Practice Relating to Rule 112. Search for and Collection of the Dead

Geneva Convention (1929)
Article 3 of the 1929 Geneva Convention provides: “After each engagement the occupant of the field of battle shall take measures to search for … the dead”. 
Convention for the Amelioration of the Condition of the Wounded and Sick in Armies in the Field, Geneva, 27 July 1929, Article 3.
Geneva Convention I
Article 15, first paragraph, of the 1949 Geneva Convention I provides: “At all times, and particularly after an engagement, Parties to the conflict shall, without delay, take all possible measures … to search for the dead”. 
Convention (I) for the Amelioration of the Condition of the Wounded and Sick in Armed Forces in the Field, Geneva, 12 August 1949, Article 15, first para.
Geneva Convention II
Article 18, first paragraph, of the 1949 Geneva Convention II provides: “After each engagement, Parties to the conflict shall, without delay, take all possible measures … to search for the dead”. 
Convention (II) for the Amelioration of the Condition of the Wounded, Sick and Shipwrecked Members of Armed Forces at Sea, Geneva, 12 August 1949, Article 18, first para.
Geneva Convention II
Article 21, first paragraph, of the 1949 Geneva Convention II provides: “The Parties to the conflict may appeal to the charity of commanders of neutral merchant vessels, yachts or other craft … to collect the dead.” 
Convention (II) for the Amelioration of the Condition of the Wounded, Sick and Shipwrecked Members of Armed Forces at Sea, Geneva, 12 August 1949, Article 21, first para.
Geneva Convention IV
Article 16, second paragraph, of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV provides: “As far as military considerations allow, each Party to the conflict shall facilitate the steps taken to search for the killed”. 
Convention (IV) relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, Geneva, 12 August 1949, Article 16, second para.
Additional Protocol I
Article 17(2) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I provides: “The Parties to the conflict may appeal to the civilian population and the aid societies … to search for the dead and report their location”. 
Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts (Protocol I), Geneva, 8 June 1977, Article 17(2). Article 17 was adopted by consensus. CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.37, 24 May 1977, p. 70.
Article 33(2) of the Protocol further provides:
In order to facilitate the gathering of information [regarding missing persons], each Party to the conflict shall, with respect to persons who would not receive more favourable consideration under the Conventions and this Protocol:
b) to the fullest extent possible, facilitate and, if need be, carry out the search for and the recording of information concerning such persons if they have died in other circumstances as a result of hostilities or occupation. 
Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts (Protocol I), Geneva, 8 June 1977, Article 33(2). Article 33 was adopted by consensus. CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.37, 24 May 1977, p. 71.
Article 33(4) provides: “The Parties to the conflict shall endeavour to agree on arrangements for teams to search for … and recover the dead from the battlefield areas”. 
Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts (Protocol I), Geneva, 8 June 1977, Article 33(4). Article 33 was adopted by consensus. CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.37, 24 May 1977, p. 71.
Additional Protocol II
Article 8 of the 1977 Additional Protocol II provides: “Whenever circumstances permit, and particularly after an engagement, all possible measures shall be taken, without delay … to search for the dead”. 
Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of Non-International Armed Conflicts (Protocol II), Geneva, 8 June 1977, Article 8. Article 8 was adopted by consensus. CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VII, CDDH/SR.51, 3 June 1977, p. 110.
N’Sele Ceasefire Agreement
The 1992 N’Sele Ceasefire Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Rwanda and the Rwandese Patriotic Front provides:
Article II
The cease-fire shall imply:
5. The possibility of recovering the remains of the dead. 
N’Sele Ceasefire Agreement of 29th March, 1991 between the Government of the Republic of Rwanda and the Rwandese Patriotic Front, as amended in Gbadolite on 16th September, 1991 and at Arusha on 12th July, 1992, Article II(5), as annexed to the Arusha Peace Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Rwanda and the Rwandese Patriotic Front, Arusha, 4 August 1993.
Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and IHL in the Philippines
Article 4(9) of Part IV of the 1998 Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and IHL in the Philippines provides: “Every possible measure shall be taken, without delay, … to search for the dead”. 
Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines, The Hague, 16 March 1998, Part IV, Article 4(9).
Argentina
Argentina’s Law of War Manual (1969) states that the parties shall, without delay, take all possible measures to search for and collect the dead. 
Argentina, Leyes de Guerra, RC-46-1, Público, II Edición 1969, Ejército Argentino, Edición original aprobado por el Comandante en Jefe del Ejército, 9 May 1967, § 3.005; see also Leyes de Guerra, PC-08-01, Público, Edición 1989, Estado Mayor Conjunto de las Fuerzas Armadas, aprobado por Resolución No. 489/89 del Ministerio de Defensa, 23 April 1990, § 2.06.
Australia
Australia’s Defence Force Manual (1994) provides: “Parties must search for the dead”. 
Australia, Manual on Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Force Publication, Operations Series, ADFP 37 – Interim Edition, 1994, § 986; see also § 994.
