Related Rule
Cameroon
Practice Relating to Rule 8. Definition of Military Objectives
Cameroon’s Instructor’s Manual (1992) states:
2.1.2 Military objective definition: Is considered a military objective:
- positions, barracks, warehouses;
- other goods whose existence or destruction contributes in some way to the military action.
3.2.1. Two categories of elements allow to define a military objective: those in relation with the military action and those in relation with the military advantage.
1- Elements necessary to the military action
A military objective can only be identified or defined by its importance to military action. Three different signs are relevant to this matter: the nature of the objective, the location of the objective and the function of the objective.
First, regarding the nature of the objective, it can be acknowledged that the military character of a good or objective can only be appreciated in relation to its value to armed forces. For example, a mortar is only valuable for combatants.
Second, regarding the location of the objective, it must be noted that the military character of a good or objective can also be defined by its location at the moment of the attack. However, it must be highlighted that it is always difficult to conduct an exact assessment, especially in large cities and forest areas, where military objectives and civilian goods are side by side.
Finally, regarding the function of the objective, it is important to indicate that a military objective is the one that is subjected to or may be subjected to attack from belligerents in order to obtain military advantage or its utilization to this end.
2- Elements enabling military advantage
In addition to the military action, the military objective is also defined with regard to the precise military advantage it provides. This is why, the capture or use of a military objective must enable, for example, putting the enemy to flight, the partial or total occupation of the enemy’s positions, the capture of a large number of prisoners, or the achievement of a partial or total military victory. 
Cameroon, Droit international humanitaire et droit de la guerre, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les Forces Armées, Présidence de la République, Ministère de la Défense, Etat-major des Armées, Troisième Division, Edition 1992, p. 81; see also p. 17.
Cameroon’s Instructor’s Manual (2006) states that “military objectives [are] … objects which by virtue of their existence or destruction contribute in whatever way to military action”. 
Cameroon, Droit des conflits armés et droit international humanitaire, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les forces de défense, Ministère de la Défense, Présidence de la République, Etat-major des Armées, 2006, p. 92, § 352.12; see also p. 134, § 412.12.
The manual also states:
The Elements of the Definition [of a Military Objective] (Article 52 First Protocol [1977 Additional Protocol I])
Two categories of elements define the military objective: those relating to the military action and those relating to the military advantage.
1. Elements necessary for military action
A military objective can only be defined or identified by its importance for military action.
Three aspects are relevant to this matter: the nature of the objective, the location of the objective and the function of the objective.
Firstly, regarding the nature of the objective, it must be noted that the military character of an object or an objective may only be appreciated in relation to its value for the armed forces. Thus, a mortar is only valuable for combatants.
Next, regarding the location of the objective, it must be noted that the military character of an object or objective is defined by its location at the moment of attack. It must be stressed that it is nonetheless always difficult to make an exact assessment, notably in large cities and forest areas where military objectives and civilian objects are located in close proximity to one another. It must further be noticed that the destination or use conferred upon an object can give it a military character. This is the case, for example, with schools which are transformed into military objects [objectives] [and] with objects indispensable for the survival of the [civilian] population which are used for the sole sustenance of members of the armed forces or other ends that support military action.
Lastly, regarding the function of the objective, it is important to specify that a military objective is one that is subjected or may be subjected to attacks by belligerents in order to obtain military advantages, or is used to these ends.
2. Elements enabling military advantage
In addition to the military action, the military objective is also defined by the relation to the precise military advantage which it procures. This is why the capture or use of a military objective must, for example, permit putting the enemy to flight, partially or totally occupying his positions, detaining large numbers of prisoners of war, or obtaining a partial or total military victory. 
Cameroon, Droit des conflits armés et droit international humanitaire, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les forces de défense, Ministère de la Défense, Présidence de la République, Etat-major des Armées, 2006, p. 215, § 521.
Cameroon’s Instructor’s Manual (1992) states that the armed forces are considered military objectives, with the exception of religious and medical personnel. 
Cameroon, Droit international humanitaire et droit de la guerre, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les Forces Armées, Présidence de la République, Ministère de la Défense, Etat-major des Armées, Troisième Division, Edition 1992, p. 17.
Cameroon’s Instructor’s Manual (2006) qualifies “Armed Forces (with the exception of religious and medical personnel)” as “military objectives”. 
Cameroon, Droit des conflits armés et droit international humanitaire, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les forces de défense, Ministère de la Défense, Présidence de la République, Etat-major des Armées, 2006, p. 92, § 352.12; see also p. 134, § 412.12.
Cameroon’s Instructor’s Manual (1992) considers military positions, barracks and depots as military objectives. 
Cameroon, Droit international humanitaire et droit de la guerre, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les Forces Armées, Présidence de la République, Ministère de la Défense, Etat-major des Armées, Troisième Division, Edition 1992, p. 17.
Cameroon’s Instructor’s Manual (2006) qualifies “positions, barracks and depots” as “military objectives”. 
Cameroon, Droit des conflits armés et droit international humanitaire, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les forces de défense, Ministère de la Défense, Présidence de la République, Etat-major des Armées, 2006, p. 92, § 352.12; see also p. 134, § 412.12.
Cameroon’s Instructor’s Manual (1992) considers that enemy warships are military objectives. 
Cameroon, Droit international humanitaire et droit de la guerre, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les Forces Armées, Présidence de la République, Ministère de la Défense, Etat-major des Armées, Troisième Division, Edition 1992, p. 111.
Cameroon’s Instructor’s Manual (2006) states in relation to the rules on the distinction between warships and merchant ships that “after the identification, only a military objective may be attacked, in this case [only] the warship”. 
Cameroon, Droit des conflits armés et droit international humanitaire, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les forces de défense, Ministère de la Défense, Présidence de la République, Etat-major des Armées, 2006, p. 258, § 613.
Cameroon’s Instructor’s Manual (2006) states:
[The following] are considered military objectives:
- objects which by virtue of their existence or destruction contribute in whatever way to military action. Civilians located within a military objective or in its surroundings immediately share the danger to which it is exposed.  
Cameroon, Droit des conflits armés et droit international humanitaire, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les forces de défense, Ministère de la Défense, Présidence de la République, Etat-major des Armées, 2006, p. 92, § 352.12; see also p. 134, § 412.12.