Practice Relating to Rule 29. Medical Transports
Section C. Respect for and protection of hospital ships
Australia’s LOAC Manual (2006) states:
6.44 Classes of vessels exempt from attack. The following classes of enemy vessels are exempt from attack:
• hospital ships;
• small craft used for coastal rescue operations and other medical transports;
6.45 [Such] vessels are exempt from attack only if they:
• are innocently employed in their normal role,
• submit to identification and inspection when required, and
• do not intentionally hamper the movement of combatants and obey orders to stop or move out of the way when required.
9.78 … [H]ospital ships … must be respected and protected at all times and must not be attacked. …
13.30 Among other war crimes generally recognised as forming part of the customary LOAC are:
• attacking a properly marked hospital ship.
The LOAC Manual (2006) replaces both the Defence Force Manual (1994) and the Commanders’ Guide (1994).