, Marwaheen, Al Duweir, Al Bayadah, Al Qaa, Chiyah, Ghazieh and other towns of Lebanon, causing thousands of deaths and injuries, mostly among children and women …

6. Calls upon Israel to stop immediately military operations against the civilian population and civilian objects resulting in death and destruction and serious violations of human rights. 
UN Human Rights Council, Res. S-2/1, 11 August 2006, preamble and §§ 2 and 6, voting record: 27-11-8.

In a resolution adopted in 2007 entitled “Follow-up decision S-4/101 of 13 December 2006 adopted by the Human Rights Council at its fourth special session entitled ‘Situation of human rights in Darfur’”, the UN Human Rights Council:
Expresses its deep concern regarding the seriousness of the ongoing violations of human rights and international humanitarian law in Darfur, including armed attacks on the civilian population and humanitarian workers, widespread destruction of villages, and continued and widespread violence, in particular gender-based violence against women and girls, as well as the lack of accountability of perpetrators of such crimes. 
UN Human Rights Council, Res. 4/8, 30 March 2007, § 3, adopted without a vote.

In a resolution adopted in 2007 entitled “Human Rights Council Group of Experts on the situation of human rights in Darfur”, the UN Human Rights Council reiterated its call upon all parties “to put an end to all acts of violence against civilians, with special focus on vulnerable groups, including women, children and internally displaced persons, as well as human rights defenders and humanitarian workers”. 
UN Human Rights Council, Res. 6/35, 14 December 2007, § 7, adopted without a vote.

UN Sub-Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 1984, the UN Sub-Commission on Human Rights recalled the internal character of the conflict in El Salvador and held that government forces violated the Geneva Conventions by launching systematic attacks on the rural population, a non-military objective. 
UN Sub-Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1984/26, 30 August 1984, preamble.

In a resolution adopted in 1984, the UN Sub-Commission on Human Rights expressed its deep concern at “the serious, increasing and systematic violation of human rights in Guatemala, in particular acts of violence against civilians and non-combatant population”. 
UN Sub-Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1984/23, 29 August 1984, § 1.

In a resolution adopted in 1985, the UN Sub-Commission on Human Rights expressed once again “its deep concern for the massive, grave and systematic violation of human rights which continue to take place in Guatemala, and in particular acts of violence against the non-combatant population”. 
UN Sub-Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1985/28, 30 August 1985, § 1.

In a resolution adopted in 1993, the UN Sub-Commission on Human Rights deplored the continued victimization of civilians as a result of military actions in Iraq. 
UN Sub-Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1993/20, 20 August 1993, preamble.

In a resolution adopted in 1995, the UN Sub-Commission on Human Rights called upon the parties to the conflict in the former Yugoslavia to halt all acts of violence directed against the civilian population, including those against fleeing refugees. 
UN Sub-Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1995/8, 18 August 1995, § 1.

In a resolution adopted in 1996, the UN Sub-Commission on Human Rights stated that it was alarmed by the multiple attacks on and massacres of innocent civilians in Burundi committed by the militia and armed bands of extremist groups in defiance of the principles of IHL. 
UN Sub-Commission on Human Rights, Res. 1996/5, 19 August 1996, preamble.

UN Secretary-General
In 1992, in reports on UNIFIL in Lebanon, the UN Secretary-General appealed to all the parties to the conflict to show proper regard for the lives of non-combatant men, women and children. 
UN Secretary-General, Report on UNIFIL, UN Doc. S/23452, 21 January 1992, § 27; Report on UNIFIL, UN Doc. S/24341, 21 July 1992, § 30.

In 1996, in reports on UNOMIL in Liberia, the UN Secretary-General included among alleged violations of IHL an attack launched by ULIMO-J forces on ECOMOG positions in the town of Kle on 2 January 1996, in which various sources reported that the fighters intentionally fired upon local and displaced civilians. 
UN Secretary-General, Fifteenth progress report on UNOMIL, UN Doc. S/1996/47, 23 January 1996, § 25; Sixteenth progress report on UNOMIL, UN Doc. S/1996/232, 1 April 1996, § 6.

In 1998, in a report on protection for humanitarian assistance to refugees and others in conflict situations, the UN Secretary-General noted that the changing pattern of conflicts in recent years had dramatically worsened the problem of compliance with international law and listed as an example that “civilian populations are being specifically targeted”. 
UN Secretary-General, Report on protection for humanitarian assistance to refugees and others in conflict situations, UN Doc. S/1998/883, 22 September 1998, § 12.

In 1998, in a report on MONUA in Angola, the UN Secretary-General pointed out that the increase in military operations had resulted in a rise in the number of reported human rights violations, including “numerous attacks against the civilian population and local officials”. 
UN Secretary-General, Report on MONUA, UN Doc. S/1998/838, 7 September 1998, § 16.

The civilian population has continued to bear the brunt of military operations by both sides … At such times, principles of international humanitarian law are especially important as they seek to protect the most vulnerable groups – those who are not involved in military operations – from direct or indiscriminate attack or being forced to flee. 
UN Secretary-General, Report on MONUA, UN Doc. S/1998/931, 8 October 1998, § 17.

In 1998, in a report on the situation in Sierra Leone, the UN Secretary-General noted:
The main focus of human rights concerns … has been the attacks on civilians by armed, uniformed groups, which are consistently reported to be members of the rebel forces. They have systematically mutilated or severed the limbs of non-combatants around the towns of Koidu and Kabala.  
UN Secretary-General, Fifth report on the situation in Sierra Leone, UN Doc. S/1998/486, 9 June 1998, §§ 35 and 81.

In 1998, in a report on UNOMSIL in Sierra Leone, the UN Secretary-General provided a list of human rights abuses committed in Sierra Leone and observed that there was strong evidence of systematic and widespread human rights violations against the civilian population. He referred to a survey carried out in certain areas of Sierra Leone, which indicated a large number of war-related civilian deaths and injuries, a significant percentage of which were women and children. The Secretary-General added that the killing of some 44 of the 144 paramount chiefs indicated a deliberate attempt to target them. He stated that he was “deeply concerned about the plight of innocent civilians in the country, who may still be at risk from future attacks”. 
UN Secretary-General, First progress report on UNOMSIL, UN Doc. S/1998/750, 12 August 1998, §§ 33, 35 and 58.

In 1998, in a report concerning the situation in Kosovo, the UN Secretary-General maintained that he was distressed by the desperate situation of the civilian population and especially by the fact that civilians had become the main targets in the conflict. 
UN Secretary-General, Report on the situation in Kosovo, UN Doc. S/1998/912, 3 October 1998, § 7.

In a press release issued in February 2000, the UN Secretary-General stated that he deplored the Israeli air attacks against civilian targets in Lebanon. He expressed his deep concern at the escalation of the hostilities, which had resulted in loss of life. 
UN Secretary-General, Press Release, Secretary-General deplores Israeli air attacks in Lebanon, UN Doc. SG/SM/7296, 8 February 2000.

In 2000, in a report on the establishment of a Special Court for Sierra Leone, the UN Secretary-General stated:
Other serious violations of international humanitarian law falling within the jurisdiction of the Court include: (a) Attacks against the civilian population as such, or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities … The prohibition on attacks against civilians is based on the most fundamental distinction drawn in international humanitarian law between the civilian and the military and the absolute prohibition on directing attacks against the former. Its customary international law nature is, therefore, firmly established. 
UN Secretary-General, Report on the establishment of a Special Court for Sierra Leone, UN Doc. S/2000/915, 4 October 2000, §§ 15(a) and 16.

UN Commission on Human Rights (Special Rapporteur)
In 1992, in an interim report on the situation of human rights in Iraq, the Special Rapporteur of the UN Commission on Human Rights stated: “The most blatant violations of human rights being perpetrated by the Government are constituted by the military attacks against the civilian population.” 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in Iraq, Interim report, UN Doc. S/24386, 5 August 1992, § 11.

In various reports on the situation of human rights in the former Yugoslavia, the Special Rapporteur of the UN Commission on Human Rights condemned direct attacks against civilians. For example, in his third report submitted in August 1993, he denounced the various violations of laws related to the conduct of war committed against the civilian population of Sarajevo. Providing examples of these violations, he particularly condemned the arbitrary killing of civilians by sniper fire. In his conclusion, the Special Rapporteur described as a fundamental breach of the laws of war the use of the civilian population as military targets and their deliberate killing and wounding. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in the Former Yugoslavia, Third periodic report, UN Doc. E/CN.4/1994/6, 26 August 1993, §§ 36 and 45.

UN Commission on the Truth for El Salvador
In 1993, the UN Commission on the Truth for El Salvador established that, during the internal conflict in El Salvador, the governmental armed forces viewed the civilian population in disputed areas as a “legitimate target of attack”. This policy, implemented in order to deprive the guerrillas of all means of survival, resulted in massacres and the destruction of entire communities. According to the Commission, such a tactic was a clear violation of human rights. The Commission pointed out that “following much international criticism, the armed forces cut back on the use of air attacks against the civilian population”. 
UN Commission on the Truth for El Salvador, Report, UN Doc. S/25500, 1 April 1993, p. 32.

The State of El Salvador, through the activities of members of the armed forces and/or civilian officials, is responsible for having taken part in, encouraged and tolerated the operations of the death squads which illegally attacked members of the civilian population. 
UN Commission on the Truth for El Salvador, Report, UN Doc. S/25500, 1 April 1993, p. 137.

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Council of Europe Committee of Ministers
In a statement on Lebanon issued in September 1982, the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers expressed “profound shock at the massacre perpetrated in West Beirut against Palestinian civilians” and condemned “with revulsion this crime which constitutes a flagrant violation of human rights, the respect and protection of which are fundamental to the Council of Europe”. 
Council of Europe, Committee of Ministers, Statement on Lebanon, 23 September 1982.

Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly
In a recommendation adopted in 1991, the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly condemned the “brutal repression, of genocidal proportions” carried out by the Iraqi forces against the civilian population and in particular against Iraqi Kurds, following “large scale armed insurrection”. 
Council of Europe, Parliamentary Assembly, Rec. 1150, 24 April 1991, § 3.

Council of Europe Committee of Ministers
In a declaration on the bombardments of Dubrovnik in 1991, the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers condemned the use of force against the civilian population. 
Council of Europe, Committee of Ministers, Declaration on the bombardments of Dubrovnik, 13 November 1991.

In a declaration on Nagorno-Karabakh in 1992, the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers condemned the violence and attacks directed against the civilian population in the region. 
Council of Europe, Committee of Ministers, Declaration on Nagorno-Karabakh, 11 March 1992.

Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly
In a resolution adopted in 1993, the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly stated that the conflict in the former Yugoslavia was marked by “barbarous violence against civilians, in particular women and children”. Such violence was held to constitute a violation of “the elementary rules and principles of the laws of war and [of] the protective provisions of humanitarian law”. The Assembly urged the governments of member and non-member States “to undertake to protect children from the scourge of war and to condemn the barbaric practice in recent armed conflicts of using women and children as targets”. 
Council of Europe, Parliamentary Assembly, Res. 1011, 28 September 1993, §§ 2 and 7(iii).

