Practice Relating to Rule 125. Correspondence of Persons Deprived of Their Liberty
South Africa’s LOAC Teaching Manual (2008) states:
Fundamental Norms and Values (rules)
The fundamental norms/val[u]es which underlie the LOAC [law of armed conflict] are:
- Captured combatants and civilians under the authority of an adverse party are entitled to respect for their lives, dignity, personal rights and convictions. They will have the right to correspond with their families and to receive relief.
- All persons who are captured or under the authority of an adverse party are entitled to, as a minimum, the protection and guarantees bestowed upon prisoners of war (POW).
The manual also states:
c. Prisoners of War
Within one week after arrival in the camp, a POW is entitled to fill in two capture cards (a type of postcard issued by the ICRC);
- one to be sent directly to his family; and
- one to be sent to the Central Tracing Agency of the ICRC in Geneva.
This capture card must include the following information
The personal particulars of the POW.
The fact of his capture.
The POW’s current address (POW camp).
 His state of health.
… [A] POW has the right to receive and send postcards or letters and receive packages. …
POW have the right to;
- receive and send postcards and letters (subject to censorship);
- receive packages[.]
South Africa’s Implementation of the Geneva Conventions Act (2012) states: “A protected prisoner of war who is in the custody of the South African National Defence Force must be granted the protection of the  Third [Geneva] Convention or the  Fourth [Geneva] Convention, as the case may be.”
The Act defines a “protected prisoner of war” as a “person protected by the Third Convention or a person who is protected as a prisoner of war under [the 1977 Additional] Protocol I”.