Practice Relating to Rule 106. Conditions for Prisoner-of-War Status
Section C. Situations where combatants cannot distinguish themselves
Argentina’s Law of War Manual (1989) states:
In order to promote the protection of the civilian population from the effects of hostilities, combatants are obliged to distinguish themselves from the civilian population while they are engaged in an attack or in a military operation preparatory to an attack. Recognizing, however, that there are situations in armed conflicts where, owing to the nature of the hostilities an armed combatant cannot so distinguish himself, he shall retain his status as a combatant, provided that, in such situations, he carries his arms openly:
(a) during each military engagement, and
(b) during such time as he is visible to the adversary while he is engaged in a military deployment preceding the launching of an attack in which he is to participate.
Acts which comply with the requirements of this paragraph shall not be considered as perfidious within the meaning of Article 37, paragraph 1 (c).
At the CDDH, Argentina abstained in the vote on Article 42 of the draft Additional Protocol I (now Article 44) because “the text adopted did not guarantee the civilian population the minimum protection it needed”.