Council of Europe Committee of Ministers
In a declaration on Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1994, the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers vigorously condemned the “massacres of civilians” in Sarajevo. 
Council of Europe, Committee of Ministers, Declaration on Bosnia and Herzegovina, 14 February 1994, § 3.

Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly
In 1995, during a debate in the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly on the situation in Chechnya (in relation to the Russian Federation’s application for membership of the Council of Europe), a German member, speaking on behalf of the Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights, stated:
The action taken by the military forces of the Russian Federation, with blanket bombing and the use of heavy weapons against the civilian population, is an extremely serious breach of human rights and a violation of [established standards of IHL] … The United Nations General Assembly has also adopted important documents that demand respect for, and protection of, the civilian population in military conflicts. None of these documents differentiates between international and internal military conflicts. The brutal action taken by the Russian military can, therefore, never be justified, whatever warped arguments are put forward. 
Council of Europe, Parliamentary Assembly, Statement by a Member from Germany, Official Report of Debates, 1995 Session, 7th Sitting, 2 February 1995, pp. 222–223.

European Community
In a press release on Liberia issued in 1990, the EC voiced strong protest at the killing of civilians. 
EC, Press Release on Liberia, Dublin, 26 April 1990.

European Union
In a statement on Sudan in 1994, the EU condemned attacks on the civilian population. 
EU, Statement on Sudan, Brussels, 21 February 1994.

OAU Assembly of Heads of State and Government
In a declaration on the situation in Angola in 1993, the OAU Assembly of Heads of State and Government strongly condemned the União Nacional para Independência Total de Angola (UNITA) for its repeated massacres of civilian populations and the destruction of social infrastructure. 
OAU, Assembly of Heads of State and Government, Declaration 2 (XXIX), 28–30 June 1993, § 5.

OAU Council of Ministers
In a resolution on Burundi adopted in 1996, the OAU Council of Ministers deplored and strongly condemned “the brutal and dastardly murder of innocent people” and called upon the authorities of Burundi to ensure the safety of the people of Burundi. 
OAU, Council of Ministers, Res. 1649 (LXIV), 1–5 July 1996.

In a resolution adopted in 1996, the OAU Council of Ministers condemned “the constant aggression against civilians in armed conflict situations”. 
OAU, Council of Ministers, Res. 1662 (LXIV), 1–5 July 1996.

Southern African Development Community
In 1998, during a debate in the Sixth Committee of the UN General Assembly, South Africa stated on behalf of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) that the 1998 ICC Statute “would also serve as a reminder that even during armed conflict the rule of law must be upheld. For example, it was unlawful … for attacks to be directed at … individuals not taking a direct part in hostilities … [This act] was a war crime and would be punished.” 
SADC, Statement by South Africa on behalf of the SADC before the Sixth Committee of the UN General Assembly, UN Doc. A/C.6/53/SR.9, 21 October 1998, § 13.

Southern African Development Community
In 1998, during a debate in the Sixth Committee of the UN General Assembly, South Africa stated on behalf of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) that the 1998 ICC Statute “would also serve as a reminder that even during armed conflict the rule of law must be upheld. For example, it was unlawful … for attacks to be directed at … individuals not taking a direct part in hostilities … [This act] was a war crime and would be punished.” 
SADC, Statement by South Africa on behalf of the SADC before the Sixth Committee of the UN General Assembly, UN Doc. A/C.6/53/SR.9, 21 October 1998, § 13.

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International Conference of the Red Cross (1965)
The 20th International Conference of the Red Cross in 1965 solemnly declared: “All Governments and other authorities responsible for action in armed conflicts should conform at least to the following principles: … that it is prohibited to launch attacks against the civilian populations as such”. 
20th International Conference of the Red Cross, Vienna, 2–9 October 1965, Res. XXVIII.

International Conference on the Former Yugoslavia
In a public statement issued on 31 October 1992, the Co-Chairmen of the International Conference on the Former Yugoslavia condemned “the continuing assaults on innocent civilians fleeing from the fighting in and around Jajce” and called upon all parties “to cease and desist from further attacks on persons displaced by the fighting”. 
International Conference on the Former Yugoslavia, Statement of 31 October 1992, Report of the UN Secretary-General on the International Conference on the Former Yugoslavia, UN Doc. S/24795, 11 November 1992, § 13.

International Conference for the Protection of War Victims
In the Final Declaration adopted by the International Conference for the Protection of War Victims in 1993, the participants stated that they refused to accept that “civilian populations should become more and more frequently the principal victims of hostilities and acts of violence perpetrated in the course of armed conflicts, for example where they are intentionally targeted”. 
International Conference for the Protection of War Victims, Geneva, 30 August–1 September 1993, Final Declaration, § I(3), ILM, Vol. 33, 1994, p. 298.

International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent (1995)
The 26th International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent in 1995 adopted a resolution on protection of the civilian population in period of armed conflict in which it expressed deep alarm at “acts of violence or of terror making civilians the object of attack” and strongly condemned “the systematic and massive killing of civilians in armed conflicts”. 
26th International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent, Geneva, 3–7 December 1995, Res. II, preamble and § A(b).

International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent (1999)
The Plan of Action for the years 2000–2003 adopted in 1999 by the 27th International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent requested that all the parties to an armed conflict take effective measures to ensure that “in the conduct of hostilities, every effort is made – in addition to the total ban on directing attacks against the civilian population as such or against civilians not taking a direct part in hostilities … – to spare the life, protect and respect the civilian population”. 
27th International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent, Geneva, 31 October–6 November 1999, Res. I, Annex 2, Plan of Action for the years 2000–2003, Actions proposed for final goal 1.1, § 1(a).

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Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia
In the Kaing case before the ECCC, the accused was charged, both individually and as a superior, with, inter alia, various crimes against humanity and grave breaches of the 1949 Geneva Conventions. In its judgment in 2010, the Trial Chamber considered the prohibition on attacks directed against civilians. The Trial Chamber stated:
308. When considering the general requirements of crimes against humanity, the laws of armed conflict play an important role in the assessment of the legality of the acts committed in the course of a conflict and whether the civilian population may be described as having been targeted as such. The relevant jurisprudence has accordingly emphasised that in the context of a crime against humanity, the civilian population must be the primary object of an attack. In this regard, the expression “directed against” a civilian population serves to clarify that “customary international law obliges parties to the conflict to distinguish at all times between the civilian population and combatants, and obliges them not to attack a military objective if the attack is likely to cause civilian casualties or damage which would be excessive in relation to the military advantage anticipated.” [ICTY, Kunarac case, Judgment, § 426]
309. The factors relevant to determining whether the attack was so directed include: the means and method used in the course of the attack, the status of the victims, their number, the discriminatory nature of the attack, the nature of the crimes committed in its course, and the resistance to the assailants at the time and the extent to which the attacking force may be said to have complied or attempted to comply with the precautionary requirements of the laws of war.
310. The prohibition against targeting the civilian population does not exclude the possibility of civilian casualties incidental to an attack aimed at legitimate military targets. However, indiscriminate attacks, that is attacks that affect civilians or civilian objects and military objects without distinction, may also be qualified as direct attacks on civilians. Where the civilian population is the intended target of an attack, this jurisprudence has not, however, required that the civilian population be the sole or exclusive object of that attack. 
ECCC, Kaing case, Judgment, 26 July 2010, §§ 308–310.
[footnotes in original omitted; emphasis in original]
International Court of Justice
In its advisory opinion in the Nuclear Weapons case in 1996, the ICJ considered the prohibition on making civilians the object of attack to be one of the “cardinal principles contained in the texts constituting the fabric of humanitarian law” and also one of the “intransgressible principles of international customary law”. 
ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, Advisory Opinion, 8 July 1996, §§ 78–79.

In its judgment in the Armed Activities on the Territory of the Congo case (Democratic Republic of the Congo v. Uganda) in 2005, the ICJ stated:
208. The Court … finds that there is sufficient evidence of a reliable quality to support the DRC’s [Democratic Republic of the Congo’s] allegation that the UPDF [Uganda People’s Defence Force] failed to protect the civilian population and to distinguish between combatants and non-combatants in the course of fighting against other troops, especially the FAR [Forces Armées Rwandaises]. According to the report of the inter-agency assessment mission to Kisangani … the armed conflict between Ugandan and Rwandan forces in Kisangani led to “fighting spreading into residential areas and indiscriminate shelling occurring for 6 days … Over 760 civilians were killed, and an estimated 1,700 wounded. More than 4,000 houses were partially damaged, destroyed or made uninhabitable. Sixty-nine schools were shelled, and other public buildings were badly damaged. Medical facilities and the cathedral were also damaged during the shelling, and 65,000 residents were forced to flee the fighting and seek refuge in nearby forests.” MONUC’s [United Nations Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo] special report on the events in Ituri, January 2002–December 2003 … states that on 6 and 7 March 2003, “during and after fighting between UPC [Union of Congolese Patriots] and UPDF in Bunia, several civilians were killed, houses and shops were looted and civilians were wounded by gunshots … Stray bullets reportedly killed several civilians; others had their houses shelled.” … In this context, the Court notes that indiscriminate shelling is in itself a grave violation of humanitarian law.

211. Having examined the case file, the Court considers that it has credible evidence sufficient to conclude that the UPDF troops committed acts of [inter alia] … fail[ing] to distinguish between civilian and military targets and to protect the civilian population in fighting with other combatants. 
ICJ, Armed Activities on the Territory of the Congo case (Democratic Republic of the Congo v. Uganda), Judgment, 19 December 2005, §§ 208 and 211.

International Criminal Court
In the Kony case before the ICC in 2005, the ICC Pre-Trial Chamber II issued an arrest warrant for Joseph Kony, the alleged founder, chairman and commander-in-chief of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), an armed group carrying out an insurgency against the Government of Uganda. He was charged, inter alia, with six counts of the war crime of intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population and against individual civilians not taking a direct part in hostilities (Articles 8(2)(e)(i) and 25(3)(b) of the 1998 ICC Statute). 
ICC, Kony case, Warrant of arrest, 8 July 2005 as amended 27 September 2005, § 43, Counts 4, 8, 14, 18, 25, and 32.

a cycle of violence and established a pattern of “brutalization of civilians” by acts including murder, abduction, sexual enslavement, mutilation, as well as mass burnings of houses and looting of camp settlements; that abducted civilians, including children, are said to have been forcibly “recruited” as fighters, porters and sex slaves to serve the LRA and to contribute to attacks against the Ugandan army and civilian communities. 
ICC, Kony case, Warrant of arrest, 8 July 2005 as amended 27 September 2005, § 5.

In the Otti case before the ICC in 2005, the ICC Pre-Trial Chamber II issued an arrest warrant for Vincent Otti, the alleged vice-chairman and second-in-command of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), an armed group carrying out an insurgency against the Government of Uganda. He was charged, inter alia, with six counts of the war crime of intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population and against individual civilians not taking a direct part in hostilities (Articles 8(2)(e)(i) and 25(3)(b) of the 1998 ICC Statute). 
ICC, Otti case, Warrant of arrest, 8 July 2005, § 42, Counts 4, 8, 14, 18, 25, and 32.

a cycle of violence and established a pattern of “brutalization of civilians” by acts including murder, abduction, sexual enslavement, mutilation, as well as mass burnings of houses and looting of camp settlements; that abducted civilians, including children, are said to have been forcibly “recruited” as fighters, porters and sex slaves to serve the LRA and to contribute to attacks against the Ugandan army and civilian communities. 
ICC, Otti case, Warrant of arrest, 8 July 2005, § 5.

