Practice Relating to Rule 51. Public and Private Property in Occupied Territory

Hague Regulations (1899)
Article 53 of the 1899 Hague Regulations provides:
An army of occupation can only take possession of the cash, funds, and property liable to requisition belonging strictly to the State, depots of arms, means of transport, stores and supplies, and, generally, movable property of the State which may be used for military operations. 
Regulations concerning the Laws and Customs of War on Land, annexed to Convention (II) with Respect to the Laws and Customs of War on Land, The Hague, 29 July 1899, Article 53.
Hague Regulations (1907)
Article 53 of the 1907 Hague Regulations provides:
An army of occupation can only take possession of cash, funds, and realizable securities which are strictly the property of the State, depots of arms, means of transport, stores and supplies, and, generally, all movable property belonging to the State which may be used for military operations. 
Regulations concerning the Laws and Customs of War on Land, annexed to Convention (IV) respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land, The Hague, 18 October 1907, Article 53.
Lieber Code
Article 31 of the 1863 Lieber Code provides: “A victorious army appropriates all public money, seizes all public movable property until further direction by its government.” 
Instructions for the Government of Armies of the United States in the Field, prepared by Francis Lieber, promulgated as General Order No. 100 by President Abraham Lincoln, Washington D.C., 24 April 1863, Article 31.
Brussels Declaration
Article 6 of the 1874 Brussels Declaration provides:
An army of occupation can only take possession of cash, funds, and realizable securities which are strictly the property of the State, depots of arms, means of transport, stores and supplies, and generally, all movable property belonging to the State which may be used for the operations of the war. 
Project of an International Declaration concerning the Laws and Customs of War, Brussels, 27 August 1874, Article 6.
Oxford Manual
Articles 50 and 51 of the 1880 Oxford Manual provide:
C. Rules of Conduct with Regard to Property
(a) Public property
Although the occupant replaces the enemy State in the government of the invaded territory, his power is not absolute. So long as the fate of this territory remains in suspense – that is, until peace – the occupant is not free to dispose of what still belongs to the enemy and is not of use in military operation. Hence the following rules:
Art. 50. The occupant can only take possession of cash, funds and realizable or negotiable securities which are strictly the property of the State, depots of arms, supplies, and, in general, movable property of the State of such character as to be useful in military operations.
Art. 51. Means of transportation (railways, boats, & c.), as well as land telegraphs and landing-cables, can only be appropriated to the use of the occupant. Their destruction is forbidden, unless it be demanded by military necessity. They are restored when peace is made in the condition in which they then are. 
The Laws of War on Land, adopted by the Institute of International Law, Oxford, 9 September 1880, C(a) and Articles 50 and 51.
Report of the Commission on Responsibility
Based on several documents supplying evidence of outrages committed during the First World War, the 1919 Report of the Commission on Responsibility lists violations of the laws and customs of war which should be subject to criminal prosecution, including “confiscation of property”. 
Report submitted to the Preliminary Conference of Versailles by the Commission on Responsibility of the Authors of the War and on Enforcement of Penalties, Versailles, 29 March 1919.
Inter-Allied Declaration against Acts of Dispossession
The 1943 Inter-Allied Declaration against Acts of Dispossession provides:
It is important to leave no doubt whatsoever of their [the authors of the Declaration] resolution not to accept or tolerate the misdeeds of their enemies in the field of property, however these may be cloaked. 
Inter-Allied Declaration against Acts of Dispossession Committed in Territories under Enemy Occupation or Control, as agreed between the Union of South Africa, United States of America, Australia, Belgium, Canada, China, Czechoslovak Republic, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, Greece, India, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Yugoslavia, and the French National Committee, London, 5 January 1943, also known as the London Declaration.
Argentina
Argentina’s Law of War Manual (1969) provides:
An army of occupation can only take possession of cash, funds, and realizable securities which are the property of the State, depots of arms, means of transport, stores and supplies, and, generally, all movable property belonging to the State which may be used for military operations. 
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, § 5.014(2).
Australia
Australia’s Defence Force Manual (1994) states that, in occupied areas, “confiscation is the taking of enemy public movable property without the obligation to compensate the state to which it belongs. All enemy public movable property which may be useable for the operations of war may be confiscated.” 
Australia, Manual on Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Force Publication, Operations Series, ADFP 37 – Interim Edition, 1994, § 1225.
