Practice Relating to Rule 88. Non-Discrimination

Note: For practice concerning non-discrimination towards returning displaced persons, see Rule 132, Section E.
Geneva Convention IV
Article 13 of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV provides that the general protection of populations against certain consequences of war is applicable “without any adverse distinction based, in particular, on race, nationality, religion or political opinion”. 
Convention (IV) relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, Geneva, 12 August 1949, Article 13.
Geneva Convention IV
Article 27, third paragraph, of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV provides:
Without prejudice to the provisions relating to their state of health, age and sex, all protected persons shall be treated with the same consideration by the Party to the conflict in whose power they are, without any adverse distinction based, in particular, on race, religion or political opinion. 
Convention (IV) relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, Geneva, 12 August 1949, Article 27, third para.
Geneva Convention IV
Article 54, first paragraph, of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV provides that, should judges and public officials in the occupied territories abstain from fulfilling their functions for reasons of conscience, “the occupying power may not … take any measures of coercion or discrimination against them”. 
Convention (IV) relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, Geneva, 12 August 1949, Article 54, first para.
Additional Protocol I
Article 69(1) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I provides that the occupying power shall provide food, medical and other supplies necessary for the survival of the civilian population in the occupied territory “without any adverse distinction”. 
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 69(1). Article 69 was adopted by consensus. CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.43, 27 May 1977, p. 245.
Additional Protocol I
Article 70(1) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I provides that the relief actions of the occupying power and of relief societies are to be “conducted without any adverse distinction”. 
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 70(1). Article 70 was adopted by consensus. CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VI, CDDH/SR.43, 27 May 1977, p. 245.
Additional Protocol II
Article 18(2) of the 1977 Additional Protocol II states that the relief actions of the occupying power and of relief societies are to be “conducted without any adverse distinction”. 
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 18(2). Article 18 was adopted by consensus. CDDH, Official Records, Vol. VII, CDDH/SR.53, 6 June 1977, p. 150.
Memorandum of Understanding on the Application of IHL between Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
Paragraph 4 of the 1991 Memorandum of Understanding on the Application of IHL between Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia provides that “all civilians shall be treated in accordance with Article 75 [of the 1977 Additional Protocol I]”. 
Memorandum of Understanding on the Application of International Humanitarian Law between Croatia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Geneva, 27 November 1991, § 4.
Agreement on the Application of IHL between the Parties to the Conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Paragraph 2.3 of the 1992 Agreement on the Application of IHL between the Parties to the Conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina provides: “In the treatment of the civilian population, there shall be no distinction founded on race, religion or faith, or any other similar criteria.” 
Agreement between Representatives of Mr. Alija Izetbegović (President of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina and President of the Party of Democratic Action), Representatives of Mr. Radovan Karadžić (President of the Serbian Democratic Party), and Representative of Mr. Miljenko Brkić (President of the Croatian Democratic Community), Geneva, 22 May 1992, § 2.3.
Argentina
Argentina’s Law of War Manual (1989) restates the provisions of Article 75(1) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I. 
Argentina, 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, § 4.15.
Burundi
Burundi’s Regulations on International Humanitarian Law (2007) states that civilians “must in all circumstances be protected and treated humanely without any adverse distinction”. 
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. 80.
Canada
Canada’s LOAC Manual (1999) states that in occupied territories, “protected persons must receive equal treatment without any adverse distinction based on race, religion, or political opinion”. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Level, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 1999, p. 11-4, § 30.
It also states that Article 75 of the 1977 Additional Protocol I “provides that all persons in the power of a party to the conflict are entitled to at least a humane treatment without adverse discrimination on grounds of race, gender, language, religion, political discrimination or similar criteria”. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Level, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 1999, p. 11-7, § 63.
With regard to non-international armed conflicts, the manual states that “[Additional Protocol II] applies without any adverse distinction founded on race, colour, gender, language, religion or other opinion, national or social origin, wealth, birth or other status, or any other similar criteria”. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Level, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 1999, p. 17-3, § 18.
Canada
Canada’s Code of Conduct (2001) provides that all civilians must be treated humanely and that “subject to favourable considerations based on sex, health or age, [civilians] must be treated with the same consideration and without any adverse distinction based in particular on race, religion or political opinion”. 