In the Ongwen case before the ICC in 2005, the ICC Pre-Trial Chamber II, dealing with the situation in Uganda, issued an arrest warrant for Dominic Ongwen, allegedly a brigade commander in the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). The decision was based, inter alia, on a charge of attacks against the civilian population (Article 8(2)(e)(i) of the 1998 ICC Statute). The charge related to allegations of “ordering the commission of a war crime which in fact occurred, namely, the intentional directing of attacks against the civilian population of [an] IDP Camp [in] Uganda, and against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities”. 
ICC, Ongwen case, Warrant of Arrest, 8 July 2005, Count 32.

In the Odhiambo case before the ICC in 2005, the Pre-Trial Chamber issued an arrest warrant for Okot Odhiambo, an alleged senior commander of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) in Uganda, inter alia for his role in the commission of war crimes, including attacks against the civilian population (Article 8(2)(e)(i) of the 1998 ICC Statute). 
ICC, Odhiambo case, Warrant of Arrest, 8 July 2005, § 32, Counts 10-19.

In the Harun case before the ICC in 2007, the ICC Pre-Trial Chamber I, dealing with the situation in Darfur, Sudan, issued an arrest warrant for Ahmad Muhammad Harun (“Ahmad Harun”), minister of state for the interior of the Government of Sudan from in or about April 2003 until in or about September 2005, and minister of state for humanitarian affairs of the Government of Sudan since 2006. The decision was based, inter alia, on counts of attacks against the civilian population as war crimes. The Pre-Trial Chamber considered that there were reasonable grounds to believe that:
From on or about 15 August 2003 to on or about 31 August 2003, Ahmad Harun, as part of a group of persons acting with a common purpose, contributed to the commission of attacks against civilians from the primarily Fur population of the Kodoom villages and surrounding areas, and against civilians not taking direct part in hostilities (articles 8(2)(e)(i) and 25(3)(d) of the [1998 ICC] Statute);

On or about 15 August 2003, Ahmad Harun, as part of a group of persons acting with a common purpose, contributed to the commission of attacks against civilians from the primarily Fur population of Bindisi town and surrounding areas, while those civilians were not taking direct part in hostilities (articles 8(2)(e)(i) and 25(3)(d) of the [1998 ICC] Statute);

Between August 2003 and March 2004, Ahmad Harun, as part of a group of persons acting with a common purpose, contributed to the commission of attacks against civilians from the primarily Fur population of Mukjar town and surrounding areas and against civilians not taking direct part in hostilities (articles 8(2)(e)(i) and 25(3)(d) of the [1998 ICC] Statute);

In or around December 2003, Ahmad Harun, as part of a group of persons acting with a common purpose, contributed to the commission of attacks against civilians from the primarily Fur population of Arawala town and surrounding areas and against civilians taking no active part in hostilities (articles 8(2)(e)(i) and 25(3)(d) of the [1998 ICC] Statute). 
ICC, Harun case, Warrant of Arrest, 27 April 2007, Counts 6, 15, 32 and 44.

In the Kushayb case before the ICC in 2007, the ICC Pre-Trial Chamber I, dealing with the situation in Darfur, Sudan, issued an arrest warrant for Ali Muhammad Ali Abd-al-Rahman (“Ali Kushayb”), a member of the Popular Defence Force (PDF) and a senior leader of the Militia/Janjaweed. The decision was based, inter alia, on counts of attacks against the civilian population as war crimes. The Pre-Trial Chamber considered that there were reasonable grounds to believe that:
From on or about 15 August 2003 to on or about 31 August 2003, Ali Kushayb, as part of a group of persons acting with a common purpose, contributed to the commission of attacks against civilians from the primarily Fur population of the Kodoom villages and surrounding areas, and against civilians not taking direct part in hostilities (articles 8(2)(e)(i) and 25(3)(d) of the [1998 ICC] Statute);

From on or about 15 August 2003 to on or about 31 August 2003, Ali Kushayb committed, jointly with others, attacks against civilians from the primarily Fur population of the Kodoom villages and surrounding areas, and against civilians not taking direct part in hostilities (articles 8(2)(e)(i) and 25(3)(a) of the [1998 ICC] Statute);

On or about 15 August 2003, Ali Kushayb, as part of a group of persons acting with a common purpose, contributed to the commission of attacks against civilians from the primarily Fur population of Bindisi town and surrounding areas, while those civilians were not taking direct part in hostilities (articles 8(2)(e)(i) and 25(3)(d) of the [1998 ICC] Statute);

On or about 15 August 2003, Ali Kushayb committed, jointly with others, attacks against civilians from the primarily Fur population of Bindisi town and surrounding areas, while those civilians were not taking direct part in hostilities (articles 8(2)(e)(i) and 25(3)(a) of the [1998 ICC] Statute);

Between August 2003 and March 2004, Ali Kushayb, as part of a group of persons acting with a common purpose, contributed to the commission of attacks against civilians from the primarily Fur population of Mukjar town and surrounding areas and against civilians not taking direct part in hostilities (articles 8(2)(e)(i) and 25(3)(d) of the [1998 ICC] Statute);

Between August 2003 and March 2004, Ali Kushayb committed, jointly with others, attacks against civilians from the primarily Fur population of Mukjar town and surrounding areas and against civilians not taking direct part in hostilities (articles 8(2)(e)(i) and 25(3)(a) of the [1998 ICC] Statute);

In or around December 2003, Ali Kushayb, as part of a group of persons acting with a common purpose, contributed to the commission of attacks against civilians from the primarily Fur population of Arawala town and surrounding areas and against civilians taking no active part in hostilities (articles 8(2)(e)(i) and 25(3)(d) of the [1998 ICC] Statute);

In or around December 2003, Ali Kushayb committed, jointly with others, attacks against civilians from the primarily Fur population of Arawala town and surrounding areas and against civilians not taking direct part in hostilities (articles 8(2)(e)(i) and 25(3)(a) of the [1998 ICC] Statute). 
ICC, Kushayb case, Warrant of Arrest, 27 April 2007, Counts 6, 7, 15, 16, 32, 33, 44 and 45.

In the Katanga case before the ICC in 2007, the ICC Pre-Trial Chamber I issued an arrest warrant for Germain Katanga, the alleged former commander of an armed group known as the Force de résistance patriotique en Ituri (FRPI), in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. He was charged, inter alia, with the war crime of intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians not taking a direct part in hostilities (Article 8(2)(b)(i) or (e)(i) of the 1998 ICC Statute). 
ICC, Katanga case, Warrant of Arrest, 2 July 2007, p. 6.

In the Ngudjolo Chui case before the ICC in 2007, the ICC Pre-Trial Chamber I issued an arrest warrant for Mathieu Ngudjolo Chui, a Congolese national and alleged former leader of an armed group known as the Front des nationalistes et intégrationnistes (FNI). At the time his arrest warrant was issued, he was a colonel in the National Army of the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (FARDC). He was charged, inter alia, with the war crime of intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians not taking a direct part in hostilities (Article 8(2)(b)(i) or (e)(i) of the 1998 ICC Statute). 
ICC, Ngudjolo Chui case, Warrant of Arrest, 6 July 2007, p. 6.

In the Katanga and Chui case before the ICC, the accused, respectively the alleged commander of the Front for Patriotic Resistance of Ituri (FRPI) and the alleged former leader of the Nationalist and Integrationist Front (FNI) in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, were charged with jointly committing through other persons various crimes against humanity and war crimes under Articles 7 and 8 of the 1998 ICC Statute. In its decision on the confirmation of charges in 2008, the Pre-Trial Chamber considered the war crime of intentionally directing attacks against civilians under Article 8(2)(b)(i) of the 1998 ICC Statute. The Pre-Trial Chamber stated:
265. The war crime provided for in article 8(2)(b)(i) of the [1998 ICC] Statute is defined as “intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians not taking direct part in the hostilities.” According to the [2000 ICC] Elements of Crimes, in addition to establishing a nexus between the crime and an international armed conflict and the perpetrator’s awareness of the factual circumstances establishing the existence of such a conflict, this war crime requires the following three elements: (i) “the perpetrator directed an attack”; (ii) “the object of the attack was a civilian population as such or individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities”; and (iii) “the perpetrator intended the civilian population as such or individual civilians not taking part in hostilities to be the object of the attack.”
266. The war crime provided for in article 8(2)(b)(i) of the Statute consists of carrying out an attack against one or more individual civilians not taking active part in hostilities or against a civilian population whose allegiance is with a party to the conflict that is enemy or hostile to that of the perpetrator. In this regard, the Chamber notes that in article 49(1) of the [1977] Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 (“the AP I”), the term “attack” is defined as an “act of violence against the adversary, whether in offence or defense.”
267. The war crime provided for in article 8(2)(b)(i) of the Statute is the first in the series of war crimes for which one essential element is that the crime must be committed during the conduct of hostilities (commonly known as “conduct of hostilities crimes”). Accordingly, this crime is applicable only to attacks (acts of violence) directed against individual civilians not taking direct part in the hostilities, or a civilian population, that has not yet fallen into the hands of the adverse or hostile party to the conflict to which the perpetrator belongs.
268. The Chamber notes that the jurisprudence of the ICTY has emphasised that an individual civilian, or a civilian population, falls into the hands of an adverse or hostile party to the conflict when it comes under the control of its members.
269. In the view of the Chamber, after an individual civilian not taking an active part in the hostilities or the civilian population falls into the hands of such an adverse or hostile party to the conflict, an act of violence against them does not fall under article 8(2)(b)(i) of the Statute but under other provisions of the Statute, which are addressed below.
270. The war crime provided for in article 8(2)(b)(i) of the Statute is committed when the attack (or the act of violence) is launched because, unlike article 85(3) AP I, it does not require any material result or a “harmful impact on the civilian population or on the individual civilians targeted by the attack, and is committed by the mere launching of the attack on a civilian population or individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities, who have not yet fallen into the hands of the attacking party.” Such material results include, for instance, that the attack caused death or serious injury to the body or health of the targeted civilians.
271. As regards the subjective elements, in addition to the standard mens rea requirement provided in article 30 of the Statute, the perpetrator must intend to make individual civilians not taking direct part in the hostilities or the civilian population the object of the attack. This offence therefore, first and foremost, encompasses dolus directus of the first degree.
272. Hence, once the perpetrators launch the attack with the intent to target individual civilians not taking direct part in the hostilities or the civilian population, the offence is completed. This is the case when individual civilians not taking direct part in the hostilities or the civilian population are the sole target of the attack.
273. The crime is also committed when the perpetrator launches the attack with two distinct specific aims: (i) to target a military objective within the meaning of articles 51 and 52 of AP I; and simultaneously, (ii) to target the civilian population or individual civilians not taking direct part in the hostilities who reside in the vicinity. In such a case, the crime is committed when an attack is launched against a village which has significant military value because of its strategic location and when the village contains two distinct targets:
(i) the defending forces of the adverse or hostile party in control of the village (that is, when only the defeat of these forces would permit the attacking party to seize control of the village); and
(ii) the civilian population of the village, if its allegiance is with the adverse or hostile party in control of the village thus leading the attacking forces to consider the “destruction” of that civilian population as the best method for securing control of the village once it has been seized.
274. This second type of case must be distinguished from the other situations in which an attack is launched with the specific aim of targeting only a military objective, albeit with the awareness that incidental loss of life or injury to civilians will or may result from such an attack. 
ICC, Katanga and Chui case, Decision on the confirmation of charges, 30 September 2008, §§ 265–274.
[footnotes in original omitted]
International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia
In its decision on the defence motion for interlocutory appeal on jurisdiction in the Tadić case in 1995, the ICTY Appeals Chamber held that customary rules had developed to govern non-international armed conflicts. On the basis of various sources, including the behaviour of belligerent States, governments and insurgents (in the contexts of the internal conflicts in Spain, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Nigeria and El Salvador), military manuals, ICRC action, UN General Assembly Resolutions 2444 (XXIII) and 2675 (XXV) and various declarations issued by regional organizations, the Appeals Chamber concluded that a customary norm existed protecting civilians from hostilities in internal conflicts, in particular the prohibition on attacks against civilians in the theatre of hostilities. 
ICTY, Tadić case, Interlocutory Appeal, 2 October 1995, §§ 100–127.