Australia
Australia’s LOAC Manual (2006) states that, in occupied areas, “[c]onfiscation is the taking of enemy public movable property without the obligation to compensate the state to which it belongs. All enemy public movable property which may be useable for the operations of war may be confiscated.” 
Australia, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Australian Defence Doctrine Publication 06.4, Australian Defence Headquarters, 11 May 2006, § 12.48.
The LOAC Manual (2006) replaces both the Defence Force Manual (1994) and the Commanders’ Guide (1994).
Canada
Canada’s LOAC Manual (1999) states:
Confiscation is the taking of enemy public movable property without the obligation to compensate the state to which it belongs. All enemy public movable property which may be usable for military operations may be confiscated. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Level, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 1999, p. 12-8, § 69.
Canada
Canada’s LOAC Manual (2001) states in its chapter on rights and duties of occupying powers:
Confiscation is the taking of enemy public movable property without the obligation to compensate the state to which it belongs. All enemy public movable property which may be usable for military operations may be confiscated. Private property may not be confiscated. Enemy public immovable property may be administered and used but it may not be confiscated. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 1238.
Côte d’Ivoire
Côte d’Ivoire’s Teaching Manual (2007) provides in Book IV (Instruction of heads of division and company commanders):
An army of occupation can only take possession of cash, funds, and realizable securities which are strictly the property of the State, depots of arms, means of transport, stores and supplies, and, generally, all movable property belonging to the State which may be used for military operations. 
Côte d’Ivoire, Droit de la guerre, Manuel d’instruction, Livre IV: Instruction du chef de section et du commandant de compagnie, Manuel de l’élève, Ministère de la Défense, Forces Armées Nationales, November 2007, p. 48.
France
France’s LOAC Manual (2001) incorporates the content of Article 53 of the 1907 Hague Regulations. 
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. 35–36.
Germany
Germany’s Military Manual (1992) provides:
Movable government property which may be used for military purposes shall become spoils of war … Upon seizure it shall, without any compensation, become the property of the occupying State. Such property includes, for instance, means of transport, weapons, and food supplies … The latter shall not be requisitioned unless the requirements of the civilian population have been taken into account … The requirements of the civilian population shall be satisfied first. 
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 KonfliktenHandbuch, August 1992, § 556.
Israel
Israel’s Manual on the Rules of Warfare (2006) states:
The population of occupied areas
International law governs the duty of the army and its authority over populations in occupied areas or in zones under military occupation during battle, The Fourth Geneva Convention includes a complete list of instructions that is binding upon the army in its dealings with the civilian population in an occupied area and regulate the army’s authority (for example, when is the confiscation of property permitted … and more).
The State of Israel claimed in the past that the Convention, at least in part, does not constitute customary international law, however, for political reasons it applies the humanitarian provisions of the Convention de facto, with respect to everything concerning the Occupied Territories. 
Israel, Rules of Warfare on the Battlefield, Military Advocate-General’s Corps Command, IDF School of Military Law, Second Edition, 2006, p. 28.
The Manual on the Rules of Warfare (2006) is a second edition of the Manual on the Laws of War (1998).
Italy
Italy’s IHL Manual (1991) states that, in occupied territory, “cash, funds, realizable securities, depots of arms, means of transportation, stores and in general all movable property belonging to the enemy public administration become the property of the occupying State”. 
Italy, Manuale di diritto umanitario, Introduzione e Volume I, Usi e convenzioni di Guerra, SMD-G-014, Stato Maggiore della Difesa, I Reparto, Ufficio Addestramento e Regolamenti, Rome, 1991, Vol. I, § 42; see also § 49(9).
Mexico
Mexico’s Army and Air Force Manual (2009) states:
The occupying power is prohibited from destroying … property belonging … to … the State and other public authorities and social and cooperative organizations, except where such destruction is rendered absolutely necessary by military operations. 
Mexico, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para el Ejército y la Fuerza Área Mexicanos, Ministry of National Defence, June 2009, § 236.
New Zealand
New Zealand’s Military Manual (1992) provides that, in occupied territory, “confiscation is the taking of enemy public movable property without the obligation to compensate the State to which it belongs. All enemy public movable property which may be usable for the operations of war may be confiscated.” 
New Zealand, Interim Law of Armed Conflict Manual, DM 112, New Zealand Defence Force, Headquarters, Directorate of Legal Services, Wellington, November 1992, § 1336.
