Practice Relating to Rule 20. Advance Warning
The Russian Federation’s Regulations on the Application of IHL (2001) states: “Whenever the situation permits, during combat operations an advance warning shall be given to the civilian population concerning attacks that may affect it.”
It has been reported that, during the conflict in Chechnya, the Russian Federation dropped leaflets throughout Grozny, ordering all Chechens to leave the city within five days. The leaflets stated: “Those who remain will be viewed as terrorists and bandits. They will be destroyed by artillery and aviation. There will be no more talks. All those who do not leave the city will be destroyed.” A Russian general told reporters that the leaflets were a humanitarian warning meant to protect civilians, not an ultimatum.