In the Karadžić and Mladić case before the ICTY in 1995, the accused were charged with “deliberate attack on the civilian population and individual civilians” in violation of the laws or customs of war for their role in the shelling of civilian gatherings and the sniping campaign against the civilian population of Sarajevo. 
ICTY, Karadžić and Mladić case, First Indictment, 24 July 1995, § 36, Count 5 and § 45, Count 10.

In the Martić case before the ICTY in 1995, the accused was charged with “an unlawful attack against the civilian population and individual civilians of Zagreb” in violation of the laws or customs of war. 
ICTY, Martić case, Initial Indictment, 25 July 1995, §§ 15 and 17, Counts I and III.

In its judgment in 2007, the Trial Chamber stated:
67. The crime of attacks on civilians is based upon Article 51(2) of Additional Protocol I and Article 13(2) of Additional Protocol II, both of which provide, in their relevant parts, that “[t]he civilian population as such, as well as individual civilians, shall not be made the object of attack.”
68. Article 49 of Additional Protocol I defines the term “attack” as “acts of violence against the adversary, whether in offence or in defence”. In relation to attacks on civilians, the Appeals Chamber in Blaškić held that there is an absolute prohibition in customary international law against the targeting of civilians. In Kordić and Čerkez, the Appeals Chamber held that “the prohibition against attacking civilians and civilian objects may not be derogated from because of military necessity”. According to Article 52(2) of Additional Protocol I only military objectives may be lawfully attacked, that is “those objects which by their nature, location, purpose or use make an effective contribution to military action and whose total or partial destruction, capture or neutralization, in the circumstances ruling at the time, offers a definite military advantage”.
69. The prohibition against targeting the civilian population does not exclude the possibility of legitimate civilian casualties incidental to an attack aimed at military targets. However, such casualties must not be disproportionate to the concrete and direct military advantage anticipated before the attack. In particular, indiscriminate attacks, that is attacks which affect civilians or civilian objects and military objects without distinction, may also be qualified as direct attacks on civilians. In this regard, a direct attack against civilians can be inferred from the indiscriminate character of the weapon used.
70. It is an element of the crime that the attacks resulted in death or serious bodily injury within the civilian population at the time of such attacks.
71. The Trial Chamber recalls that the Appeals Chamber has considered that “Article 50 of Additional Protocol I contains a definition of civilians and civilian populations”, which may largely be viewed as reflecting customary law. [Kordić and Čerkez Appeal Judgement, para. 97; Blaškić Appeal Judgement, para. 110]
72. The mens rea required for attacks against civilians is direct and indirect intent. 
ICTY, Martić case, Judgment, 12 June 2007, §§ 67–72.

In the Blaškić case before the ICTY in 1997, the accused was charged with “unlawful attack on civilians” in violation of the laws or customs of war. 
ICTY, Blaškić case, Second Amended Indictment, 25 April 1997, § 8, Count 3.

In its judgment in 2004, the ICTY Appeals Chamber considered, inter alia, alleged errors of law concerning the application of Article 5 of the 1993 ICTY Statute – specifically, whether the Trial Chamber erred in construing and applying the substantive legal standards regarding Crimes Against Humanity. With regard to attacks against civilians, the Appeals Chamber found:
109. … [T]he Appeals Chamber deems it necessary to rectify the Trial Chamber’s statement, contained in paragraph 180 of the Trial Judgement, according to which “[t]argeting civilians or civilian property is an offence when not justified by military necessity.” The Appeals Chamber underscores that there is an absolute prohibition on the targeting of civilians in customary international law.
110. In determining the scope of the term “civilian population,” the Appeals Chamber recalls its obligation to ascertain the state of customary law in force at the time the crimes were committed. In this regard, it notes that the Report of the Secretary General states that the Geneva Conventions “constitute rules of international humanitarian law and provide the core of the customary law applicable in international armed conflicts.” Article 50 of Additional Protocol I to the Geneva Conventions contains a definition of civilians and civilian populations, and the provisions in this article may largely be viewed as reflecting customary law. As a result, they are relevant to the consideration at issue under Article 5 of the Statute, concerning crimes against humanity. 
ICTY, Blaškić case, Judgment on Appeal, 29 July 2004, §§ 109–110.

In the Galić case before the ICTY in 1998, the accused was charged with “attacks on civilians as set forth in Article 51 of Additional Protocol I and Article 13 of Additional Protocol II to the Geneva Conventions of 1949” in violation of the laws or customs of war for having conducted “a coordinated and protracted campaign of sniper attacks upon the civilian population of Sarajevo” and “a coordinated and protracted campaign of artillery and mortar shelling onto civilian areas of Sarajevo and upon its civilian population”. 
ICTY, Galić case, Initial Indictment, 24 April 1998, Counts 4 and 7.

In its judgment in 2003, the ICTY Trial Chamber stated with regard to attacks on civilians as a violation of the laws or customs of war under Article 3 of the 1993 ICTY Statute:
(b) First and Second Tadić Conditions
16. Counts 4 and 7 of the Indictment are clearly based on rules of international humanitarian law, namely Article 51(2) of Additional Protocol I and Article 13(2) of Additional Protocol II. Both provide, in relevant part, that: “The civilian population as such, as well as individual civilians, shall not be made the object of attack.” The first Tadić condition, that the violation must constitute an infringement of a rule of international humanitarian law, is thus fulfilled.
17. As for the second Tadić condition, that the rule must be customary in nature or, if it belongs to treaty law, that the required conditions must be met, the Prosecution claims that the parties to the conflict were bound by Article 51 of Additional Protocol I and Article 13 of Additional Protocol II as a matter of both treaty law and customary law…

19. The jurisprudence of the Tribunal has already established that the principle of protection of civilians has evolved into a principle of customary international law applicable to all armed conflicts. Accordingly, the prohibition of attack on civilians embodied in the above-mentioned provisions reflects customary international law.
20. Moreover, as explained below, the same principle had also been brought into force by the parties by convention.

25. The Trial Chamber finds that by virtue of the 22 May 1992 Agreement the parties to the conflict clearly agreed to abide by the relevant provisions of Additional Protocol I protecting civilians from hostilities. Therefore, Article 51, along with Articles 35 to 42 and 48 to 58 of Additional Protocol I, undoubtedly applied as conventional law between the parties to the conflict, including the VRS and the ABiH. The Trial Chamber thus finds that the second Tadić condition is met.
(c) Third Tadić Condition
26. The third requirement of the Tadić Jurisdiction Decision is that the breach of the rule must be “serious”, that is to say, it must constitute a breach of a Rule protecting important values and the breach must involve grave consequences for the victim.
27. The act of making the civilian population or individual civilians the object of attack (such as attacks committed through a campaign of sniping and shelling as alleged in the Indictment), resulting in death or injury to civilians, transgresses a core principle of international humanitarian law and constitutes without doubt a serious violation of the rule contained in the relevant part of Article 51(2) of Additional Protocol I. It would even qualify as a grave breach of Additional Protocol I. It has grave consequences for its victims. The Trial Chamber is therefore satisfied that the third Tadić condition is fulfilled.
(d) Fourth Tadić Condition
28. In accordance with the fourth Tadić condition, a violation of the rule under examination must incur, under customary or conventional law, the individual criminal responsibility of the person breaching the rule.
29. The Appeals Chamber has found that “customary international law imposes criminal liability for serious violations of common Article 3, as supplemented by other general principles and rules on the protection of victims of internal armed conflict, and for breaching certain fundamental principles and rules regarding means and methods of combat in civil strife.” It has further expressly recognized that customary international law establishes that a violation of the principle prohibiting attacks on civilians entails individual criminal responsibility.
30. It should be noted that the intention of the States parties to Additional Protocol I to criminalize violations of Article 51(2) of Additional Protocol I is evidenced by the fact, mentioned above, that an attack on civilians is considered a grave breach of the Protocol, as defined by Article 85(3)(a) therein. The Trial Chamber has also noted that the “Programme of Action on Humanitarian Issues” recognized that those who committed or ordered the commission of grave breaches were to be held individually responsible.
31. Moreover, national criminal codes have incorporated as a war crime the violation of the principle of civilian immunity from attack. This war crime was punishable under Article 142 of the 1990 Penal Code of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. In the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina it was made punishable by a decree-law of 11 April 1992. National military manuals also consistently sanction violations of the principle. For instance, paragraph 33 (2) of the 1988 Yugoslavia Regulations on the Application of International Laws of War in the Armed Forces of the SFRY condemns as war crimes “attack on civilians” and “deliberately bombing of the civilian population”.
32. It therefore follows that serious violations of the principle prohibiting attacks on civilians incur individual criminal responsibility under the laws of war, and that this was already the case at the time relevant to the Indictment. The fourth Tadić condition is met.
(e) Material and Mental Elements
33. The Trial Chamber will now consider the material and mental elements of the offence of attack on civilians.