The manual further states:
All of the protagonists to a conflict shall attempt to agree to form special teams to undertake the search, identity and recovery of their dead from a belligerent’s battlefield. This will include any arrangements for such teams to be accompanied by members of the belligerent force upon whose land they are searching. In the course of their duties search teams are deemed to be protected persons. 
Australia, Manual on Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Force Publication, Operations Series, ADFP 37 – Interim Edition, 1994, § 9-104.
Australia
Australia’s LOAC Manual (2006) states:
9.91 The parties to a conflict must … search for the dead …
9.109 … All of the protagonists to a conflict shall attempt to agree to form special teams to undertake the search, identity and recovery of their dead from a belligerent’s battlefield. This will include any arrangement for such teams to be accompanied by members of the belligerent force upon whose land they are searching. In the course of their duties search teams are deemed to be protected persons. 
Australia, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Doctrine Publication 06.4, Australian Defence Headquarters, 11 May 2006, §§ 9.91 and 9.109.
The LOAC Manual (2006) replaces both the Defence Force Manual (1994) and the Commanders’ Guide (1994).
Belgium
Belgium’s Law of War Manual (1983) provides: “The belligerents must search for the dead and collect them”. 
Belgium, Droit Pénal et Disciplinaire Militaire et Droit de la Guerre, Deuxième Partie, Droit de la Guerre, Ecole Royale Militaire, par J. Maes, Chargé de cours, Avocat-général près la Cour Militaire, D/1983/1187/029, 1983, p. 49.
Benin
Benin’s Military Manual (1995) provides: “Combatants must search for the dead.” The manual also states: “Military commanders can make an appeal to the civilian population, to aid societies such as the National Red Cross or Red Crescent Societies … to collect … the dead”. 
Benin, Le Droit de la Guerre, III fascicules, Forces Armées du Bénin, Ministère de la Défense nationale, 1995, Fascicule II, p. 10.
Burundi
Burundi’s Regulations on International Humanitarian Law (2007) states that “[c]ombatants must participate in the … search for the dead”. 
Burundi, Règlement n° 98 sur le droit international humanitaire, Ministère de la Défense Nationale et des Anciens Combattants, Projet “Moralisation” (BDI/B-05), August 2007, Part I bis, p. 25.
Cameroon
Cameroon’s Instructor’s Manual (1992) states that military commanders must ensure that the dead are searched for and evacuated. 
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. 67, § 241(1).
The manual further states: “In case of civilian losses, civil defence units and personnel shall participate in the search for the victims.” 
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, pp. 95–96, DG 34.
The manual also states: “An appeal to the charity of the population can be made to help National Societies such as the Red Cross or the Red Crescent in order to collect … the dead”. 
Cameroon, Droit international humanitaire et droit de la guerre, Manuel de l’nstructeur en vigueur dans les Forces Armées, Présidence de la République, Ministère de la Défense, Etat-major des Armées, Troisième Division, Edition 1992, p. 96, DG 34.
Cameroon
Cameroon’s Instructor’s Manual (2006) states:
In case of armed conflict, the protection of persons and objects must be the first permanent concern of commanders. Thus, the first act must be to search for the victims.
An appeal to the charity of the population can be made to help National Societies such as the Red Cross or the Red Crescent collect … and even identify the dead. 
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. 121, § 401; see also p. 163, § 461.
Canada
Canada’s LOAC Manual (1999) provides that the belligerents “must also search for the dead”. 
Canada, LOA The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Level, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 1999C Manual (1999), p. 9-1, § 9; see also p. 11-2, § 16.
With respect to non-international armed conflicts in particular, the manual specifies: “Steps must also be taken to search for the dead”. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Level, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 1999, p. 17-4, § 32.
The manual also states:
Parties to the conflict shall endeavour to reach agreements to allow teams to search for … and recover the dead from battlefield areas. They may also attach to such teams representatives of the adverse party when the search is taking place in areas controlled by the adverse party. While carrying out these duties, members of the teams shall be respected and protected. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Level, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 1999, p. 9-5, § 53.
Canada
Canada’s Code of Conduct (2001) provides: “There is … an obligation to search for … the dead”. 
Canada, Code of Conduct for CF Personnel, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 4 June 2001, Rule 7, § 3.
Canada
Canada’s LOAC Manual (2001) states in its chapter on the treatment of the wounded, sick and shipwrecked: “The parties to a conflict must protect the wounded, sick and shipwrecked from pillage and ill-treatment and ensure their adequate care. They must also search for the dead and prevent their remains from being despoiled.” 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 904.2.
The manual further states:
924. Search for missing and dead
1. The Geneva Conventions impose certain obligations on Detaining Powers with regard to the burial and reporting of dead personnel belonging to the adverse party. [The 1977 Additional protocol I] also imposes obligations to search for the missing and to report upon the disposal of the remains of the dead.
2. As soon as possible, and certainly immediately upon the end of hostilities, each party to the conflict must search for those reported missing by the adverse party. The requests and all information, which may assist in tracing or identifying such person shall be transmitted through the Protecting Power or the Central Tracing Agency of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) or the national Red Cross Societies.