Nigeria
Nigeria’s Manual on the Laws of War states:
Movable property in an occupied territory belonging to the enemy state may be seized only if it is useful to the conduct of war. Vehicles, signal equipment, weapons and other equipment required for immediate military use may also be seized …
All movable property, belonging to the enemy state, seized in the battlefield, becomes property of the opposing belligerent. The rules relating to the seizure of private movable property in occupied territories are also applicable to such property seized in the battlefield. 
Nigeria, The Laws of War, by Lt. Col. L. Ode PSC, Nigerian Army, Lagos, undated, §§ 27–28.
Peru
Peru’s IHL Manual (2004) states:
The occupying power has the following obligations towards occupied territories:
(2) refrain from requisitioning foodstuffs, articles or medical supplies available in the occupied territory, except for use by the occupation forces and administration personnel. 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial Nº 1394-2004-DE/CCFFAA/CDIH-FFAA, Lima, 1 December 2004, § 91.c.(2); see also § 64.a.(3).
Peru
Peru’s IHL and Human Rights Manual (2010) states:
The occupying power has the following obligations towards occupied territories:
(2) refrain from requisitioning foodstuffs, medical articles or supplies available in the occupied territory, except for use by the occupation forces and administration personnel. 
Peru, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario y Derechos Humanos para las Fuerzas Armadas, Resolución Ministerial No. 049-2010/DE/VPD, Lima, 21 May 2010, § 82(c)(2), p. 284.
Philippines
The Joint Circular on Adherence to IHL and Human Rights (1991) of the Philippines provides: “Members of the AFP [Armed Forces of the Philippines) and PNP [Philippine National Police] shall inhibit themselves from unnecessary military/police actions that could cause destruction to … public properties.” 
Philippines, Implementation Guidelines for Presidential Memorandum Order No. 393, dated 9 September 1991, Directing the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippines National Police to Reaffirm their Adherence to the Principles of Humanitarian Law and Human Rights in the Conduct of Security/Police Operations, Joint Circular Number 2-91, Department of National Defense, Department of Interior and Local Government, 1991, 2a(4).
Russian Federation
The Russian Federation’s Regulations on the Application of IHL (2001) states in its chapter on the behaviour of forces in occupied territory: “Any destruction of property belonging … to the state or to the public authorities is prohibited, except where such destruction is rendered necessary by military operations.” 
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, § 76.
Spain
Spain’s LOAC Manual (2007) states:
Public movable property. An army of occupation can take possession of cash, funds and realizable securities belonging to the State, depots of arms, means of transport, stores and supplies, and, generally, all movable property belonging to the State which may be used for military operations. 
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, § 2.7.c.(4).
Switzerland
Switzerland’s Basic Military Manual (1987) provides that, in occupied territory, “property belonging to the State or public authorities, to social or cooperative organizations, shall not be destroyed, except where such destruction is rendered absolutely necessary by military operations”. 
Switzerland, Lois et coutumes de la guerre (Extrait et commentaire), Règlement 51.7/II f, Armée Suisse, 1987, Article 169.
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The UK Military Manual (1958) states, regarding public property:
The occupation army is only allowed to seize cash funds and negotiable securities which are strictly State property, stores of arms, means of transport, stores of supplies, and generally, all movable property of the State which can be used for military operations.
Other movable public property, not susceptible of use for military operations, as well as that belonging to the institutions mentioned above, which is to be treated as private property must be respected and cannot be appropriated, for instance, crown jewels, pictures, collections of works of art, and archives. However, papers connected with the war may be seized, even when forming part of archives.
Where there is any doubt whether the property found in the possession of the enemy is public or private, as may frequently occur in the case of bank deposits, stores and supplies obtained from contractors, it should be considered to be public property unless and until its private character is clearly shown. 
United Kingdom, The Law of War on Land being Part III of the Manual of Military Law, The War Office, HMSO, 1958, §§ 612–614.
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The UK LOAC Manual (2004) states:
11.88 Occupying forces may only seize three types of movable property belonging to the occupied state:
a. cash, funds and negotiable securities which are strictly the property of that state;
b. stores of arms and supplies, means of transport and other movable property which can be used for military operations, together with appliances for the transmission of news, wherever situated;
c. public revenue and taxation raised in occupied territory, although the consequence is that the occupying power becomes liable for the costs of administering the occupied territory.