42. The constitutive elements of the offence of attack on civilians have not yet been the subject of a definitive statement by the Appeals Chamber. In only two cases before the Tribunal have persons been charged and tried of attack on civilians under Article 3 of the Statute pursuant to Article 51(2) of Additional Protocol I. In each case a brief exposition was given of the offence, together with the offence of attacks on civilian property. In the Blaskić case the Trial Chamber observed in relation to the actus reus that “the attack must have caused deaths and/or serious bodily injury within the civilian population or damage to civilian property. [ …] Targeting civilians or civilian property is an offence when not justified by military necessity.” On the mens rea it found that “such an attack must have been conducted intentionally in the knowledge, or when it was impossible not to know, that civilians or civilian property were being targeted not through military necessity”. The Trial Chamber in the Kordić and Cerkez case held that “prohibited attacks are those launched deliberately against civilians or civilian objects in the course of an armed conflict and are not justified by military necessity. They must have caused deaths and/or serious bodily injuries within the civilian population or extensive damage to civilian objects”.
43. The Trial Chamber follows the above-mentioned jurisprudence to the extent that it states that an attack which causes death or serious bodily injury within the civilian population constitutes an offence. As noted above, such an attack when committed wilfully is punishable as a grave breach of Additional Protocol I. The question remains whether attacks resulting in non-serious civilian casualties, or in no casualties at all, may also entail the individual criminal responsibility of the perpetrator under the type of charge considered here, and thus fall within the jurisdiction of the Tribunal, even though they do not amount to grave breaches of Additional Protocol I. The present Indictment refers only to killing and wounding of civilians; therefore the Trial Chamber does not deem it necessary to express its opinion on that question.
44. The Trial Chamber does not however subscribe to the view that the prohibited conduct set out in the first part of Article 51(2) of Additional Protocol I is adequately described as “targeting civilians when not justified by military necessity”. This provision states in clear language that civilians and the civilian population as such should not be the object of attack. It does not mention any exceptions. In particular, it does not contemplate derogating from this rule by invoking military necessity.
45. The Trial Chamber recalls that the provision in question explicitly confirms the customary rule that civilians must enjoy general protection against the danger arising from hostilities. The prohibition against attacking civilians stems from a fundamental principle of international humanitarian law, the principle of distinction, which obliges warring parties to distinguish at all times between the civilian population and combatants and between civilian objects and military objectives and accordingly to direct their operations only against military objectives. In its Advisory Opinion on the Legality of Nuclear Weapons, the International Court of Justice described the principle of distinction, along with the principle of protection of the civilian population, as “the cardinal principles contained in the texts constituting the fabric of humanitarian law” and stated that “States must never make civilians the object of attack […].”
46. Part IV of Additional Protocol I, entitled “Civilian Population” (articles 48 to 58), develops and augments earlier legal protections afforded to civilians through specific rules aimed at guiding belligerents to respect and protect the civilian population and individual civilians during the conduct of hostilities. The general prohibition mentioned above forms integral part of and is complemented and reinforced by this set of rules. In order to properly define the conduct outlawed in the first part of Article 51(2) of Additional Protocol I, this rule must be interpreted in light of the ordinary meaning of the terms of Additional Protocol I, as well as of its spirit and purpose.
47. As already stated, the first part of Article 51(2) of Additional Protocol I proscribes making the civilian population as such, or individual civilians, the object of attack. According to Article 50 of Additional Protocol I, “a civilian is any person who does not belong to one of the categories of persons referred to in Article 4(A)(1), (2), (3) and (6) of the Third Geneva Convention and in Article 43 of Additional Protocol I.” For the purpose of the protection of victims of armed conflict, the term “civilian” is defined negatively as anyone who is not a member of the armed forces or of an organized military group belonging to a party to the conflict. It is a matter of evidence in each particular case to determine whether an individual has the status of civilian.
48. The protection from attack afforded to individual civilians by Article 51 of Additional Protocol I is suspended when and for such time as they directly participate in hostilities. To take a “direct” part in the hostilities means acts of war which by their nature or purpose are likely to cause actual harm to the personnel or matériel of the enemy armed forces. As the Kupreskić Trial Chamber explained:
the protection of civilian and civilian objects provided by modern international law may cease entirely or be reduced or suspended […] if a group of civilians takes up arms […] and engages in fighting against the enemy belligerent, they may be legitimately attacked by the enemy belligerent whether or not they meet the requirements laid down in Article 4(A)(2) of the Third Geneva Convention of 1949.
Combatants and other individuals directly engaged in hostilities are considered to be legitimate military targets.
49. The civilian population comprises all persons who are civilians, as defined above. The use of the expression “civilian population as such” in Article 51(2) of Additional Protocol I indicates that “the population must never be used as a target or as a tactical objective”.
50. The presence of individual combatants within the population does not change its civilian character. In order to promote the protection of civilians, combatants are under the obligation to distinguish themselves at all times from the civilian population; the generally accepted practice is that they do so by wearing uniforms, or at least a distinctive sign, and by carrying their weapons openly. In certain situations it may be difficult to ascertain the status of particular persons in the population. The clothing, activity, age, or sex of a person are among the factors which may be considered in deciding whether he or she is a civilian. A person shall be considered to be a civilian for as long as there is a doubt as to his or her real status. The Commentary to Additional Protocol I explains that the presumption of civilian status concerns “persons who have not committed hostile acts, but whose status seems doubtful because of the circumstances. They should be considered to be civilians until further information is available, and should therefore not be attacked”. The Trial Chamber understands that a person shall not be made the object of attack when it is not reasonable to believe, in the circumstances of the person contemplating the attack, including the information available to the latter, that the potential target is a combatant.

53. In light of the discussion above, the Trial Chamber holds that the prohibited conduct set out in the first part of Article 51(2) is to direct an attack (as defined in Article 49 of Additional Protocol I) against the civilian population and against individual civilians not taking part in hostilities.
54. The Trial Chamber will now consider the mental element of the offence of attack on civilians, when it results in death or serious injury to body or health. Article 85 of Additional Protocol I explains the intent required for the application of the first part of Article 51(2). It expressly qualifies as a grave breach the act of wilfully “making the civilian population or individual civilians the object of attack”. The Commentary to Article 85 of Additional Protocol I explains the term as follows:
wilfully: the accused must have acted consciously and with intent, i.e., with his mind on the act and its consequences, and willing them ('criminal intent’ or 'malice aforethought’); this encompasses the concepts of 'wrongful intent’ or 'recklessness’, viz., the attitude of an agent who, without being certain of a particular result, accepts the possibility of it happening; on the other hand, ordinary negligence or lack of foresight is not covered, i.e., when a man acts without having his mind on the act or its consequences.
The Trial Chamber accepts this explanation, according to which the notion of “wilfully” incorporates the concept of recklessness, whilst excluding mere negligence. The perpetrator who recklessly attacks civilians acts “wilfully”.
55. For the mens rea recognized by Additional Protocol I to be proven, the Prosecution must show that the perpetrator was aware or should have been aware of the civilian status of the persons attacked. In case of doubt as to the status of a person, that person shall be considered to be a civilian. However, in such cases, the Prosecution must show that in the given circumstances a reasonable person could not have believed that the individual he or she attacked was a combatant.
56. In sum, the Trial Chamber finds that the crime of attack on civilians is constituted of the elements common to offences falling under Article 3 of the Statute, as well as of the following specific elements:
1. Acts of violence directed against the civilian population or individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities causing death or serious injury to body or health within the civilian population.
2. The offender wilfully made the civilian population or individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities the object of those acts of violence.

(f) Conclusion
62. The Trial Chamber finds that an attack on civilian can be brought under Article 3 by virtue of customary international law and, in the instant case, also by virtue of conventional law and is constituted of acts of violence wilfully directed against the civilian population or individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities causing death or serious injury to body or health within the civilian population. 
ICTY, Galić case, Judgment, 5 December 2003, §§ 16–17, 19–20, 25–33, 42–50, 53–56 and 62.
[emphasis in original]
129. [The accused] submits that the Trial Chamber erred in finding that the targeting of civilians cannot be justified by military necessity. The Prosecution responds that the Blaškić Appeal Judgement makes clear that military necessity never justifies the targeting of civilians.
130. The Appeals Chamber has previously emphasized that “there is an absolute prohibition on the targeting of civilians in customary international law” [Blaškić Appeal Judgement, § 109] and that “the prohibition against attacking civilians and civilian objects may not be derogated from because of military necessity” [Kordić and Čerkez Appeal Judgement, § 54]. The Trial Chamber was therefore correct to hold that the prohibition of attacks against the civilians and the civilian population “does not mention any exceptions [and] does not contemplate derogating from this rule by invoking military necessity”. 
ICTY, Galić case, Judgment on Appeal, 30 November 2006, §§ 129–130.

190. One of the fundamental principles of international humanitarian law is that civilians and civilian objects shall be spared as much as possible from the effects of hostilities. This principle stems from the principles of distinction and the principle of protection of the civilian population, “the cardinal principles contained in the text constituting the fabric of humanitarian law”, constituting “intransgressible principles of international customary law” [ICJ, Nuclear Weapons Case, § 78; Kordić and Čerkez Appeal Judgement, § 54]. According to the principle of distinction, warring parties must at all times distinguish between the civilian population and combatants, between civilian and military objectives, and accordingly direct attacks only against military objectives [Kordić and Čerkez Appeal Judgement, § 54]. These principles establish an absolute prohibition on the targeting of civilians in customary international law [Blaškić Appeal Judgement, § 109] but do not exclude the possibility of legitimate civilian casualties incidental to the conduct of military operations. However, those casualties must not be disproportionate to the concrete and direct military advantage anticipated before the attack (the principle of proportionality).
191. … [T]he Trial Chamber considered that Article 51(2) of Additional Protocol I “states in a clear language that civilians and the civilian population as such should not be the object of attack”, that this principle “does not mention any exceptions”, and in particular that it “does not contemplate derogating from this rule by invoking military necessity.” It then held that Article 51(2) “explicitly confirms the customary rule that civilians must enjoy general protection against the danger arising from hostilities” and “stems from a fundamental principle of international humanitarian law, the principle of distinction, which obliges warring parties to distinguish at all times between the civilian population and combatants and between civilian objects and military objectives and accordingly to direct their operations only against military objectives”. The Trial Chamber also considered that:
[o]nce the military character of a target has been ascertained, commanders must consider whether striking this target is “expected to cause incidental loss of life, injury to civilians, damage to civilian objectives or a combination thereof, which would be excessive in relation to the concrete and direct military advantage anticipated.”
192. The Appeals Chamber is satisfied that the Trial Chamber correctly assessed the legality of the incidents. 
ICTY, Galić case, Judgment on Appeal, 30 November 2006, §§ 190–192.

In the Kordić and Čerkez case before the ICTY in 1998, the accused were charged with “unlawful attack on civilians” in violation of the laws or customs of war. 
ICTY, Kordić and Čerkez case, First Amended Indictment, 30 September 1998, §§ 40 and 41, Counts 3 and 5.

Prohibited attacks are those launched deliberately against civilians … in the course of an armed conflict and are not justified by military necessity. They must have caused deaths and/or serious bodily injuries within the civilian population … Such attacks are in direct contravention of the prohibitions expressly recognised in international law including the relevant provisions of Additional Protocol I. 
ICTY, Kordić and Čerkez case, Judgment, 26 February 2001, § 328.

The Tribunal found the accused guilty of “a violation of the laws or customs of war, as recognised by Article 3 [of the 1993 ICTY Statute] (unlawful attack on civilians)”. 
ICTY, Kordić and Čerkez case, Judgment, 26 February 2001, Section V, Disposition.

