Article 1. The High Contracting
Parties undertake to respect and to ensure respect for the present
Convention in all circumstances.
Art. 2. In addition to the provisions
which shall be implemented in peace-time, the present Convention shall apply
to all cases of declared war or of any other armed conflict which may arise
between two or more of the High Contracting Parties, even if the state of
war is not recognized by one of them.
The Convention shall also apply to all cases of partial or total
occupation of the territory of a High Contracting Party, even if the said
occupation meets with no armed resistance.
Although one of the Powers in conflict may not be a party to the present
Convention, the Powers who are parties thereto shall remain bound by it in
their mutual relations. They shall furthermore be bound by the Convention in
relation to the said Power, if the latter accepts and applies the provisions
Art. 3. In the case of armed
conflict not of an international character occurring in the territory of one
of the High Contracting Parties, each Party to the conflict shall be bound
to apply, as a minimum, the following provisions:
(1) Persons taking no active part in the hostilities, including
members of armed forces who have laid down their arms and those placed
hors de combat by sickness, wounds, detention, or any other cause, shall
in all circumstances be treated humanely, without any adverse
distinction founded on race, colour, religion or faith, sex, birth or
wealth, or any other similar criteria.
To this end the following acts are and shall remain prohibited at any
time and in any place whatsoever with respect to the above-mentioned
(a) violence to life and person, in particular murder of all
kinds, mutilation, cruel treatment and torture;
(b) taking of
(c) outrages upon personal dignity, in particular
humiliating and degrading treatment;
(d) the passing of sentences and
the carrying out of executions without previous judgment pronounced by a
regularly constituted court, affording all the judicial guarantees which
are recognized as indispensable by civilized peoples.
(2) The wounded and sick shall be collected and cared for.
An impartial humanitarian body, such as the International Committee of
the Red Cross, may offer its services to the Parties to the conflict.
The Parties to the conflict should further endeavour to bring into force,
by means of special agreements, all or part of the other provisions of the
The application of the preceding provisions shall not affect the legal
status of the Parties to the conflict.
Art. 4. Persons protected by the
Convention are those who, at a given moment and in any manner whatsoever,
find themselves, in case of a conflict or occupation, in the hands of a
Party to the conflict or Occupying Power of which they are not nationals.
Nationals of a State which is not bound by the Convention are not
protected by it. Nationals of a neutral State who find themselves in the
territory of a belligerent State, and nationals of a co-belligerent State,
shall not be regarded as protected persons while the State of which they are
nationals has normal diplomatic representation in the State in whose hands
The provisions of Part II are, however, wider in application, as defined
in Article 13.
Persons protected by the Geneva Convention for the Amelioration of the
Condition of the Wounded and Sick in Armed Forces in the Field of 12 August
1949, or by the Geneva Convention for the Amelioration of the Condition of
Wounded, Sick and Shipwrecked Members of Armed Forces at Sea of 12 August
1949, or by the Geneva Convention relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of
War of 12 August 1949, shall not be considered as protected persons within
the meaning of the present Convention.
Art. 5 Where in the territory of a
Party to the conflict, the latter is satisfied that an individual protected
person is definitely suspected of or engaged in activities hostile to the
security of the State, such individual person shall not be entitled to claim
such rights and privileges under the present Convention as would, if
exercised in the favour of such individual person, be prejudicial to the
security of such State.
Where in occupied territory an individual protected person is detained as
a spy or saboteur, or as a person under definite suspicion of activity
hostile to the security of the Occupying Power, such person shall, in those
cases where absolute military security so requires, be regarded as having
forfeited rights of communication under the present Convention.
In each case, such persons shall nevertheless be treated with humanity
and, in case of trial, shall not be deprived of the rights of fair and
regular trial prescribed by the present Convention. They shall also be
granted the full rights and privileges of a protected person under the
present Convention at the earliest date consistent with the security of the
State or Occupying Power, as the case may be.
Art. 6. The present Convention shall
apply from the outset of any conflict or occupation mentioned in Article 2.
In the territory of Parties to the conflict, the application of the
present Convention shall cease on the general close of military operations.