3. To facilitate the finding of missing personnel, parties to the conflict shall endeavour to reach agreements to allow teams to search for, identify and recover the dead from battlefield areas. They may also attach to such teams representatives of the adverse party when the search is taking place in areas controlled by the adverse party. While carrying out these duties, members of the teams shall be respected and protected. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 924.
In its chapter on the treatment of civilians in the hands of a party to the conflict or an occupying power, the manual states: “As far as military considerations permit, the belligerents must facilitate any steps to search for killed and wounded, to assist shipwrecked and other persons exposed to grave danger, and to protect them against pillage and ill-treatment.” 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 1110.
In its chapter on non-international armed conflicts, the manual states: “After any engagement and whenever circumstances permit, all possible steps must be taken without delay to search for and collect the wounded, sick and shipwrecked … Steps must also be taken to search for the dead”.  
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 1718.
Canada
Canada’s Code of Conduct (2005) states that there is “an obligation to search for … the dead”. 
Canada, Code of Conduct for CF Personnel, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 2005, Rule 7, § 3.
Central African Republic
The Central African Republic’s Instructor’s Manual (1999) states in Volume 2 (Instruction for group and patrol leaders): “Combatants must … search for the dead … Military chiefs may appeal to the civilian population, [and] aid societies such as the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies … to collect and identify the dead.” 
Central African Republic, Le Droit de la Guerre, Fascicule No. 2: Formation pour l’obtention du certificat technique No. 2 (Chef de Groupe), du certificat Inter-Armé (CIA), du certificat d’aptitude de Chef de Patrouille (CACP), Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Centrafricaines, 1999, Chapter II, Section III, § 3.2.
The manual also states: “Dead bodies which, owing to the circumstances, are not buried, cremated or buried at sea, must be evacuated.” 
Central African Republic, Le Droit de la Guerre, Fascicule No. 2: Formation pour l’obtention du certificat technique No. 2 (Chef de Groupe), du certificat Inter-Armé (CIA), du certificat d’aptitude de Chef de Patrouille (CACP), Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Centrafricaines, 1999, Chapter III, Section II, § 2.3.
Chad
Chad’s Instructor’s Manual (2006) states that “the parties to the conflict must take the measures needed to trace and collect the dead”. 
Chad, Droit international humanitaire, Manuel de l’instructeur en vigueur dans les forces armées et de sécurité, Ministère de la Défense, Présidence de la République, Etat-major des Armées, 2006, p. 52; see also p. 75.
Côte d’Ivoire
Côte d’Ivoire’s Teaching Manual (2007) provides in Book III, Volume 2 (Instruction of second-year trainee officers):
I.2.3. The dead
At sea, appeal can be made to the charity of certain commanders of neutral merchant vessels or other craft to collect the dead. 
Côte d’Ivoire, Droit de la guerre, Manuel d’instruction, Livre III, Tome 2 : Instruction de l’élève officier d’active de 2ème année, Manuel de l’instructeur, Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Nationales, November 2007, p. 24.
Croatia
Croatia’s Commanders’ Manual (1992) provides: “When the mission permits, the … dead in action shall be searched for and collected.” 
Croatia, Basic Rules of the Law of Armed Conflicts – Commanders’ Manual, Republic of Croatia, Ministry of Defence, 1992, § 71.
The manual further states: “Bodies not buried or cremated on the spot shall be evacuated.” 
Croatia, Basic Rules of the Law of Armed Conflicts – Commanders’ Manual, Republic of Croatia, Ministry of Defence, 1992, § 89.
France
France’s LOAC Summary Note (1992) and LOAC Teaching Note (2000) provide that the dead must be collected. 
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; 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, p. 3.
Germany
Germany’s Military Manual (1992) states: “The dead are to be collected.” 
Germany, Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflicts – Manual, DSK VV207320067, edited by The Federal Ministry of Defence of the Federal Republic of Germany, VR II 3, August 1992, English translation of ZDv 15/2, Humanitäres Völkerrecht in bewaffneten Konflikten – Handbuch, August 1992, § 611.
India
Under India’s police regulations, Indian police are required to make arrangements for the collection of dead persons killed in police firing. 
India, Police Manual for Handling Civil Disturbances, Home Ministry, Government of Maharashtra, Bombay, 1986, Article 13(xvii–xviii); West Bengal Police Regulations, Regulation No. 156, Government of West Bengal, Calcutta, 1962, Article 156(a).
Ireland
Ireland’s Basic LOAC Guide (2005) states: “[A]fter an engagement, parties to a conflict are obliged to … [mount a search] for the dead.” 
Ireland, Basic Guide to the Law of Armed Conflict, TP/TRG/01-2005, Director of Defence Forces Training, Department of Defence, July 2005, p. 6.
Italy
Italy’s LOAC Elementary Rules Manual (1991) provides: “When the mission permits, the … dead in action shall be searched for and collected.” 
Italy, Regole elementari di diritto di guerra, SMD-G-012, Stato Maggiore della Difesa, I Reparto, Ufficio Addestramento e Regolamenti, Rome, 1991, § 71.