Canada, Code of Conduct for CF Personnel, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 4 June 2001, Rule 4, § 2.
Canada
Canada’s LOAC Manual (2001), in its chapter on the treatment of civilians in the hands of a party to the conflict or an occupying power, and, more specifically, in a section entitled “Provisions common to the territories of the parties to the conflict and to occupied territories”, states: “Subject to special provisions relating to health, age or gender, protected persons must receive equal treatment without any adverse distinction based on race, religion or political opinion.” 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 1119.
In the same chapter, in a section entitled “Additional Protocol I”, the manual states:
[Additional Protocol I] provides that all persons in the power of a party to the conflict are entitled to at least a minimum of humane treatment without adverse discrimination on grounds of race, gender, language, religion, political discrimination or similar criteria. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 1135.1.
In its chapter on rights and duties of occupying powers, the manual further states in a paragraph dealing with the rights of inhabitants of occupied territory: “All protected persons must be treated with the same consideration, without any adverse distinction based, in particular, on race, religion or political opinion.” 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 1222.2.
In its chapter on non-international armed conflicts, the manual restates the provisions of common Article 3 of the 1949 Geneva Conventions:
By Common Article 3, the parties to a non-international armed conflict occurring in the territory of a party to the Conventions are obliged to apply, as a minimum, the following provisions:
a. Persons taking no active part in the hostilities, including members of armed forces who have laid down their arms and those placed hors de combat by sickness, wounds, detention, or any other cause, shall in all circumstances be treated humanely, without any adverse distinction founded on race, colour, religion or faith, gender, birth or wealth, or any other similar criteria. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 1708.1.
In the same chapter, the manual further states:
1711. No Adverse Discrimination
1. [Additional Protocol II] applies without any adverse distinction founded on race, colour, gender, language, religion or other opinion, national or social origin, wealth, birth or other status, or on any other similar criteria.
2. [Additional Protocol II] provides that all persons not participating in the conflict or who have ceased to do so are entitled, whether under restriction or not, to respect for their persons, honour and convictions, and religious practices, and are, in all circumstances, to be treated humanely and without adverse distinction. 
Canada, The Law of Armed Conflict at the Operational and Tactical Levels, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 13 August 2001, § 1711.
Canada
Canada’s Code of Conduct (2005) instructs Canadian Forces (CF) personnel:
Military operations in foreign lands expose CF personnel to civilian populations that differ markedly from our own. However different or unusual a foreign land may appear, these civilians are in all circumstances entitled to respect for their persons and property, their honour, their family rights, their religious convictions and practices, and their manners and customs. In your daily interaction with the civilian population, they must at all times be humanely treated and shall not be subjected to acts of violence, threats, or insults. Women and children in particular must not be subjected to rape, enforced prostitution, and any form of indecent assault. All civilians, subject to favourable considerations based on sex, health or age, must be treated with the same consideration and without any adverse distinction based in particular on race, religion or political opinion. 
Canada, Code of Conduct for CF Personnel, Office of the Judge Advocate General, 2005, Rule 4, § 2.
Djibouti
Djibouti’s Manual on International Humanitarian Law (2004) states that the following “are currently considered as war crimes … if committed against any person not or no longer participating in hostilities: … subjecting the civilian population to … other inhuman or degrading practices based on racial discrimination”. 
Djibouti, Manuel sur le droit international humanitaire et les droits de l’homme applicables au travail du policier, Ministère de l’Intérieur, Direction Générale de la Police, 2004, p. 50.
Germany
Germany’s Military Manual (1992) provides that, in case of occupation, “any discrimination for reasons of race, nationality, language, religious convictions and practices, political opinion, social origin or position or similar considerations is unlawful”. 
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, § 533.
Italy
Italy’s IHL Manual (1991) provides that, in occupied territories, civilians shall be treated without any distinction based on sex, race, religion or political opinion. 
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, § 41(b).
Mexico
Mexico’s Army and Air Force Manual (2009) states: “According to the provisions of … [the 1949 Geneva] Conventions, non-combatants, members of merchant marine and civil aircraft crews … must not be discriminated against on the grounds of religion, nationality or political opinions.” 
Mexico, Manual de Derecho Internacional Humanitario para el Ejército y la Fuerza Área Mexicanos, Ministry of National Defence, June 2009, § 73.
