Related Rule
Netherlands
Practice Relating to Rule 54. Attacks against Objects Indispensable to the Survival of the Civilian Population
Under the Military Manual (1993) of the Netherlands, it is prohibited to attack, destroy, remove or render useless objects indispensable to the survival of the civilian population whatever the motive. It includes in the category of objects indispensable to the survival of the civilian population, foodstuffs, agricultural areas, crops, drinking water installations, irrigation works and other supplies. 
Netherlands, Toepassing Humanitair Oorlogsrecht, Voorschift No. 27-412/1, Koninklijke Landmacht, Ministerie van Defensie, 1993, p. V-7.
In addition, the manual specifically prohibits “attack, destruction, removal and rendering useless of objects indispensable to the survival of the civilian population, such as foodstuffs, agricultural areas, crops, livestock, drinking water installations and irrigation works” in non-international armed conflicts. 
Netherlands, Toepassing Humanitair Oorlogsrecht, Voorschift No. 27-412/1, Koninklijke Landmacht, Ministerie van Defensie, 1993, p. XI-6.
Under the Military Handbook (1995) of the Netherlands, it is prohibited to attack, destroy, remove or render useless objects indispensable to the survival of the civilian population. It includes in the category of objects indispensable to the survival of the civilian population, foodstuffs, agricultural areas, crops, drinking water installations, irrigation works and other supplies. 
Netherlands, Handboek Militair, Ministerie van Defensie, 1995, p. 7-44.
The Military Manual (2005) of the Netherlands states:
0534. It is prohibited to starve civilians. It is also prohibited to attack, destroy, remove or render useless such objects as are indispensable to the survival of the civilian population, such as foodstuffs, agricultural areas where foodstuffs are produced, crops, livestock, drinking-water installations and irrigation systems. It is irrelevant here whether the motive of the action is to starve the civilian population or some other motive.
0535. A power station or, more generally, the power supply can be of fundamental importance to the civilian population. Any attack should take account of this aspect. 
Netherlands, Humanitair Oorlogsrecht: Handleiding, Voorschift No. 27-412, Koninklijke Landmacht, Militair Juridische Dienst, 2005, §§ 0534–0535.
In its chapter on non-international armed conflict, the manual states:
Objects important to the survival of civilian populations should be spared. This means that the following acts are prohibited: to attack, destroy, remove or render unusable essential objects such as foods, farmland, crops, livestock, drinking-water installations and irrigation works. 
Netherlands, Humanitair Oorlogsrecht: Handleiding, Voorschift No. 27-412, Koninklijke Landmacht, Militair Juridische Dienst, 2005, § 1033.
The Definition of War Crimes Decree (1946) of the Netherlands considers as a war crime the “intentional withholding of medical supplies from civilians”. 
Netherlands, Definition of War Crimes Decree, 1946, Article 1.
Under the International Crimes Act (2003) of the Netherlands, “intentionally using starvation of civilians as a method of warfare by depriving them of objects indispensable to their survival” is a crime, when committed in an international armed conflict. 
Netherlands, International Crimes Act, 2003, Article 5(5)(l).
The Military Manual (1993) of the Netherlands provides that objects indispensable to the survival of the civilian population are not protected if these objects are used as sustenance only for the members of the opposing armed forces or, if not as sustenance, then in direct support of military action of the adverse party. 
Netherlands, Toepassing Humanitair Oorlogsrecht, Voorschift No. 27-412/1, Koninklijke Landmacht, Ministerie van Defensie, 1993, p. V-8.
The Military Manual (2005) of the Netherlands states:
There are individual exceptions to the prohibition [on attacking, destroying, removing or rendering useless objects indispensable to the survival of the civilian population]: if the relevant objects are used solely for the subsistence of members of the armed forces or, if not as subsistence, then in direct support of the adversary’s military operations. Another exception exists for a party to a conflict which is defending its own territory. Given the vital importance of the defence of its own territory, a party may, if compelling military necessity dictates, destroy essential objects or make them unusable … Placing parts of one’s own territory under water (flooding) is not forbidden under these rules. 
Netherlands, Humanitair Oorlogsrecht: Handleiding, Voorschift No. 27-412, Koninklijke Landmacht, Militair Juridische Dienst, 2005, § 0536.
The Military Manual (1993) of the Netherlands provides that, for any party to the conflict defending its national territory, the destruction of or the fact of rendering useless objects indispensable to the survival of the civilian population “may be made … within such territory under its own control where required by imperative military necessity”. It adds that the flooding of parts of one’s own territory is not forbidden by the rules prohibiting the destruction of objects indispensable to the survival of the civilian population. 
Netherlands, Toepassing Humanitair Oorlogsrecht, Voorschift No. 27-412/1, Koninklijke Landmacht, Ministerie van Defensie, 1993, p. V-8.
The Military Manual (2005) of the Netherlands states:
There are individual exceptions to the prohibition [on attacking, destroying, removing or rendering useless objects indispensable to the survival of the civilian population]: if the relevant objects are used solely for the subsistence of members of the armed forces or, if not as subsistence, then in direct support of the adversary’s military operations. Another exception exists for a party to a conflict which is defending its own territory. Given the vital importance of the defence of its own territory, a party may, if compelling military necessity dictates, destroy essential objects or make them unusable … Placing parts of one’s own territory under water (flooding) is not forbidden under these rules. 
Netherlands, Humanitair Oorlogsrecht: Handleiding, Voorschift No. 27-412, Koninklijke Landmacht, Militair Juridische Dienst, 2005, § 0536.