Kenya
Kenya’s LOAC Manual (1997) provides: “At all times, and particularly after an engagement, Parties to the conflict must take measures to search for and collect the dead.” It adds: “Civil defence units and personnel shall participate in the search for victims, particularly when there are civilian casualties.” 
Kenya, Law of Armed Conflict, Military Basic Course (ORS), 4 Précis, The School of Military Police, 1997, Précis No. 2, p. 14; see also Précis No. 3, pp. 11 and 13.
The manual also provides: “Commanders may appeal to the civilian population, to aid societies such as National Red Cross or Red Crescent Societies and to commanders of neutral merchant vessels, yachts or other craft … to collect and identify the dead.” 
Kenya, Law of Armed Conflict, Military Basic Course (ORS), 4 Précis, The School of Military Police, 1997, Précis No. 3, p. 11.
Madagascar
Madagascar’s Military Manual (1994) provides: “When the mission so permits … those killed in action shall be searched for and collected.” 
Madagascar, Le Droit des Conflits Armés, Ministère des Forces Armées, August 1994, Fiche No. 7-O, § 16; see also Fiche No. 5-SO, § C, Fiche No. 8-SO, § C and Fiche 2-T, § 22.
Mexico
Mexico’s Army and Air Force Manual (2009), in a section on the 1949 Geneva Convention II, states: “After each engagement, parties to the conflict … must search for the dead”. 
Mexico, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para el Ejército y la Fuerza Área Mexicanos, Ministry of National Defence, June 2009, § 118.
Netherlands
The Military Manual (1993) of the Netherlands states, with regard to non-international armed conflicts: “Whenever circumstances permit, all measure shall be taken, without delay to search for and collect … the dead”. 
Netherlands, Toepassing Humanitair Oorlogsrecht, Voorschift No. 27-412/1, Koninklijke Landmacht, Ministerie van Defensie, 1993, p. XI-5.
Netherlands
The Military Handbook (1995) of the Netherlands states: “The dead shall systematically, if possible, be searched for and collected.”  
Netherlands, Handboek Militair, Ministerie van Defensie, 1995, p. 7-40.
Netherlands
The Military Manual (2005) of the Netherlands states: “The dead … must be searched for and collected.” 
Netherlands, Humanitair Oorlogsrecht: Handleiding, Voorschift No. 27-412, Koninklijke Landmacht, Militair Juridische Dienst, 2005, § 1056.
New Zealand
New Zealand’s Military Manual (1992) provides: “The parties to a conflict are obliged to take all possible measures … to search for the dead.” 
New Zealand, Interim Law of Armed Conflict Manual, DM 112, New Zealand Defence Force, Headquarters, Directorate of Legal Services, Wellington, November 1992, § 1003(1); see also § 1011(1).
The manual further states:
To facilitate the finding of the missing personnel Parties to the conflict endeavour to reach agreement to allow teams to search for … and recover the dead from battlefield areas and may attach to such teams representatives of the adverse Party when the search is taking place in areas controlled by the adverse Party. While carrying out these duties, members of the teams shall be respected and protected. 
New Zealand, Interim Law of Armed Conflict Manual, DM 112, New Zealand Defence Force, Headquarters, Directorate of Legal Services, Wellington, November 1992, § 1011(3).
With respect to non-international armed conflicts, the manual states: “Steps must be taken to search for the dead”. 
New Zealand, Interim Law of Armed Conflict Manual, DM 112, New Zealand Defence Force, Headquarters, Directorate of Legal Services, Wellington, November 1992, § 1817.
Nigeria
Nigeria’s Military Manual (1994) provides that the dead must be searched for “may be, with the aid of the civilian population or the Red Cross/Crescent”. 
Nigeria, International Humanitarian Law (IHL), Directorate of Legal Services, Nigerian Army, 1994, p. 46, § 16(g).
Nigeria
Nigeria’s Manual on the Laws of War provides: “At all times and particularly after a campaign, the belligerents must immediately take measures to … search for the dead”. 
Nigeria, The Laws of War, by Lt. Col. L. Ode PSC, Nigerian Army, Lagos, undated, § 34(c).
Peru
Peru’s IHL Manual (2004) states:
At all times in an armed conflict, and particularly after an engagement, parties to the conflict must take all possible measures, to the extent permitted by military requirements and taking into account the circumstances and location, in order to … search for the dead. 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial Nº 1394-2004-DE/CCFFAA/CDIH-FFAA, Lima, 1 December 2004, § 86.a.(2).
Peru
Peru’s IHL and Human Rights Manual (2010) states:
At all times in an armed conflict, and particularly after an engagement, parties to the conflict must take all possible measures, to the extent permitted by military requirements and taking into account the circumstances and location, in order to:
(2) Search for the dead. 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario y Derechos Humanos para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial No. 049-2010/DE/VPD, Lima, 21 May 2010, § 77(a)(2), p. 227.