In the case of occupied territory, the application of the present
Convention shall cease one year after the general close of military
operations; however, the Occupying Power shall be bound, for the duration of
the occupation, to the extent that such Power exercises the functions of
government in such territory, by the provisions of the following Articles of
the present Convention: 1 to 12, 27, 29 to 34, 47, 49, 51, 52, 53, 59, 61 to
Protected persons whose release, repatriation or re-establishment may
take place after such dates shall meanwhile continue to benefit by the
Art. 7. In addition to the agreements
expressly provided for in Articles 11, 14, 15, 17, 36, 108, 109, 132, 133
and 149, the High Contracting Parties may conclude other special agreements
for all matters concerning which they may deem it suitable to make separate
provision. No special agreement shall adversely affect the situation of
protected persons, as defined by the present Convention, not restrict the
rights which it confers upon them.
Protected persons shall continue to have the benefit of such agreements
as long as the Convention is applicable to them, except where express
provisions to the contrary are contained in the aforesaid or in subsequent
agreements, or where more favourable measures have been taken with regard to
them by one or other of the Parties to the conflict.
Art. 8. Protected persons may in no
circumstances renounce in part or in entirety the rights secured to them by
the present Convention, and by the special agreements referred to in the
foregoing Article, if such there be.
Art. 9. The present Convention shall
be applied with the cooperation and under the scrutiny of the Protecting
Powers whose duty it is to safeguard the interests of the Parties to the
conflict. For this purpose, the Protecting Powers may appoint, apart from
their diplomatic or consular staff, delegates from amongst their own
nationals or the nationals of other neutral Powers. The said delegates shall
be subject to the approval of the Power with which they are to carry out
The Parties to the conflict shall facilitate to the greatest extent
possible the task of the representatives or delegates of the Protecting
The representatives or delegates of the Protecting Powers shall not in
any case exceed their mission under the present Convention.
They shall, in particular, take account of the imperative necessities of
security of the State wherein they carry out their duties.
Art. 10. The provisions of the
present Convention constitute no obstacle to the humanitarian activities
which the International Committee of the Red Cross or any other impartial
humanitarian organization may, subject to the consent of the Parties to the
conflict concerned, undertake for the protection of civilian persons and for
Art. 11. The High Contracting
Parties may at any time agree to entrust to an international organization
which offers all guarantees of impartiality and efficacy the duties
incumbent on the Protecting Powers by virtue of the present Convention.
When persons protected by the present Convention do not benefit or cease
to benefit, no matter for what reason, by the activities of a Protecting
Power or of an organization provided for in the first paragraph above, the
Detaining Power shall request a neutral State, or such an organization, to
undertake the functions performed under the present Convention by a
Protecting Power designated by the Parties to a conflict.
If protection cannot be arranged accordingly, the Detaining Power shall
request or shall accept, subject to the provisions of this Article, the
offer of the services of a humanitarian organization, such as the
International Committee of the Red Cross, to assume the humanitarian
functions performed by Protecting Powers under the present Convention.
Any neutral Power or any organization invited by the Power concerned or
offering itself for these purposes, shall be required to act with a sense of
responsibility towards the Party to the conflict on which persons protected
by the present Convention depend, and shall be required to furnish
sufficient assurances that it is in a position to undertake the appropriate
functions and to discharge them impartially.
No derogation from the preceding provisions shall be made by special
agreements between Powers one of which is restricted, even temporarily, in
its freedom to negotiate with the other Power or its allies by reason of
military events, more particularly where the whole, or a substantial part,
of the territory of the said Power is occupied.
Whenever in the present Convention mention is made of a Protecting Power,
such mention applies to substitute organizations in the sense of the present
The provisions of this Article shall extend and be adapted to cases of
nationals of a neutral State who are in occupied territory or who find
themselves in the territory of a belligerent State in which the State of
which they are nationals has not normal diplomatic representation.
Art. 12. In cases where they deem it
advisable in the interest of protected persons, particularly in cases of
disagreement between the Parties to the conflict as to the application or
interpretation of the provisions of the present Convention, the Protecting
Powers shall lend their good offices with a view to settling the
For this purpose, each of the Protecting Powers may, either at the
invitation of one Party or on its own initiative, propose to the Parties to
the conflict a meeting of their representatives, and in particular of the
authorities responsible for protected persons, possibly on neutral territory
suitably chosen. The Parties to the conflict shall be bound to give effect
to the proposals made to them for this purpose. The Protecting Powers may,
if necessary, propose for approval by the Parties to the conflict a person
belonging to a neutral Power, or delegated by the International Committee of
the Red Cross, who shall be invited to take part in such a meeting.