Related Rule
France
Practice Relating to Rule 89. Violence to Life
France’s Disciplinary Regulations (1975), as amended, prohibits attacks on the lives and physical integrity of the wounded, sick and shipwrecked, prisoners and civilians, including murder. 
France, Règlement de Discipline Générale dans les Armées, Decree No. 75-675 of 28 July 1975, replacing Decree No. 66-749, completed by Decree of 11 October 1978, implemented by Instruction No. 52000/DEF/C/5 of 10 December 1979, and modified by Decree of 12 July 1982, Ministère de la Défense, Etat-Major de l’Armée de Terre, Bureau Emploi, Article 9 bis (2).
France’s LOAC Summary Note (1992) provides that all persons hors de combat have the right to respect for their lives. It further states that “wilful killing” is a war crime. 
France, Fiche de Synthèse sur les Règles Applicables dans les Conflits Armés, Note No. 432/DEF/EMA/OL.2/NP, Général de Corps d’Armée Voinot (pour l’Amiral Lanxade, Chef d’Etat-major des Armées), 1992, §§ 2.1 and 3.4.
France’s LOAC Teaching Note (2000) provides: “It is prohibited to … kill or injure an adversary … who is hors de combat.” It further states that “wilful killing” is a grave breach of the law of armed conflict and is a war crime. 
France, Fiche didactique relative au droit des conflits armés, Directive of the Ministry of Defence, 4 January 2000, annexed to the Directive No. 147 of the Ministry of Defence of 4 January 2000, pp. 2 and 7.
France’s LOAC Manual (2001) provides that “attacks upon the life and physical and mental well-being of persons, such as murder” constitute war crimes. 
France, Manuel de droit des conflits armés, Ministère de la Défense, Direction des Affaires Juridiques, Sous-Direction du droit international humanitaire et du droit européen, Bureau du droit des conflits armés, 2001, p. 45; see also p. 44 (killing as a part of a genocide campaign).
The manual also states that wilful killing and attempts on the physical integrity or health of the wounded and sick are war crimes. 
France, Manuel de droit des conflits armés, Ministère de la Défense, Direction des Affaires Juridiques, Sous-Direction du droit international humanitaire et du droit européen, Bureau du droit des conflits armés, 2001, p. 45.
It further states that one of the three main principles common to IHL and human rights is the principle of inviolability, which guarantees every human being the right to respect for his or her life. 
France, Manuel de droit des conflits armés, Ministère de la Défense, Direction des Affaires Juridiques, Sous-Direction du droit international humanitaire et du droit européen, Bureau du droit des conflits armés, 2001, pp. 50–52.
The manual further states that the execution of hostages is expressly prohibited by the law of armed conflict and has been a war crime since 1949. 
France, Manuel de droit des conflits armés, Ministère de la Défense, Direction des Affaires Juridiques, Sous-Direction du droit international humanitaire et du droit européen, Bureau du droit des conflits armés, 2001, p. 101.
The manual also provides that “practices of massive and systematic summary executions” constitute war crimes. 
France, Manuel de droit des conflits armés, Ministère de la Défense, Direction des Affaires Juridiques, Sous-Direction du droit international humanitaire et du droit européen, Bureau du droit des conflits armés, 2001, p. 44.
The manual refers to common Article 3 of the 1949 Geneva Conventions and stipulates that the “carrying out of executions without previous judgment pronounced by a regularly constituted court affording all the judicial guarantees which are recognized as indispensable by civilized peoples” is prohibited. 
France, Manuel de droit des conflits armés, Ministère de la Défense, Direction des Affaires Juridiques, Sous-Direction du droit international humanitaire et du droit européen, Bureau du droit des conflits armés, 2001, p. 101.
Under France’s Penal Code (1992), “killing members of the group” constitutes genocide when “committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group”. 
France, Penal Code, 1992, Article 211-1; see also Article 212-1 (massive and summary executions as a crime against humanity).
France’s Penal Code (1992), as amended in 2010, states in its section on war crimes common to international and non-international armed conflicts:
Wilfully committing violence to the life or to the physical or mental integrity of a person protected by the international law of armed conflict pursuant to the laws and customs of war and to international humanitarian law … is an aggravated offence. 
France, Penal Code, 1992, as amended in 2010, Article 461-2.
In its written statement submitted to the ICJ in the Nuclear Weapons case in 1995, France stated that the right to life was not absolute and that an armed conflict necessarily entailed attempts on life. It added that Article 15(2) of the 1950 European Convention on Human Rights and the travaux préparatoires of Article 6 of the 1966 International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights recognized this. 
France, Written statement submitted to the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, 20 June 1995, p. 38; see also Oral pleadings before the ICJ, Nuclear Weapons case, 2 November 1995, Verbatim Record CR 95/23, § 44.
The instructions given to the French armed forces for the conduct of Opération Mistral, simulating a military operation under the right of self-defence or a mandate of the UN Security Council, state that persons not participating in hostilities (particularly the civilian population) have the right to respect for their lives. 
France, Etat-major de la Force d’Action Rapide, Ordres pour l’Opération Mistral, 1995, Section 6, § 62.
In a white paper on “Defence and National Security” published in 2008, France’s Ministry of Defence stated:
The sovereignty of a State consists, first of all, of protecting its population. Neither the principle of non-interference nor the one of sovereignty can be evoked by a State in order to justify atrocities such as massacres and other massive violations of international humanitarian law. 
France, Ministry of Defence, Defence and National Security: The White Paper, 17 June 2008, p. 123.
In 2009, the Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of France, in a statement calling for the respect of international humanitarian law, which provided examples of serious violations that had recently occurred in several armed conflicts around the world, noted:
“Modern” war disgusts us in the tragic consequences it has for civilians.
How could we not be horrified at the sight of bodies, atrociously maimed or burned; the bodies of women, men and children lying in the smoking ruins of their homes …
Somalia, Congo, Rwanda, Sri Lanka, Darfur, Gaza: this depressing litany of conflicts with their multitude of innocent civilian victims swept away by the storms of war must not however leave us indifferent. 
France, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, “The Savaging of Humanitarian Law”, New York Times, 28 January 2009, p. 1.