Philippines
The Military Instructions (1989) of the Philippines provides: “Evacuation of the dead bodies must be done expeditiously and brought to the nearest morgue.” 
Philippines, Safety of Innocent Civilians and Treatment of the Wounded and Dead, Directive to Commanders of Major Services and Area Commands, Office of the Chief of Staff, General Headquarters of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Ministry of National Defence, 6 September 1989, p. 27, § 4; see also Military Directive to Commanders (1988), p. 30, guideline 4(h)(6).
Russian Federation
The Russian Federation’s Regulations on the Application of IHL (2001) states:
Search for, collection, identification and burial of the dead members of the enemy armed forces as well as of other victims of armed conflicts shall be organized immediately, as soon as the situation permits. 
Russian Federation, Regulations on the Application of International Humanitarian Law by the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation, Moscow, 8 August 2001, § 164; see also §§ 72 (termination of combat operations) and 151 (logistic support).
With regard to internal armed conflict, the Regulations states: “Whenever circumstances permit and particularly after an engagement, all possible measures shall be taken, without delay … to search for the dead.” 
Russian Federation, Regulations on the Application of International Humanitarian Law by the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation, Moscow, 8 August 2001, § 82.
Sierra Leone
Sierra Leone’s Instructor Manual (2007) states:
It is therefore the responsibility that at the end of every engagement soldiers should …
a. Search for and collect the dead.
d. Evacuate the dead body as soon as the tactical situation permits, if in any case you are unable to evacuate, bury or cremate it.
j. The above mentioned actions shall be applied to all dead persons, whether civilian or military, own or enemy forces. 
Sierra Leone, The Law of Armed Conflict. Instructor Manual for the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF), Armed Forces Education Centre, September 2007, pp. 38–39.
Spain
Spain’s LOAC Manual (1996) states: “The belligerent parties must, at all times and particularly after an engagement, take all possible measures to search for and collect … the dead in action”. 
Spain, Orientaciones. El Derecho de los Conflictos Armados, Publicación OR7-004, 2 Tomos, aprobado por el Estado Mayor del Ejército, Division de Operaciones, 18 March 1996, Vol. I, § 7.5.a; see also § 5.2.d.(5).
The manual also states: “The dead bodies not buried, cremated or buried at sea because of the circumstances, shall be evacuated”. 
Spain, Orientaciones. El Derecho de los Conflictos Armados, Publicación OR7-004, 2 Tomos, aprobado por el Estado Mayor del Ejército, Division de Operaciones, 18 March 1996, Vol. I, § 5.2.d.(6).
Spain
Spain’s LOAC Manual (2007) states:
At all times, and particularly after an engagement, the parties to a conflict must take all possible measures to search for and collect those … killed during the fighting.
Local agreements can be made between the parties to the conflict for this purpose. 
Spain, Orientaciones. El Derecho de los Conflictos Armados, Tomo 1, Publicación OR7–004, (Edición Segunda), Mando de Adiestramiento y Doctrina, Dirección de Doctrina, Orgánica y Materiales, 2 November 2007, § 7.5.a; see also §§ 2.4.a.(1) and 5.2.d.(5).
Switzerland
Switzerland’s Basic Military Manual (1987) states: “At all times, and particularly after an engagement, all measures shall be taken to search for and collect the dead, be they enemies or friends.” 
Switzerland, Lois et coutumes de la guerre (Extrait et commentaire), Règlement 51.7/II f, Armée Suisse, 1987, Article 71(1).
Switzerland
Switzerland’s Aide-Memoire on the Ten Basic Rules of the Law of Armed Conflict (2005) states: “I recover and identify wounded, sick, shipwrecked and dead persons without discrimination as soon as the combat situation allows or the superior orders such.”  
Switzerland, The Ten Basic Rules of the Law of Armed Conflict, Aide-memoire 51.007/IIIe, Swiss Army, issued based on Article 10 of the Ordinance for Organization of the Federal Department for Defence, Civil Protection and Sports dated 7 March 2003, entry into force on 1 July 2005, Rule 4.
Togo
Togo’s Military Manual (1996) provides: “Combatants must search for the dead.” It also states: “Military commanders can make an appeal to the civilian population, to aid societies such as the National Red Cross or Red Crescent Societies … to collect … the dead”. 
Togo, Le Droit de la Guerre, III fascicules, Etat-major Général des Forces Armées Togolaises, Ministère de la Défense nationale, 1996, Fascicule II, p. 10.
Ukraine
Ukraine’s IHL Manual (2004) states:
1.4.12. … As soon as the circumstances allow, all parties to an armed conflict shall … organize the search for the dead …
2.5.3.1. … Measures to search for [and] collect … the dead shall be organized as soon as the situation permits. 
Ukraine, Manual on the Application of IHL Rules, Ministry of Defence, 11 September 2004, §§ 1.4.12 and 2.5.3.1.
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The UK Military Manual (1958) provides: “Belligerents must at all times, and particularly after an engagement, take all possible measures to search for the dead”. 
United Kingdom, The Law of War on Land being Part III of the Manual of Military Law, The War Office, HMSO, 1958, § 381.