11.89 Other public movable property, not of use for military purposes, must be respected and not appropriated. 
United Kingdom, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Ministry of Defence, 1 July 2004, §§ 11.88 11 .–11.89.
United States of America
The US Field Manual (1956) provides in the case of occupied territory:
Valid capture or seizure of property requires both an intent to take such action and a physical act of capture or seizure. The mere presence within occupied territory of property which is subject to appropriation under international law does not operate to vest title thereto in the occupant.
An army of occupation can only take possession of cash, funds, and realizable securities which are strictly the property of the State, depots of arms, means of transport, stores and supplies, and, generally, all movable property belonging to the State which may be used for operations of war.
All appliances, whether on land, at sea, or in the air, adapted for the transmission of news, or for the transport of persons or things, exclusive of cases governed by naval laws, depots of arms, and, generally, all kinds of ammunition of war, may be seized, even if they belong to private individuals, but must be restored and compensation fixed when peace is made.
All movable property belonging to the State susceptible of military use may be taken possession of and utilized for the benefit of the occupant’s government. Under modern conditions of warfare, a large proportion of State property may be regarded as capable of being used for military purposes. However, movable property which is not susceptible of military use must be respected and cannot be appropriated. 
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, §§ 395, 403 and 404.
[emphasis in original]
Australia
Australia’s Criminal Code Act (1995), as amended to 2007, states with respect to war crimes that are committed in the course of an international armed conflict:
268.51 War crimedestroying or seizing the enemys property
(1) A person (the perpetrator) commits an offence if:
(a) the perpetrator destroys or seizes certain property; and
(b) the property is property of an adverse party; and
(c) the property is protected from the destruction or seizure under article 18 of the Third Geneva Convention, article 53 of the Fourth Geneva Convention or article 54 of Protocol I to the Geneva Conventions; and
(d) the perpetrator knows of, or is reckless as to, the factual circumstances that establish that the property is so protected; and
(e) the destruction or seizure is not justified by military necessity; and
(f) the perpetrator’s conduct takes place in the context of, and is associated with, an international armed conflict.
Penalty: Imprisonment for 15 years.
(2) Strict liability applies to paragraph (1)(c). 
Australia, Criminal Code Act, 1995, as amended to 2007, Chapter 8, § 268.51, p. 335.
Colombia
Colombia’s Military Penal Code (1999) provides for a prison sentence for “anyone who during military service and without proper cause, destroys … public property”. 
Colombia, Military Penal Code, 1999, Article 174.
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 Occupied Territories (2008) states: “Limitation of Economic Activities in the Occupied Territories. 1. The following types of activities shall be prohibited in the Occupied Territories: … d) Use of national resources”. 
Georgia, Law on Occupied Territories, 2008, Article 6(1)(d).
Italy
Italy’s Law of War Decree (1938) states that, in occupied territory, “cash, funds, realizable securities, depots of arms, means of transportation, stores and in general all movable property belonging to the enemy public administration, which may be used for war operations, become the property of the [occupying] State”. 
Italy, Law of War Decree, 1938, Article 60.
Regarding property in enemy territory, the Decree provides: “Arms, ammunition, foodstuffs and any other object belonging to the enemy State are subject to confiscation when directly usable for military purposes.” 
Italy, Law of War Decree, 1938, Article 292.
Philippines
The Articles of War (1938) of the Philippines states:
All public property taken from the enemy is the property of the Government of the Philippines and shall be secured for the service thereof, and any person subject to military law who neglects to secure such property or is guilty of wrongful appropriation thereof shall be punished as a court-martial may direct. 
Philippines, Articles of War, 1938, Article 80.
Spain
Spain’s Penal Code (1995), as amended in 2010, states:
1. Anyone who in the event of an armed conflict commits or orders to be committed any of the following acts shall be punished with four to six years’ imprisonment:
h. Improperly or unnecessarily seizing movable … property in occupied territory …
2. … In all other cases mentioned in the above article, the higher sentence can be imposed when extensive and important destructions are caused to the property, objects or installations or [the acts] are of extreme gravity. 
Spain, Penal Code, 1995, as amended on 23 June 2010, Article 613(1)(h) and (2).
United States of America
Under the US Uniform Code of Military Justice (1950), members of the armed forces “shall secure all public property taken from the enemy for the service of the United States, and shall give notice and turn over to the proper authority without delay all captured or abandoned property in their possession, custody or control”. 
United States, Uniform Code of Military Justice, 1950, Article 103(a).
