Practice Relating to Rule 142. Instruction in International Humanitarian Law within Armed Forces
Madagascar’s Military Manual (1994) notes:
Madagascar ratified the Geneva Conventions in 1963 and their two Additional Protocols in 1992 and has the obligation to promote the instruction [and] dissemination of international humanitarian law, in particular within the Armed Forces, and to ensure their application, if needed …
In the framework of dissemination of international humanitarian law (IHL), the law of armed conflict or law of war shall from now on be included in the general programme of instruction of the military personnel of the Armed Forces …
The Geneva Conventions of 1949 and Additional Protocol I of 1977 stipulate in some of their articles that “all States parties to the conventions and/or to the Additional Protocols are obliged to disseminate IHL in their respective countries”.
The ultimate goal of the dissemination of International Humanitarian Law is to create through a wide knowledge of its principles, inherent rights and duties, a true humanitarian consciousness, imperatively guiding troops’ behaviour in conflict situations.
The manual also provides: “Law of war training has to be integrated into normal military activity.”
At the 27th International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent in 1999, Madagascar pledged “to use all means available to improve dissemination of international humanitarian law at the national level”.
Madagascar’s Military Manual (1994) states: “The commander himself shall ensure that his subordinates know their obligations arising from the law of war and respect them.”
The manual further provides that “the commander is responsible for proper law of war training” and that “the superior is the normal instructor of his subordinates also for law of war training”.
In addition, the manual states: “The aim of instruction is: … to ensure true respect for this law of war by all combatants.”