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The UK LOAC Pamphlet (1981) provides: “Combatants are required … to search for the dead.” 
United Kingdom, The Law of Armed Conflict, D/DAT/13/35/66, Army Code 71130 (Revised 1981), Ministry of Defence, prepared under the Direction of The Chief of the General Staff, 1981, Section 6, p. 22, § 3.
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The UK LOAC Manual (2004) states:
Additional Protocol I encourages the parties to try to make arrangements for joint teams from both sides to search for, identify and recover the dead from battlefield areas, such teams to be respected and protected while carrying out those duties. 
United Kingdom, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Ministry of Defence, 1 July 2004, § 7.38.1.
In its chapter on maritime warfare, the manual provides that “parties to a conflict are also under an obligation, particularly after an engagement, to take all possible measures, consistent with their own security … to search for the dead”. 
United Kingdom, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Ministry of Defence, 1 July 2004, § 13.129.
With regard to internal armed conflicts in which the 1977 Additional Protocol II is applicable, the manual further states:
“Whenever circumstances permit, and particularly after an engagement, all possible measures shall be taken without delay … to search for the dead …”. 
United Kingdom, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Ministry of Defence, 1 July 2004, § 15.44.
United States of America
The US Field Manual (1956) reproduces Article 15 of the 1949 Geneva Convention I. 
United States, Field Manual 27-10, The Law of Land Warfare, US Department of the Army, 18 July 1956, as modified by Change No. 1, 15 July 1976, § 216.
United States of America
The US Air Force Pamphlet (1976) refers to Article 15 of the 1949 Geneva Convention I. 
United States, Air Force Pamphlet 110-31, International Law – The Conduct of Armed Conflict and Air Operations, US Department of the Air Force, 1976, § 12-2(a).
United States of America
The US Operational Law Handbook (1993) states: “The LOW [law of war] requires Parties to a conflict to search for the dead”. 
United States, Operational Law Handbook, JA 422, Center for Law and Military Operations and International Law Division, The Judge Advocate General’s School, United States Army, Charlottesville, Virginia 22903-1781, 1993, p. Q-185.
United States of America
The Annotated Supplement to the US Naval Handbook (1997) provides that the requirement for parties to the conflict, after each engagement and without delay, to take all possible measures to search for and collect the wounded and sick “also extends to the dead”. 
United States, Annotated Supplement to the Commander’s Handbook on the Law of Naval Operations, prepared by the Oceans Law and Policy Department, Center for Naval Warfare Studies, Naval War College, Newport, Rhode Island, November 1997, § 11.4, footnote 19.
United States of America
The US Naval Handbook (2007) states: “As far as military exigencies permit, after each [naval] engagement all possible measures should be taken without delay to search for … and to recover the dead.” 
United States, The Commander’s Handbook on the Law of Naval Operations, NWP 1-14M/MCWP 5-12.1/COMDTPUB P5800.7, issued by the Department of the Navy, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations and Headquarters, US Marine Corps, and Department of Homeland Security, US Coast Guard, July 2007, § 8.6.1.
United States of America
The US Manual on Detainee Operations (2008) states:
Legal Considerations
a. As a subset of military operations, detainee operations must comply with the law of war during all armed conflicts, however such conflicts are characterized, and in all other military operations …
c. The four Geneva Conventions of 1949 are fully applicable as a matter of international law to all military operations that qualify as international armed conflicts … The principles reflected in these treaties are considered customary international law, binding on all nations during international armed conflict. Although often referred to collectively as the “Geneva Conventions,” the specific treaties are:
(1) [1949] Geneva Convention [I] … This convention … provides for the collection of dead persons. 
United States, Manual on Detainee Operations, Joint Chiefs of Staff, 30 May 2008, pp. I-2–I-3.
Yugoslavia, Socialist Federal Republic of
The Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s Military Manual (1988) provides that the civilian population or humanitarian societies may, of their own initiative, collect the dead, while military commanders assist and supervise these groups. 
Yugoslavia, Socialist Federal Republic of, Propisi o Primeri Pravila Medjunarodnog Ratnog Prava u Oruzanim Snagama SFRJ, PrU-2, Savezni Sekretarijat za Narodnu Odbranu (Pravna Uprava), 1988, Article 166.
Bangladesh
Bangladesh’s International Crimes (Tribunal) Act (1973) states that the “violation of any humanitarian rules applicable in armed conflicts laid down in the Geneva Conventions of 1949” is a crime. 
Bangladesh, International Crimes (Tribunal) Act, 1973, Section 3(2)(e).
Botswana
Botswana’s Geneva Conventions Act (1970) provides: “Parties to the conflict, shall, without delay take all possible measures … to search for the dead”. 
Botswana, Geneva Conventions Act, 1970, Article 15, Schedule 1.
Denmark
Denmark’s Military Criminal Code (1973), as amended in 1978, provides:
Any person who uses war instruments or procedures the application of which violates an international agreement entered into by Denmark or the general rules of international law, shall be liable to the same penalty [i.e. a fine, lenient imprisonment or up to 12 years’ imprisonment]. 