[A]ttacks in violation of Articles 51 [Protection of the civilian population] and 52 [General protection of civilian objects] of Additional Protocol I are clearly unlawful even without causing serious harm. … [However], the Appeals Chamber finds that at the time the unlawful attack occurred in this case, there was no basis for finding that, as a matter of customary international law, State practice or opinio iuris translated the prohibitions under Articles 51 and 52 of Additional Protocol I into international crimes, such that unlawful attacks were largely penalized regardless of the showing of a serious result. State practice was not settled as some required the showing of serious injury, death or damage as a result under their national penal legislation, while others did not. …[T]he Appeals Chamber is not satisfied that at the relevant time, a violation of Articles 51 and 52 of Additional Protocol I incurred individual criminal responsibility under Article 3 of the [of the 1993 ICTY] Statute without causing death, serious injury to body or health, or results listed in Article 3 of the Statute, or being of the same gravity. 
ICTY, Kordić and Čerkez case, Judgment on Appeal, 17 December 2004, §§ 65–67.

In its judgment in the Kupreškić case in 2000, the ICTY Trial Chamber stated:
The protection of civilians in time of armed conflict, whether international or internal, is the bedrock of modern humanitarian law … Indeed, it is now a universally recognised principle, recently restated by the International Court of Justice [in the Nuclear Weapons case], that deliberate attacks on civilians or civilian objects are absolutely prohibited by international humanitarian law. 
ICTY, Kupreškić case, Judgment, 14 January 2000, § 521.

In the Slobodan Milošević case before the ICTY in 2002, the accused, a former president of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, was charged, inter alia, with two counts of attacks on civilians as violations of the laws or customs of war “recognised by Article 51(2) of Additional Protocol I and Article 13(2) of Additional Protocol II to the Geneva Conventions of 1949, punishable under Articles 3 and 7(1) and 7(3) of the [1993 ICTY] Statute”. 
ICTY, Slobodan Milošević case, Second Amended Indictment (Croatia), 23 October 2002, §§ 73–76, Count 27; ICTY, Slobodan Milošević case, Amended Indictment (Bosnia and Herzegovina), 22 November 2002, §§ 43–45, Count 29.

In the Miodrag Jokić case in 2003, the accused, a senior officer in the Yugoslav Navy, was charged with six counts of violations of the laws or customs of war, among them attacks on civilians (“as recognised by Article 51 of Additional Protocol I and Article 13 of Additional Protocol II to the Geneva Conventions of 1949, punishable under Article[…] 3 … of the Statute of the Tribunal”), for his role in the shelling of Dubrovnik on 6 December 1991. The accused was charged as an aider and abettor under Article 7(1) of the 1993 ICTY Statute and, alternatively, under Article 7(3) of the 1993 ICTY Statute for command responsibility. 
ICTY, Miodrag Jokić case, Second Amended Indictment, 27 August 2003, §§ 11–16, Count 3.

42. Three of the crimes to which [the accused] has pleaded guilty entail violations of the duty incumbent upon soldiers to direct their operations only against military objectives. In order to comply with this duty, the military must distinguish civilians from combatants and refrain from targeting the former. The other three crimes entail violations of the duty to distinguish civilian objects from military objectives and not to attack protected objects.

44. The Galić Trial Chamber found that an unlawful attack on civilians giving rise to deaths or injuries is an extremely serious violation “transgressing a core principle of international humanitarian law.” 
ICTY, Miodrag Jokić case, Sentencing Judgment, 18 March 2004, §§ 42 and 44.

In the Strugar case before the ICTY in 2003, the accused, a Commander in the Yugoslav People’s Army (JNA), was charged, inter alia, with attacks on civilians as a violation of the laws or customs of war (Article 3 of the 1993 ICTY Statute), for his role in conducting a military campaign against the Dubrovnik region of Croatia. 
ICTY, Strugar case, Third Amended Indictment, 10 December 2003, §§ 14–18, Count 3.

17. … Articles 51 and 52 of Additional Protocol I and Article 13 of Additional Protocol II do not contain new principles. They recite earlier codes. The Fourth Geneva Convention expanded in detail many rules of customary international law and The Hague rules relating to civilians. The prohibition of attacks on civilian populations was qualified as a rule of customary international law in 1938, by former British Prime Minister A.N. Chamberlain. This position was subsequently formulated in a resolution that was unanimously adopted by the Assembly of the League of Nations the same year. The United Nations General Assembly again embodied these principles it considered general humanitarian principles in Resolution 2444. The ICJ considered [these] type of statements to represent the opinio juris of the states passing the Resolution and held that these rules reflect “elementary considerations of humanity” applicable under customary law to any armed conflict, whether it is of an internal or international character.
18. At the time of the adoption of the Additional Protocols, the overwhelming majority of states regarded the principles enunciated in Articles 51 and 52 of Additional Protocol I and in Article 13 of Additional Protocol II as general humanitarian principles. These [were later] embodied in some States’ military manuals and contrary practice has consistently met disapproval.
19. The drafting history of the Additional Protocols also clearly indicates the opinio juris of the States. It leaves no doubt that Article 51 of Additional Protocol I entitled “Protection of the Civilian Population” and comprised of eight paragraphs provides for a customary principle of protection of civilians against armed conflict in its first paragraph. …
20. Article 13 of Additional Protocol II entitled “Protection of the Civilian Population” contains three paragraphs which [mirror] the first three paragraphs of Article 51 of Additional Protocol I. It is emphasized that Article 1 of Additional Protocol II states that Additional Protocol II applies to conflict not covered by Additional Protocol I.
21. The Trial Chamber has no doubt that Articles 51 and 52 of Additional Protocol I and Article 13 of Additional Protocol II constitute a reaffirmation and reformulation … of the existing norms of customary international law, which prohibit attacks on civilians and civilian objects. 
ICTY, Strugar case, Decision on Jurisdiction, 7 June 2002, §§ 17–21.

[T]he Trial made no error in its finding that, as the Appeals Chamber understood it, the principles prohibiting attacks on civilians and unlawful attacks on civilian objects stated in Articles 51 and 52 of Additional Protocol I and Article 13 of Additional Protocol II are principles of customary international humanitarian law. Customary international law establishes that a violation of these principles entails individual criminal responsibility. 
ICTY, Strugar case, Decision on Interlocutory Appeal, 22 November 2002, § 10.

[T]he crime of attacks on civilians is, as to the actus reus, an attack launched against a civilian population that caused deaths and/or serious bodily injury within that population, which, as to the mens rea, must have been conducted “intentionally in the knowledge, or when it was impossible not to know, that civilians were being targeted”. The presence of certain non-civilians among the targeted population does not change the character of that population. It must be of a “predominantly civilian nature”. The following attacks are, among others, prohibited by Article 51: attacks the object of which is “the civilian population as such, as well as individual civilians” … indiscriminate attacks, such as those which “are of a nature to strike military objectives and civilians or civilian objects without distinction” … and those which “may be expected to cause incidental loss of civilian life, injury to civilians, damage to civilian objects, or a combination thereof, which would be excessive in relation to the concrete and direct military advantage anticipated”. 
ICTY, Strugar case, Rule 98bis Decision, 21 June 2004, § 50.

220. … Article 51 of Additional Protocol I and Article 13 of Additional Protocol II, on which Count 3 is based, clearly set out a rule of international humanitarian law… [T]he Chamber recalls the ruling given in the present case and upheld by the Appeals Chamber, according to which the prohibition of attacks on civilians stated in the Additional Protocols attained the status of customary international law and the Additional Protocols’ provisions at issue constitute a reaffirmation and reformulation of the existing customary norms. It is to be noted that the Additional Protocols relate to specific types of armed conflicts. However, the prohibition of attacks on civilians is included in both Additional Protocols, of which Protocol I deals with international armed conflicts and Protocol II with non-international armed conflicts. Therefore, the nature of the conflict is of no relevance to the applicability of Article 3 of the [1993 ICTY] Statute. …
221. … [T]he prohibition of attacks on civilians is one of the elementary rules governing the conduct of war and undoubtedly protects “important values”. The Chamber considers that any breach of this prohibition encroaches upon the fundamental principle of the distinction between combatants and non-combatants. This principle has developed throughout the history of armed conflict with the purpose of keeping civilians from the danger arising from hostilities. The Chamber points out that attacks on civilians jeopardise the lives or health of persons who do not take active part in combat. It is of the view that the imminent risk of falling victim of an unlawful attack is in itself an acute experience for civilians, who, unarmed and defenceless, find themselves facing an army that has chosen them as its target. The Chamber emphasises that the categorical nature of the prohibition of such attacks and its prominent place among the rules of international humanitarian law make it evident that the purpose of this prohibition is not only to save lives of civilians, but also to spare them from the risk of being subjected to war atrocities. The Chamber is of the opinion that the experiencing of such a risk by a civilian is in itself a grave consequence of an unlawful attack, even if he or she, luckily, survives the attack with no physical injury. 
ICTY, Strugar case, Judgment, 31 January 2005, §§ 220–221.

In its judgment in 2008, the Appeals Chamber considered the mens rea requirement for the crime of attacks on civilians as a violation of the laws or customs of war (Article 3 of the 1993 ICTY Statute). The Appeals Chamber stated:
270. The Appeals Chamber has previously ruled that the perpetrator of the crime of attack on civilians must undertake the attack “wilfully” and that the latter incorporates “wrongful intent, or recklessness, [but] not ‘mere negligence’”. [Galić case, Judgement on Appeal, § 140] In other words, the mens rea requirement is met if it has been shown that the acts of violence which constitute this crime were wilfully directed against civilians, that is, either deliberately against them or through recklessness. The Appeals Chamber considers that this definition encompasses both the notions of “direct intent” and “indirect intent” mentioned by the Trial Chamber, and referred to by Strugar, as the mens rea element of an attack against civilians.
271. As specified by the Trial Chamber in the Galić case,
For the mens rea recognized by [1977] Additional Protocol I to be proven, the Prosecution must show that the perpetrator was aware or should have been aware of the civilian status of the persons attacked. …
The intent to target civilians can be proved through inferences from direct or circumstantial evidence. There is no requirement of the intent to attack particular civilians; rather it is prohibited to make the civilian population as such, as well as individual civilians, the object of an attack. The determination of whether civilians were targeted is a case-by-case analysis, based on a variety of factors, including the means and method used in the course of the attack, the distance between the victims and the source of fire, the ongoing combat activity at the time and location of the incident, the presence of military activities or facilities in the vicinity of the incident, the sta tus of the victims as well as their appearance, and the nature of the crimes committed in the course of the attack.  
ICTY, Strugar case, Judgment on Appeal, 17 July 2008, §§ 270–271.
[footnotes in original omitted]
In the Perišić case before the ICTY in 2005, the accused, Momčilo Perišić, was charged, inter alia, with attacks on civilians, a violation of the laws or customs of war (“recognised by Article 51(2) of Additional Protocol 1 and Article 13(2) of Additional Protocol II to the Geneva Conventions of 1949, punishable under Article […] 3 … of the Statute of the Tribunal”), for various acts alleged to have been committed while he was Chief of the General Staff of the Yugoslav Army (VJ) between 1993 and 1998. 
ICTY, Perišić case, Amended Indictment, 26 September 2005, §§ 46, 54, and 62, Counts 3, 4, 5, 7 and 8.

40. Between August 1993 and November 1995 [the accused] aided and abetted the planning, preparation, or execution of a military campaign of artillery and mortar shelling and sniping onto civilian areas of Sarajevo and upon its civilian population, killing and wounding thousands of civilians.