Yugoslavia, Socialist Federal Republic of
The Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s Criminal Offences against the Nation and State Act (1945) considers that, during war or enemy occupation, “any person who … ordered or committed arson, destruction … of … public property [or] … any transport, … or other material, … or any public property” committed war crimes. 
Yugoslavia, Socialist Federal Republic of, Criminal Offences against the Nation and State Act, 1945, Article 3(3) and (13).
United States of America
In the Flick case before the US Military Tribunal at Nuremberg in 1947, the accused, the principal proprietor of a large group of German industrial enterprises (and four officials of the same group), which included coal and iron mines and steel producing plants, was charged with war crimes, inter alia, for offences against property in the countries and territories occupied by Germany. Flick was found guilty on this count of the indictment. In its judgment, the Tribunal quoted, inter alia, Article 53 of the 1907 Hague Regulations. It also found:
The only exception to the public property rule that the occupying power, or its agents, is limited by the rules of usufruct is the right to “take possession of” certain types of public property under Article 53 [of the 1907 Hague Regulations]. But the exception applied only with respect to certain named properties and “all moveable property belonging to the State which may be used for military operations”, and thus is not applicable to such properties as means of production. 
United States, Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, Flick case, Judgment, 22 December 1947.
United States of America
In the Krupp case before the US Military Tribunal at Nuremberg in 1948, the accused, officials of the Krupp industrial enterprises occupying high positions in political, financial, industrial and economic circles in Germany, were charged with war crimes, inter alia, for the destruction and removal of property, and the seizure of machinery, equipment, raw materials and other property. The Tribunal quoted Article 53 of the 1907 Hague Regulations. It also stated that it “fully concurs with the Judgement of the I.M.T. that the [1907 Hague Convention (IV)], to which Germany was a party, had by 1939 become customary law and was, therefore, binding on Germany not only as Treaty Law but also as Customary”. 
United States, Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, Krupp case, Judgment, 30 June 1948.
United States of America
In the Krauch case (The I.G. Farben Trial) before the US Military Tribunal at Nuremberg in 1948, the accused, officials of I.G. Farben Industrie A.G., were charged, inter alia, with war crimes for offences against property in countries and territories which came under the belligerent occupation of Germany. The charges were regarded as violations of, inter alia, Article 53 of the 1907 Hague Regulations. Some of the accused were convicted on this count. The Tribunal held:
The foregoing provisions of the Hague Regulations are broadly aimed at preserving the inviolability of property rights to both public and private property during military occupancy. They admit of exceptions of expropriation, use, and requisition, all of which are subject to well-defined limitations set forth in the articles.
The payment of a price or other adequate consideration does not, under such circumstances, relieve the act of its unlawful character. Similarly where a private individual or a juristic person becomes a party to unlawful confiscation of public … property by planning and executing a well-defined design to acquire such property permanently, acquisition under such circumstances subsequent to confiscation constitutes conduct in violation of the Hague Regulations.
[I]t is illustrative of the view that offences against property of the character described in the [1943 Inter-Allied Declaration against Acts of Dispossession] were considered by the signatory powers to constitute action in violation of existing international law. 
United States, Military Tribunal in Nuremberg, Krauch case (The I.G. Farben Trial), Judgment, 29 July 1948.
United States of America
In the Von Leeb case (The German High Command Trial) before the US Military Tribunal at Nuremberg in 1948, the accused, former high-ranking officers in the German army and navy, were charged, inter alia, with war crimes and crimes against humanity against civilians in that they participated in atrocities such as wanton destruction of cities, towns and villages and devastation not justified by military necessity. The Tribunal stated: “Most of the prohibitions of both the Hague and Geneva Conventions, considered in substance, are clearly an expression of the accepted views of civilized nations.” It notably mentioned Article 53 of the 1907 Hague Regulations. 
United States, Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, Von Leeb case (The German High Command Trial), Judgment, 28 October 1948.
Iraq
On the basis of the reply by Iraq’s Ministry of Defence to a questionnaire, the Report on the Practice of Iraq states that strict measures should be taken to protect cities that fall under the control of armed forces, including measures to protect and ensure the safety of public property. 
Report on the Practice of Iraq, 1998, Reply by the Ministry of Defence to a questionnaire, July 1997, Chapter 2.3.
Israel
Israel’s IDF General Staff Order No. 50.0303 of 1977 states:
Definitions
1. In this Order:
Occupied Territory – Territory outside the borders of State of Israel that was in enemy hands and passed to IDF [Israel Defense Force] control.