Denmark, Military Criminal Code, 1973, as amended in 1978, § 25(1).
Denmark’s Military Criminal Code (2005) provides:
Any person who deliberately uses war means [“krigsmiddel”] or procedures the application of which violates an international agreement entered into by Denmark or international customary law, shall be liable to the same penalty [i.e. imprisonment up to life imprisonment]. 
Denmark, Military Criminal Code, 2005, § 36(2).
Georgia
Georgia’s Law on Displaced Persons (1996), as amended to 2010, states:
The Ministry of Internally Displaced Persons from Occupied Territories of Georgia [shall] support IDPs in the enjoyment of their rights at temporary dwelling spaces, together with the executive authorities and local self-government bodies, who:
j) Take part in activities related to finding the dead and their graves. 
Georgia, Law on Displaced Persons, 1996, as amended to 2010, Article 5(2)(j).
The Law defines an internally displaced person as:
a citizen of Georgia or a stateless person permanently residing in Georgia, who was forced to leave his place of permanent residency and seek asylum within the territory of Georgia due to a threat to his or his relatives’ life, health and freedom, as a result of an aggression by a foreign state, an internal conflict or massive violations of human rights. 
Georgia, Law on Displaced Persons, 1996, as amended to 2010, Article 1.
Georgia
Georgia’s Law on Displaced Persons (1996), as amended in 2011, states:
The Ministry supports the IDPs [internally displaced persons] in [the] enjoyment of their rights in … temporary dwelling spaces[,] together with the executive authorities and local self-government bodies, who:
f) Take part in the activities related to finding the dead and their graves and disappeared as a result of … gross human rights violations. 
Georgia, Law on Displaced Persons, 1996, as amended in 2011, Article 5.4.
The Law, as amended, defines an internally displaced person from the occupied territory as:
Internally displaced person from the occupied territory – IDP a citizen of Georgia or stateless person permanently residing in Georgia, who was forced to leave his place of permanent residency and seek asylum within the territory of Georgia due to the threat to his life, health and freedom or life, health and freedom of his family members, as a result of aggression of a foreign state, internal conflict o[r] mass violation of human rights or [a]s a result of events determined by … paragraph 11 of article 2 of this Law. 
Georgia, Law on Displaced Persons, 1996, as amended in 2011, Article 1(1).
Ireland
Ireland’s Geneva Conventions Act (1962), as amended in 1998, provides that any “minor breach” of the 1949 Geneva Conventions, including violations of Article 15 of the Geneva Convention I, Article18 of the Geneva Convention II and Article16 of the Geneva Convention IV, and of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, including violations of Article 33(4), as well as any “contravention” of the 1977 Additional Protocol II, including violations of Article 8, are punishable offences. 
Ireland, Geneva Conventions Act, 1962, as amended in 1998, Section 4(1) and (4).
Norway
Norway’s Military Penal Code (1902), as amended in 1981, provides:
Anyone who contravenes or is accessory to the contravention of provisions relating to the protection of persons or property laid down in … the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 … [and in] the two additional protocols to these Conventions … is liable to imprisonment. 
Norway, Military Penal Code, 1902, as amended in 1981, § 108.
Spain
Spain’s Royal Ordinances for the Armed Forces (2009) states: “Whenever circumstances for the accomplishment of the mission and the security of the unit permit, [members of the armed forces] must take, without delay, all possible measures to … search for the dead”. 
Spain, Royal Ordinances for the Armed Forces, 2009, Article 108.
Viet Nam
Viet Nam’s Penal Code (1990) punishes “anyone who abandons … dead soldiers on the battlefield”. 
Viet Nam, Penal Code, 1990, Article 271(1).
Viet Nam
Viet Nam’s Penal Code (1999) provides for the punishment of anyone “who deliberately leaves war-wounded and/or war dead on the battlefield”. 
Viet Nam, Penal Code, 1999, § 336.1.
Israel
In its ruling in the Barake case in 2002, dealing with the question of when, how and by whom the mortal remains of Palestinians who died in a battle in Jenin refugee camp should be identified and buried, Israel’s High Court of Justice stated: “Teams would be selected, and include soldiers from the bomb disposal unit, medical and other professional representatives. These teams will locate the bodies.” 
Israel, High Court of Justice, Barake case, Ruling, 14 April 2002, §7.
The Court also stated: “Locating … the bodies is a highly important humanitarian deed. It is derived from the respect to the dead. The respect of every dead.” 
Israel, High Court of Justice, Barake case, Ruling, 14 April 2002, § 9.
Indonesia
According to the Report on the Practice of Indonesia, whenever circumstances permit, all possible measures should be taken to search for the dead. 
Report on the Practice of Indonesia, 1997, Chapter 5.1.
Israel
In 2009, in a report on Israeli operations in Gaza between 27 December 2008 and 18 January 2009 (the “Gaza Operation”, also known as “Operation Cast Lead”), Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that “a special medical coordination centre was set up in the Gaza District CLA [Coordination and Liaison Administration] … which dealt with … evacuation of the … dead from areas of hostilities”. 