47. [For his omissions in relation to crimes perpetrated in Zagreb when] [o]n 2 May 1995 and 3 May 1995 Milan Martić [President of the Republic of Serbian Krajina and Supreme Commander of the Army of the Serbian Krajina] planned, instigated, ordered, committed or otherwise aided and abetted the planning, preparation, and execution of the shelling of civilian areas in the city of Zagreb and upon its civilian population.

51. The shelling [of Zagreb] was not justified by military necessity. The affected locations were either specifically targeted or the result of reckless fire into areas where civilians were known to have been. 
ICTY, Perišić case, Amended Indictment, 26 September 2005, §§ 40, 47 and 51.

In the Dragomir Milošević case before the ICTY in 2006, the accused was charged, inter alia, with unlawful attacks on civilians as a violation of the laws or customs of war, punishable under Article 51 of the 1977 Additional Protocol I and Article 13 of the 1977 Additional Protocol II and Articles 3, 7(1) and 7(3) of the 1993 ICTY Statute. According to the amended indictment of 18 December 2006:
From on or about 10 August 1994 to on or about 21 November 1995, Dragomir Milošević, as Commander of Bosnian Serb forces comprising or attached to the Sarajevo Romanija Corps and/or forces affiliated with the VRS [Army of Republika Srpska], conducted a coordinated and protracted campaign of sniper attacks upon the civilian population of Sarajevo, killing and wounding a large number of civilians of all ages and both sexes, such attacks by their nature involving the deliberate and/or indiscriminate targeting of civilians with direct fire weapons. 
ICTY, Dragomir Milošević case, Prosecution’s Submission of Amended Indictment Pursuant to Rule 50 and Trial Chamber’s Decision dated 12 December 2006, 18 December 2006, § 23.

Wherever a violation of the laws or customs of war … is charged in this Indictment, the acts or omissions had a nexus to the hostilities and were directed against civilian persons not taking an active part in hostilities. Article 51 of Additional Protocol 1 to the Geneva Conventions which prohibits unlawful attacks against civilians, including the prohibition of terror, was applicable to the parties to this armed conflict by virtue of the International Committee of the Red Cross (“ICRC”) Special Agreement signed by the Parties on 22 May 1992. Alternatively, Article 13 of Additional Protocol II to the Geneva Conventions, prohibiting unlawful attacks against civilians, including the prohibition of terror, was applicable to the parties. In the further alternative, the prohibition of unlawful attacks against civilians, including the prohibition of terror, was applicable to the parties by virtue of customary international law. 
ICTY, Dragomir Milošević case, Prosecution’s Submission of Amended Indictment Pursuant to Rule 50 and Trial Chamber’s Decision dated 12 December 2006, 18 December 2006, § 28.

Article 51(2) of Additional Protocol I and Article 13(2) of Additional Protocol II clearly state that civilians and the civilian population should not be the object of attacks. There is an unconditional and absolute prohibition on the targeting of civilians in customary international law. Therefore, any attack directed at the civilian population is prohibited, regardless of the military motive. 
ICTY, Dragomir Milošević case, Judgment, 12 December 2007, § 944.
[emphasis in original]
In its judgment in 2009, the Appeals Chamber distinguished the crime of unlawful attacks against civilians from the crime of terror, stating:
With respect to the offence of unlawful attacks against civilians, the Appeals Chamber recalls that it requires proof of death or serious injury to body or health, which … is not per se an element of the crime of terror. Conversely, the offence of terror requires proof of an intent to spread terror among the civilian population which is not an element of the crime of unlawful attacks against civilians. 
ICTY, Dragomir Milošević case, Judgment on Appeal, 12 November 2009, § 39.

53. … [I]t is well established that the principle of distinction requires parties to distinguish at all times “between the civilian population and combatants, between civilian and military objectives, and accordingly direct attacks only against military objectives”. [Galić case, Judgement on Appeal, § 190] There is an absolute prohibition against the targeting of civilians in customary international law, encompassing indiscriminate attacks. As stated in the Galić Appeal Judgement,
[…] Article 51(2) of [the 1977] Additional Protocol I “states in a clear language that civilians and the civilian population as such should not be the object of attack”, that this principle “does not mention any exceptions”, and in particular that it “does not contemplate derogating from this rule by invoking military necessity.” […] Article 51(2) “explicitly confirms the customary rule that civilians must enjoy general protection against the danger arising from hostilities” and “stems from a fundamental principle of international humanitarian law, the principle of distinction, which obliges warring parties to distinguish at all times between the civilian population and combatants and between civilian objects and military objectives and accordingly to direct their operations only against military objectives”. [Galić case, Judgement on Appeal, § 191]
54. There is no requirement that particular areas or zones be designated as civilian or military in nature. Rather, a distinction is to be made between the civilian population and combatants, or between civilian and military objectives. Such distinctions must be made on a case-by-case basis. 
ICTY, Dragomir Milošević case, Judgment on Appeal, 12 November 2009, §§ 53–54.
[footnotes in original omitted; emphasis in original]
In its final report to the ICTY Prosecutor in 2000, the Committee Established to Review the 1999 NATO Bombing Campaign Against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia stated:
Attacks which are not directed against military objectives (particularly attacks directed against the civilian population) … may constitute the actus reus for the offense of unlawful attack [as a violation of the laws and customs of war]. The mens rea for the offense is intention or recklessness, not simple negligence. 
ICTY, Final Report to the Prosecutor by the Committee Established to Review the NATO Bombing Campaign Against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, The Hague, 14 June 2000, § 28.

Special Court for Sierra Leone
In the Fofana and Kondewa case before the SCSL in 2007, the accused, senior members of the Civil Defence Forces (CDF), were convicted, inter alia, of the crimes of murder, cruel treatment and pillage, pursuant to Article 3 of the 2002 Statute of the Special Court for Sierra Leone. In its judgment in 2008, the Appeals Chamber considered the principle of distinction. The Appeals Chamber stated:
247. … [T]he absolute prohibition under international customary and conventional law on targeting civilians precludes military necessity or any other purpose as a justification. The Appeals Chamber holds that it is no justification that the perpetrators of a crime against humanity were fighting for the restoration of democracy.

300. … When the target of an attack is the civilian population, the purpose of that attack is immaterial. 
SCSL, Fofana and Kondewa case, Judgment on Appeal, 28 May 2008, §§ 247 and 300.

Eritrea-Ethiopia Claims Commission
In its Western Front, Aerial Bombardment and Related Claims (Eritrea’s Claim) partial award in 2005, the Eritrea-Ethiopia Claims Commission, in considering the prohibition on attacks against civilians, stated:
Even in areas where combat is occurring, civilians … cannot lawfully be made objects of attack … The provisions of [the 1977 Additional] Geneva Protocol I … express customary international humanitarian law. Those provisions … prohibit targeting civilians. 
Eritrea-Ethiopia Claims Commission, Western Front, Aerial Bombardment and Related Claims, Eritrea’s Claim, Partial Award, 19 December 2005, §§ 27 and 95.
[footnotes in original omitted]
Inter-American Commission on Human Rights
In 1997, in the case concerning the events at La Tablada in Argentina, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights reaffirmed the obligation of the contending parties, on the basis of common Article 3 of the 1949 Geneva Conventions and customary principles applicable to all armed conflicts, not to engage in direct attacks against the civilian population or individual civilians. 
Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, Case 11.137 (Argentina), Report, 18 November 1997, § 177.

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ICRC
To fulfil its task of disseminating IHL, the ICRC has delegates around the world teaching armed and security forces that “civilian persons may not be attacked unless they participate directly in hostilities” and that an “attack on the civilian population or individual civilian persons” constitutes a grave breach of the law of war. 
Frédéric de Mulinen, Handbook on the Law of War for Armed Forces, ICRC, Geneva, 1987, §§ 208 and 778(b).

In an appeal issued in October 1973, the ICRC urged all the belligerents in the conflict in the Middle East (Egypt, Iraq, Israel and the Syrian Arab Republic) to observe forthwith, in particular, the provisions of, inter alia, Article 46(1) of draft of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, which stated: “The civilian population as such, as well as individual civilians, shall not be made the object of attack.” All governments concerned replied favourably. 
ICRC, The International Committee’s Action in the Middle East, IRRC, No. 152, 1973, pp. 584–585.

In an appeal issued in 1979 with respect to the conflict in Rhodesia/Zimbabwe, the ICRC called on all the parties to the conflict to “cease all attacks against the civilian population in the war-affected areas”. It also specifically requested that the Transitional Government in Salisbury “abstain from attacking civilians in the course of military operations in neighbouring countries”. 
ICRC, Conflict in Southern Africa: ICRC appeal, 19 March 1979, §§ 5 and 6, IRRC, No. 209, 1979, pp. 88–89.

In a press release issued in 1985 concerning the bombardment of civilians in the Iran–Iraq War, the President of the ICRC stated: “The bombardment of civilians is one of the very gravest violations of international humanitarian law.” 
ICRC, Press Release No. 1506, Bombardment of civilians in the Iran–Iraq conflict: An appeal by the President of the ICRC, 28 May 1985.

In a press release issued in 1987, the ICRC made a solemn appeal to the Iranian and Iraqi governments “once again strongly urging them to put an end to the bombing and attacks on civilians”. The press release described the appeal as “the latest in a series of attempts by the ICRC to remind Iran and Iraq that the bombing and attacks on civilians constitute a grave violation of international humanitarian law and of customary law, which totally prohibit such practices”. 
ICRC, Press Release No. 1532, Iran–Iraq Conflict: The ICRC Solemnly Appeals, 13 February 1987.

In a Memorandum on the Applicability of International Humanitarian Law sent in 1990 to all States party to the Geneva Conventions in the context of the Gulf War, the ICRC stated: “The following general rules are recognized as binding on any party to an armed conflict: … It is forbidden to attack civilian persons.” 
ICRC, Memorandum on the Applicability of International Humanitarian Law, 14 December 1990, § II, IRRC, No. 280, 1991, p. 24.

In 1991, the ICRC appealed to the parties to the conflict in the former Yugoslavia “not to direct any attack against the civilian population”. 
ICRC, Appeal in behalf of civilians in Yugoslavia, Geneva, 4 October 1991.

On several occasions in 1992, the ICRC called on the parties to the conflict in Afghanistan not to target civilians and facilities used only by the civilian population and to spare civilian persons and objects. 
ICRC, Press Release No. 1712, Afghanistan: ICRC appeal for compliance with humanitarian rules, 5 May 1992; Press Release No. 1724, Kabul: ICRC urges respect for civilians as medical facilities struggle to cope, 20 July 1992; Press Release No. 1726, Afghanistan: New ICRC appeal for compliance with humanitarian rules, 14 August 1992.

In a press release in 1992, the ICRC enjoined the parties to the conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina “not to direct any attack against the civilian population”. 
ICRC, Press Release No. 1705, Bosnia-Herzegovina: ICRC calls for protection of civilians, 10 April 1992.

In a communication to the press in 1993, the ICRC stated that its delegates in Bosnia and Herzegovina were once more witnessing “blatant violations of the basic principles of international humanitarian law”, citing the targeting of the civilian population as an example. 
ICRC, Communication to the Press No. 93/16, Bosnia-Herzegovina: The ICRC appeals for humanity, 16 June 1993.