Netherlands
The Military Manual (2005) of the Netherlands states: “Although it is permitted temporarily to evacuate civilians, it is prohibited to move them for reasons relating to race, skin colour, religion or belief, gender, birth or social status or any other such criterion.” 
Netherlands, Humanitair Oorlogsrecht: Handleiding, Voorschift No. 27-412, Koninklijke Landmacht, Militair Juridische Dienst, 2005, § 1040.
New Zealand
New Zealand’s Military Manual (1992) provides: “Protected persons must receive equal treatment without any adverse distinction based on race, religion or political opinion.” 
New Zealand, Interim Law of Armed Conflict Manual, DM 112, New Zealand Defence Force, Headquarters, Directorate of Legal Services, Wellington, November 1992, §§ 1114 and 1137.
Nicaragua
Nicaragua’s Military Manual (1996) provides that civilian persons “benefit from the fundamental guarantees without any discrimination”. 
Nicaragua, Manual de Comportamiento y Proceder de las Unidades Militares y de los Miembros del Ejército de Nicaragua en Tiempo de Paz, Conflictos Armados, Situaciones Irregulares o Desastres Naturales, Ejército de Nicaragua, Estado Mayor General, Asesoría Jurídica del Nicaragua, 1996, Article 14(31).
Russian Federation
The Russian Federation’s Regulations on the Application of IHL (2001) states:
Under any circumstances international humanitarian law ensures humane treatment during an armed conflict of persons not directly involved in combat operations … without adverse distinction for reasons of race, colour, faith, birth, wealth or any other similar criteria. 
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, § 4.
Sweden
Sweden’s IHL Manual (1991) states with regard to civilians within an occupied area: “There may be no discrimination on racial, religious or political grounds or the like.” 
Sweden, International Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflict, with reference to the Swedish Total Defence System , Swedish Ministry of Defence, January 1991, Section 6, p. 122.
Switzerland
Switzerland’s Basic Military Manual (1987) provides:
All civilian persons shall benefit from an equal treatment. No one can be disadvantaged because of race, colour, language, religion, political or other opinions, social origin, faith, sex, wealth or any other circumstance. 
Switzerland, Lois et coutumes de la guerre (Extrait et commentaire), Règlement 51.7/II f, Armée Suisse, 1987, Article 148.
Switzerland
Switzerland’s Regulation on Legal Bases for Conduct during an Engagement (2005) states:
Foreign civilians or civilians of an adverse party to a conflict are specifically protected under the law of armed conflict. If they are in the hands of a military unit, they must at all times be treated humanely. Any act of torture, physical or mental ill-treatment, degrading treatment or discrimination as well as measures of reprisal are prohibited. 
Switzerland, Bases légales du comportement à l’engagement (BCE), Règlement 51.007/IVf, Swiss Army, issued based on Article 10 of the Ordinance on the Organization of the Federal Department for Defence, Civil Protection and Sports of 7 March 2003, entry into force on 1 July 2005, § 198.
[emphasis in original]
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The UK Military Manual (1958) prohibits discrimination in the treatment of protected civilians and stipulates that non-discrimination also applies in occupied territories. 
United Kingdom, The Law of War on Land being Part III of the Manual of Military Law, The War Office, HMSO, 1958, §§ 39, 133 and 547.
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The UK LOAC Pamphlet (1981) prohibits discrimination in the treatment of protected civilians. 
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 9, p. 35, § 9.
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The UK LOAC Manual (2004) states n its chapter on the protection of civilians in the hands of a party to the conflict:
All persons are to be treated humanely in all circumstances and “without any adverse distinction based upon race, colour, sex, language, religion or belief, political or other opinion, national or social origin, wealth, birth or other status or on any other similar criteria”. 
United Kingdom, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Ministry of Defence, 1 July 2004, § 9.3.
In its chapter on internal armed conflict, the manual restates the provisions of common Article 3 of the 1949 Geneva Conventions:
Under the terms of Common Article 3, the parties to a non-international armed conflict occurring in the territory of a party to the Conventions are obliged to apply “as a minimum”, the following provisions:
(1) Persons taking no active part in the hostilities, including members of armed forces who have laid down their arms and those placed hors de combat by sickness, wounds, detention, or any other cause, shall in all circumstances be treated humanely, without any adverse distinction founded on race, colour, religion or faith, sex, birth or wealth, or any other similar criteria. 