Israel, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, The Operation in Gaza 27 December 2008–18 January 2009: Factual and Legal Aspects, 29 July 2009, § 274.
Philippines
According to the Report on the Practice of the Philippines:
In an armed conflict where guerilla warfare is the strategy used, distinguishing between civilians and combatants is very difficult. This is precisely the reason why the Philippines have adopted the same rules for both civilians and combatants with regard to the search for and care of the wounded, sick and dead. 
Report on the Practice of the Philippines, 1997, Chapter 5.1.
Spain
In 2010, in its report to the UN General Assembly on the status of the 1977 Additional Protocols, Spain stated:
Article 85 entitled “Principle of Humanity”, contained in Title IV on Operations [of the Royal Ordinances for the Armed Forces (2009)], clearly embodies the spirit of the [1949] Geneva Convention and its [1977] Additional Protocols, as it provides that “[the] … conduct [of members of the armed forces] in any conflict or military operation must conform to the applicable rules of the international treaties on international humanitarian law to which Spain is a party”.
That is further developed in Chapter VI on Ethics in Operations, which goes into specific duties under international humanitarian law … the search for the … dead. 
Spain, Report on the Status of the Protocols Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and relating to the protection of victims of armed conflict, 5 May 2010, Section 2.
United States of America
In 1987, the Deputy Legal Adviser of the US Department of State affirmed: “We support … the principle that each party to a conflict permit teams to search for … and recover the dead from the battlefield.” 
United States, Remarks of Michael J. Matheson, Deputy Legal Adviser, US Department of State, The Sixth Annual American Red Cross-Washington College of Law Conference on International Humanitarian Law: A Workshop on Customary International Law and the 1977 Protocols Additional to the 1949 Geneva Conventions, American University Journal of International Law and Policy, Vol. 2, 1987, p. 424.
United States of America
According to the Report on US Practice, it is the opinio juris of the United States that all possible measures should be taken to search for the dead. 
Report on US Practice, 1997, Chapter 5.1.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 2003 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Also strongly condemns again the opening of fire by the Israeli army of occupation on ambulances and paramedical personnel and the practice of preventing ambulances and vehicles of the International Committee of the Red Cross from reaching the wounded and the dead in order to transport them to hospital, thus leaving the wounded bleeding to death in the streets.  
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2003/6, 15 April 2003, § 10, voting record: 33-5-15.
UN Commission on Human Rights
In a resolution adopted in 2004 on the question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine, the UN Commission on Human Rights:
Also strongly condemns once more the Israeli army of occupation’s practices of opening fire on ambulances and paramedical personnel and preventing ambulances and vehicles of the International Committee of the Red Cross from reaching the wounded and the dead in order to transport them to hospital, thus leaving the wounded bleeding to death in the streets. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Res. 2004/10, 15 April 2004, § 10, voting record: 31-7-15.
UN Secretary-General
In 1992, in a report concerning Bosnia and Herzegovina, the UN Secretary-General reported that ICRC delegates had recovered the war dead. 
UN Secretary-General, Report pursuant to Security Council resolution 752, 1992, UN Doc. S/24000, 26 May 1992, § 9.
UN Commission of Experts Established pursuant to Security Council Resolution 780 (1992)
In 1994, in its final report on grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions and other violations of IHL committed in the former Yugoslavia, the UN Commission of Experts Established pursuant to Security Council Resolution 780 (1992) noted, with respect to its investigation into mass graves: “The Geneva Conventions require parties to a conflict to search for the dead.” 
UN Commission of Experts Established pursuant to Security Council Resolution 780, 1992, Final report, Annex Summaries and Conclusions, UN Doc. S/1994/674/Add.2 (Vol. I), 31 May 1995, § 503(b).
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ICRC
To fulfil its task of disseminating IHL, the ICRC has delegates around the world teaching armed and security forces that: “As soon as the tactical situation permits, necessary measures shall be taken … to search for the dead”. 
Frédéric de Mulinen, Handbook on the Law of War for Armed Forces, ICRC, Geneva, 1987, § 483.
Delegates also teach that: “Commanders may appeal to the civilian population, to aid societies such as National Red Cross or Red Crescent Societies and to commanders of neutral merchant vessels, yachts or other craft … to collect … the dead”. 
Frédéric de Mulinen, Handbook on the Law of War for Armed Forces, ICRC, Geneva, 1987, § 485.
Turku Declaration of Minimum Humanitarian Standards
The Turku Declaration of Minimum Humanitarian Standards, adopted by an expert meeting convened by the Institute for Human Rights of Åbo Akademi University in Turku/Åbo, Finland in 1990, states: “Every possible measure shall be taken, without delay, … to search for the dead”. 
Turku Declaration of Minimum Humanitarian Standards, adopted by an expert meeting convened by the Institute for Human Rights, Åbo Akademi University, Turku/Åbo, 30 November–2 December 1990, Article 13, IRRC, No. 282, p. 335.