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Name, rank, date of birth, serial number and the right to remain silent

31-12-2005 Article, International Review of the Red Cross, No. 860, by Robin Geiss

This article analyses recurring misconceptions about the questioning of prisoners of war.


Robin Geiss,
Ph.D., LL.M. (NYU), currently works as a research fellow at the Bucerius Law School, Hamburg. 

The author takes a twofold approach, first considering matters relating to the identification of prisoners of war, namely contemporary issues such as the use of modern identification techniques, and then discussing interrogation procedures that go beyond the establishment of a prisoner’s identity. In this context particular attention is given to the question whether and, if so, at which point in time a prisoner of war starts to benefit from fair trial rights, namely the right to remain silent, the right not to incriminate oneself and the corresponding right to be informed about these fair trial protections.  

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