Treaties, States Parties and Commentaries
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Commentary of 1960 

The principle of the assimilation of prisoners of war to the armed forces of the Detaining Power in court and procedural matters was already set forth in Article 63 of the 1929 Convention (1). The present Article supplements it by requiring respect for the provisions of the Convention relating to judicial proceedings. In any case of doubt which might be to the disadvantage of prisoners of war, these provisions (which are imperative and are contained in Articles 82 to 108) must outweigh the corresponding provisions in the legislation of the Detaining Power, and the latter must in any event afford as a minimum the safeguards specified in the Convention. This interpretation is also clear from the text itself (2).
Article 84 should also be borne in mind; its first paragraph states that a prisoner of war may be tried only by a military court, unless the laws of the Detaining Power expressly provide otherwise. Paragraph 2 of Article 84 confirms the last phrase of the present provision, by expressly forbidding the Detaining Power to bring a prisoner of war before any court which does not offer the essential guarantees of independence and impartiality as generally recognized, and makes a reference to the safeguards provided for under Article 105 .
Under the present Article, the Detaining Power must respect not only the provisions of Article 105 , but also all the provisions of the present Chapter. The rules of the Convention therefore outweigh national legislation and the States party to the Convention must modify their own legislation if necessary, and in particular their military penal code, in order to respect the minimum standards set forth in Chapter III (Articles 82 to 108). If one or other of these provisions is not observed, then there are grounds for appeal, pursuant to Article 106 .

* (1) [(1) p.476] See below, p. 735;

(2) [(2) p.476] The last phrase is categorical: " -- A
prisoner of war can be validly sentenced only ... if,
' furthermore, ' the provisions of the present Chapter
have been observed.";