Area Commander – Territory for which the IDF appointed a military governor – the Military Governor. Territory for which no Military Governor was appointed – the Commander of the division whose forces are holding or securing said territory.
Seizure of property – taking over the property, including right of ownership.
Possession of property – taking over administration of property, including using it and benefiting from its produce, without having full ownership.
Land – Land of any kind and any form of possession, buildings, trees or anything else connected to the ground, such as orchards or railroads.
Movable property – Any property that is not land.
Abandoned property – Privately owned land or movable property, whose owner is unknown or had left the occupied area before the occupation or because of it.
General
2. This Order defines the powers of the military authorities regarding enemy property located in occupied territory. This Order does not relate to enemy property on the battlefield. That subject is detailed in General Staff Order 50.0301.
3. To remove all doubt, it should be clear that the provisions of this Order also apply to the police force, when operating under the command of the army owing to call up for reserve duty, or for a military or other type of mission.
4. No land or movable property in occupied territory may be seized or possessed or used without the consent of the owner unless it is necessary for the purposes of war and if allowed by the provisions of this Order.
5. When exercising his powers as per this Order, the Area Commander will take into account the needs of the civilian population of the occupied territory, and will ensure the availability of a supply of food and medical supplies.
6. The Area Commander will not exercise his powers as per this Order, except after consultation with the highest Quartermaster level in the occupied territory (representative of the General Staff-Logistic Branch, or of the command or division Quartermaster. If there is no such representative – the Formation Maintenance Officer, whose forces are in the area or are securing it).
7. In the event of doubt about the status of the property, the military legal adviser of the governing forces must be consulted before exercising powers, as per this Order, and if the governing headquarters are not yet established, with the appropriate Command Advocate.
8. No negotiations will be held with a civilian third party over compensation for property that has been seized or possessed or made use of as per this Order and no confirmations or statements will be offered to any civilian third party, except in accordance with the provisions of this Order.
9. All Commanders must ensure that their subordinates act as follows:
a. They will not commit acts of looting.
b. They will comply with the provisions of this Order and not abuse the powers it grants.
c. They shall not misuse the property covered by this Order.
10. This Order does not detract from what is stated in General Staff Order 33.0133 (Discipline – behavior in accordance with international treaties to which the State of Israel is party), rather supplements it.
11. General Staff – Logistics Branch may appoint a Commander of the Logistic Command or any other position with regard to occupied territory and grant him power to seize and take possession and give instructions regarding use of property, as specified in this command.
12. If a unit has seized land as per this Order, it will report immediately to the appropriate Command Lands Officer who will inform the Building Center and the General Staff-Logistic Branch. The latter will notify those concerned whether or not it had approved the seizure of the land.
13. The provisions of this Order shall deal with four types of property:
a. State-owned lands
b. Privately owned lands
c. State-owned movable property
d. Privately owned movable property
14. For the purpose of this Order, the movable property and lands will be considered state-owned also if owned by a corporation, where the state has shares granting it control over it or its assets or if it has the right to administer it.
Movable property owned by the occupied state
26. Instructions for handling movable goods and property of an enemy state, captured on the battlefield are detailed in General Staff Order 50.0301.
27. Occupation grants the State of Israel ownership and possession rights to movable goods owned by the occupied state that can be used for military operations (such as weapons, supplies, transportation and communication means, money and valuables and documents that are important for the war operations) and thus the IDF is entitled to seize such equipment. The Law of Movable Property, as mentioned above, is to be treated as the law of war booty, i.e. they become property of the State of Israel from the moment of seizure and should be treated according to General Staff Order 50.0301 regarding changes under the circumstances. If movable state property is held in private hands, they will be provided with confirmation of the seizure, according to clauses 30 to 37 below.
28. Movable goods that are the property of an occupied state may not be transferred or used, except according to the Order regulating handling of booty.
29. The provisions of this section do not apply to movable property that is not suitable for military use, and movable goods of the type described below that are private property and are to be treated as specified in sections 30 to 37 below:
a. Funds held by the occupied state, and which are in effect moneys belonging to people or private bodies.
b. Underwater cables linking the occupied territory with a neutral state.
c. Medical materials and medical warehouses of civilian hospitals.
d. Moveable property belonging to a local authority or movable property belonging to religious, charitable, educational, art or science institutions.
e. Art works and antiques.