United Kingdom, The Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Ministry of Defence, 1 July 2004, § 15.4.
United States of America
The US Field Manual (1956) restates Article 13 of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV. 
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, § 252.
United States of America
The US Air Force Pamphlet (1976) refers to Article 27 of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV and states: “Any distinction in treatment based upon race, religion or political opinion is specifically forbidden.” 
United States, Air Force Pamphlet 110-31, International Law – The Conduct of Armed Conflict and Air Operations, US Department of the Air Force, 1976, § 14-4.
Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan’s Law concerning the Protection of Civilian Persons and the Rights of Prisoners of War (1995) provides that in international and non-international armed conflicts, “civilian persons belonging to the adverse party, who are in the hands of the Azerbaijan Republic, are respected and treated humanely without any adverse distinction founded on race, sex, language, religion, national and social origin or any other similar criteria”. 
Azerbaijan, Law concerning the Protection of Civilian Persons and the Rights of Prisoners of War, 1995, Article 14.
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).
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).
Ireland
Ireland’s Geneva Conventions Act (1962), as amended in 1998, provides that any “minor breach” of the 1949 Geneva Conventions, including violations of Articles 13, 27 and 54 of the Geneva Convention IV, and of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, including violations of Articles 69(1) and 70(1), as well as any “contravention” of the 1977 Additional Protocol II, including violations of Article 18(2), 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 that members of the armed forces “[m]ust treat and care for … members of the civilian population … that are in their power without any adverse distinction.” 
Spain, Royal Ordinances for the Armed Forces, 2009, Article 107.
No data.
China
According to the Report on the Practice of China, China protects foreigners in China, provided that they obey local laws, and makes no distinction between persons on the basis of whether they are from a country that is neutral or belligerent in relation to China. 
Report on the Practice of China, 1997, Chapter 5.
UN Security Council
In a resolution adopted in 1982 on Lebanon, the UN Security Council called for “respect for the rights of the civilian populations without any discrimination”. 
UN Security Council, Res. 513, 4 July 1982, § 1, voting record: 15-0-0.
No data.
No data.
European Court of Human Rights
In its judgment in the Cyprus case in 2001, the European Court of Human Rights found, in relation to living conditions of Greek Cypriots in the Karpas region of northern Cyprus, that there had been a violation of Article 3 of the 1950 European Convention on Human Rights in that the Greek Cypriots had been subjected to discrimination amounting to degrading treatment. 
European Court of Human Rights, Cyprus case, Judgment, 10 May 2001, § 311.
No data.
DRC Pledge of Commitment
In 2008, the armed groups party to the DRC Pledge of Commitment, “deeply deploring the insecurity that has prevailed for a long time in the province of North Kivu, causing massive displacements of populations and enormous suffering of civilians as well as massive violations of human rights”, undertook to “strictly observe rules of international humanitarian law and human rights law, notably: [to] halt acts of … discrimination and exclusion, in any form, against the civilian population.” 
Acte d’engagement signé par le CNDP-Mouvement Politico-Militaire, la PARECO/FAP, les Mai-Mai Kasindien, les Mai-Mai Kifuafua, les Mai-Mai Vurondo, les Mai-Mai Mongol, l’UJPS, les Mai-Mai Rwenzori et le Simba avec l’engagement solennel des Représentants de la Communauté Internationale, facilitateurs du présent acte d’engagement – les Nations-Unies, la Conférence Internationale sur la Région des Grands Lacs, les Etats-Unis d’Amérique, l’Union Africaine, l’Union Européenne et le Gouvernement (Pledge of Commitment signed by the CNDP-Mouvement Politico-Militaire, PARECO/FAP, Mai-Mai Kasindien, Mai-Mai Kifuafua, Mai-Mai Vurondo, Mai-Mai Mongol, UJPS, Mai-Mai Rwenzori and Simba with the solemn commitment of the representatives of the international community, facilitators of this pledge of commitment – the United Nations, the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, the United States of America, the European Union and the Government), Goma, 23 January 2008, Preamble and Article III, §§ 1–5.