In a communication to the press in 1993, the ICRC enjoined the parties to the conflict in Somalia not to “attack civilians or facilities used by the civilian population”. 
ICRC, Communication to the Press No. 93/17, Somalia: ICRC appeals for compliance with international humanitarian law, 17 June 1993.

In a communication to the press in 1993, the ICRC reminded the parties to the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh of their obligation “to refrain from attacking civilians”. 
ICRC, Communication to the Press No. 93/25, Nagorno-Karabakh conflict: 60,000 civilians flee fighting in south-western Azerbaijan, 19 August 1993.

In a communication to the press in 1993, the ICRC reminded the parties to the conflict in Georgia of their obligation “to refrain from attacking civilians”. 
ICRC, Communication to the Press No. 93/31, Georgia: ICRC Activities in Abkhazia, 20 September 1993.

In 1994, in a Memorandum on Respect for International Humanitarian Law in Angola, the ICRC stated: “Attacks on civilians or civilian objects are prohibited.” 
ICRC, Memorandum on Respect for International Humanitarian Law in Angola, 8 June 1994, § II, IRRC, No. 320, 1997, p. 503.

In 1994, in a Memorandum on Compliance with International Humanitarian Law by the Forces Participating in Opération Turquoise in the Great Lakes region, the ICRC stated: “It is prohibited to direct attacks against civilian persons.” 
ICRC, Memorandum on Compliance with International Humanitarian Law by the Forces Participating in Opération Turquoise, 23 June 1994, § II, reprinted in Marco Sassòli and Antoine A. Bouvier, How Does Law Protect in War?, ICRC, Geneva, 1999, p. 1308.

In a press release issued in 1994 in the context of the conflict in Yemen, the ICRC stated: “Attacks against civilians and civilian property are prohibited.” 
ICRC, Press Release No. 1773, Fighting in Yemen, 9 May 1994; see also Press Release No. 1775, Yemen: ICRC active on both sides appeals to belligerents, 12 May 1994.

In a working paper on war crimes submitted in 1997 to the Preparatory Committee for the Establishment of an International Criminal Court, the ICRC proposed that the war crime of “making the civilian population or individual civilians the object of attack” be subject to the jurisdiction of the Court with respect to international armed conflicts and that the war crime of “attacks directed against the civilian population as such, or individual civilians” be subject to the jurisdiction of the Court with respect to non-international armed conflicts. 
ICRC, Working paper on war crimes submitted to the Preparatory Committee for the Establishment of an International Criminal Court, New York, 14 February 1997, §§ 1(b)(i) and 3(vi).

In a communication to the press in 2000, the ICRC reminded both the Sri Lankan security forces and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) of their obligation to comply with IHL, which provided for the protection of the civilian population against the effects of the hostilities. The ICRC called on both parties to ensure that the civilian population and civilian property were protected and respected at all times. 
ICRC, Communication to the Press No. 00/13, Sri Lanka: ICRC urges both parties to respect civilians, 11 May 2000.

In a communication to the press in 2000 in connection with the hostilities in the Near East, the ICRC stated that attacks directed against the civilian population were “absolutely and unconditionally prohibited” and that “the use of weapons of war against unarmed civilians cannot be authorized”. 
ICRC, Communication to the Press No. 00/42, ICRC appeal to all involved in violence in the Near East, 21 November 2000.

In a communication to the press in 2001 in connection with the conflict in Afghanistan, the ICRC stated: “Attacks directed at civilians are prohibited.” 
ICRC, Communication to the Press No. 01/47, Afghanistan: ICRC calls on all parties to the conflict to respect international humanitarian law, 24 October 2001.

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Oppenheim
Oppenheim states: “The immunity of non-combatants from direct attack is one of the fundamental rules of the International Law of War. It is a rule which applies with absolute cogency alike to warfare on land, at sea, and in the air.” 
Lassa Oppenheim, International Law. A Treatise, Vol. II, Disputes, War and Neutrality, Sixth edition, revised, Hersch Lauterpacht (ed.), Longmans, Green and Co., London/New York/Toronto, 1944, p. 413, § 214ea.

Institute of International Law
In a resolution adopted at its Edinburgh Session in 1969, the Institute of International Law recalled: “Existing international law prohibits all armed attacks on the civilian populations as such, as well as on non-military objects, notably dwellings or other buildings sheltering the civilian population.” 
Institute of International Law, Edinburgh Session, Resolution on the Distinction between Military Objectives and Non-military Objects in General and Particularly the Problems Associated with Weapons of Mass Destruction, 9 September 1969, § 4.

Americas Watch
In 1985, in a report on violations of the laws of war in Nicaragua, Americas Watch stated:
However, although [common] Article 3 [of the 1949 Geneva Conventions] contains no provision providing explicit protection for the civilian population against attacks or their effects, Article 3’s prohibition of “violence to life and person” against “persons taking no active part in the hostilities” is broad enough to include attacks against civilians in territory controlled by an adverse party in an internal armed conflict … Certain general principles of the customary law of armed conflict were recognized in U.N. General Assembly Resolution 2444 (XXIII), 13 January 1969, which was adopted by unanimous vote. This resolution affirms … that it is prohibited to launch attacks against the civilian population as such … Further, the U.S. Government has expressly recognized these general principles “as declaratory of existing customary international law.” The ICRC also lists these principles among the fundamental rules of international humanitarian law applicable in all armed conflicts. Thus, attacks by Nicaraguan government or contra forces directed against unarmed civilians undertaken with the knowledge that no military objective was present would constitute a violation of the customary international law of armed conflict. Under this circumstance, such deaths would be regarded as civilian murders and not as unavoidable collateral civilian casualties. 
Americas Watch, Violations of the Laws of War by Both Sides in Nicaragua: 1981–1985, New York, March 1985, pp. 18–21.
[emphasis in original]
Africa Watch
In 1989, in a report on violations of the laws of war in Angola, Africa Watch stated:
Although [common] Article 3 [of the 1949 Geneva Conventions] does not, by its terms, prohibit attacks against the civilian population in non-international armed conflicts, such attacks are prohibited by the customary laws of armed conflict. United Nations General Assembly Resolution 2444, Respect for Human Rights in Armed Conflicts … adopted by unanimous vote on December 19, 1969, expressly recognized this customary principle of civilian immunity and its complementary principle requiring the warring parties to distinguish civilians from combatants at all times … Furthermore, the International Committee of the Red Cross has long regarded these principles as basic rules of the laws of war that apply in all armed conflicts. The United States government also has expressly recognized these principles as declaratory of existing customary international law. 
Africa Watch, Angola: Violations of the Laws of War by Both Sides, New York, April 1989, p. 126.

Turku Declaration of Minimum Humanitarian Standards
The Turku Declaration of Minimum Humanitarian Standards, adopted by an expert meeting convened by the Institute for Human Rights of Åbo Akademi University in Turku/Åbo, Finland in 1990, states: “Attacks against persons not taking part in acts of violence shall be prohibited in all circumstances.” 
Turku Declaration of Minimum Humanitarian Standards, adopted by an expert meeting convened by the Institute for Human Rights, Åbo Akademi University, Turku/Åbo, 30 November–2 December 1990, Article 5(1), IRRC, No. 282, 1991, p. 332.

International Institute of Humanitarian Law
The Rules of International Humanitarian Law Governing the Conduct of Hostilities in Non-international Armed Conflicts, adopted in 1990 by the Council of the International Institute of Humanitarian Law, provides: “The prohibition of attacks against the civilian population as such or against individual civilians is a general rule applicable in non-international armed conflicts.” The commentary on this rule notes that it is based on Article 25 of the Hague Regulations, UN General Assembly Resolutions 2444 (XXIII) and 2675 (XXV), and Article 13(2) of the 1977 Additional Protocol II. It adds that attacks against civilians are also incompatible with the rule on the protection of the life and person of those taking no active part in hostilities as set out in common Article 3 of the 1949 Geneva Conventions. 
International Institute of Humanitarian Law, Rules of International Humanitarian Law Governing the Conduct of Hostilities in Non-international Armed Conflicts, Rule A2 and Commentary, IRRC, No. 278, 1990, pp. 388–389.

Helsinki Watch
In 1992, in a report on war crimes committed in the conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Helsinki Watch stated:
United Nations General Assembly Resolution 2444, adopted by unanimous vote on December 19, 1969, expressly recognized the customary law principle of civilian immunity and its complementary principle requiring the warring parties to distinguish civilians from combatants at all times. 
Helsinki Watch, War Crimes in Bosnia-Hercegovina, Vol. I, New York, August 1992, p. 203.

Amnesty International
In 2000, in a report on the NATO bombings in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Amnesty International dealt with some cases that were selected because there was “evidence that civilians were victims of either direct or indiscriminate attacks, in violation of international humanitarian law”. 
Amnesty International, NATO/Federal Republic of Yugoslavia: “Collateral Damage” or Unlawful Killings? Violations of the Laws of War by NATO during Operation Allied Force, AI Index EUR 70/18/00, London, June 2000, p. 30.

In 2001, in a report on Israel and the occupied territories, Amnesty International stated:
It is a basic rule of customary international law that civilians and civilian objects must never be made the targets of an attack. This rule applies in all circumstances including in the midst of full-scale armed conflict. Due to its customary nature it is binding on all parties. Israel is prohibited from attacking civilians and civilian objects. Palestinians are also prohibited from targeting Israeli civilians, including settlers who are not bearing arms, and civilian objects. 
Amnesty International, Israel and the Occupied Territories: State Assassinations and Other Unlawful Killings, AI Index MDE 15/005/2001, London, 21 February 2001, p. 2; see also p. 29.

DRC Pledge of Commitment
In 2008, the armed groups party to the DRC Pledge of Commitment, “deeply deploring the insecurity that has prevailed for a long time in the province of North Kivu, causing massive displacements of populations and enormous suffering of civilians as well as massive violations of human rights”, made a commitment to strictly observe “rules of international humanitarian law and human rights law, notably … [t]o halt acts of violence [and] abuse … in any form, against the civilian population.” 
Acte d’engagement signé par le CNDP-Mouvement Politico-Militaire, la PARECO/FAP, les Mai-Mai Kasindien, les Mai-Mai Kifuafua, les Mai-Mai Vurondo, les Mai-Mai Mongol, l’UJPS, les Mai-Mai Rwenzori et le Simba avec l’engagement solennel des Représentants de la Communauté Internationale, facilitateurs du présent acte d’engagement – les Nations-Unies, la Conférence Internationale sur la Région des Grands Lacs, les Etats-Unis d’Amérique, l’Union Africaine, l’Union Européenne et le Gouvernement (Pledge of Commitment signed by the CNDP-Mouvement Politico-Militaire, PARECO/FAP, Mai-Mai Kasindien, Mai-Mai Kifuafua, Mai-Mai Vurondo, Mai-Mai Mongol, UJPS, Mai-Mai Rwenzori and Simba with the solemn commitment of the representatives of the international community, facilitators of this pledge of commitment – the United Nations, the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, the United States of America, the European Union and the Government), Goma, 23 January 2008, Preamble and Article III, §§ 1–5.