Seizure of such movable property must always be approved, as specified in Section 30 below.
Obligations regarding enemy property
38. Whoever has acquired seized property, which is held or given for temporary use as per this Order, must take all measures to prevent breakage, damage or loss of the a/m property.
39. Destruction of property as mentioned above or use that compromises its integrity, are permitted only if military necessity so requires. 
Israel, IDF General Staff Order No. 50.0303, Seizure of enemy property in occupied territory, 15 July 1977, §§ 1–14, 26–29 and 38–39.
United States of America
In 1992, in its final report to Congress on the conduct of the Gulf War, the US Department of Defense stated:
In violation of [the 1907 Hague Regulations] … public (municipal and national) property was confiscated … (Confiscation of private property is prohibited under any circumstance, as is the confiscation of municipal public property. Confiscation of movable national public property is prohibited without military need and cash compensation …). 
United States, Department of Defense, Final Report to Congress on the Conduct of the Persian Gulf War, 10 April 1992, Appendix O, The Role of the Law of War, ILM, Vol. 31, 1992, p. 620.
UN Commission on Human Rights (Independent Expert)
In 1996, in a report on the situation of human rights in Somalia, the Independent Expert of the UN Commission on Human Rights described, in a section entitled “Civil war and violations of human rights”, the practices of the different Somali factions, including the fact that the winning faction would engage in destruction of public property. 
UN Commission on Human Rights, Independent Expert on Assistance to Somalia in the Field of Human Rights, Report on the situation of human rights in Somalia, UN Doc. E/CN.4/1996/14/Add.1, 10 April 1996, § 10.
GCC Ministerial Council
In the Final Communiqué of its 36th Session in 1990, the GCC Ministerial Council emphasized that “public … establishments and property must be safeguarded in accordance with the noble stipulations of Islamic law”. It insisted that “the Iraqi authorities must ensure the protection of all public … establishments and all movable … property in the State of Kuwait”. 
GCC, Ministerial Council, 36th Session, Jeddah, 5-6 September 1990, Final Communiqué, annexed to Letter dated 6 September 1990 from Oman to the UN Secretary-General, UN Doc. S/21719, 6 September 1990, p. 3, preamble and § 3.
GCC Supreme Council
In the Final Communiqué of its 11th Session in 1990, the GCC Supreme Council demanded that “the Iraqi régime … must safeguard … public installations and property in accordance with Islamic law, the provisions of the 1949 Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War and the international humanitarian covenants and conventions”. 
GCC, Supreme Council, 11th Session, Doha, 22–25 December 1990, Final Communiqué, annexed to Note verbale dated 26 December 1990 from Qatar to the UN Secretary-General, UN Doc. A/45/908, 27 December 1990, p. 3.
League of Arab States Council
In a resolution adopted in 1990, the League of Arab States Council, with reference to Islamic law, the 1949 Geneva Convention IV, the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights and international covenants and conventions relating to the protection of human rights, decided “to insist that the Iraqi authorities must ensure the protection of all public … establishments and all movable … property in the State of Kuwait, and to regard any measures incompatible with such a commitment as null and void”. 
League of Arab States, Council, Res. 5038, 31 August 1990, annexed to Letter dated 31 August 1990 from Qatar to the UN Secretary-General, UN Doc. S/21693, 31 August 1990, p. 4. (Libya opposed the resolution and Algeria, Iraq, Jordan, Mauritania, Palestine, Sudan, Tunisia and Yemen did not participate in the work of the session.)
No data.
Special Court for Sierra Leone
In the Sesay case before the SCSL, the accused Sesay and Kallon, senior commanders in the Revolutionary United Front (RUF), Junta and Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC)/RUF forces, and the accused Gbao, senior commander in the RUF and AFRC/RUF forces, were each charged with eight counts of crimes against humanity, eight counts of war crimes, and two counts of other serious violations of international humanitarian law. In its judgment in the case in 2009, the Trial Chamber, considering the rights of an occupying power over movable public property in the occupied territory, stated:
[T]he rights of an occupying power to seize or requisition … public property for the needs of the occupying army … are strictly limited. In particular, requisitions in kind must be in proportion to the resources of the country and must be paid for insofar as possible in cash, or alternatively a receipt must be given and the amount owed paid as soon as possible. 
SCSL, Sesay case, Judgment, 2 March 2009, § 987.
[footnotes in original omitted]
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