Practice Relating to Rule 25. Medical Personnel
Section A. Respect for and protection of medical personnel
Ireland’s Basic LOAC Guide (2005) states: “Prohibited targets include … medical personnel”.
The manual also states:
Medical personnel engaged in the search for, or the collection, transport, or treatment of the wounded or sick must be respected and protected in all circumstances. …
Medical … personnel include:
- personnel (doctors, orderlies, nurses, stretcher-bearers) assigned, whether permanently or temporarily, exclusively to medical purposes (search for, collection, transportation, diagnosis and treatment of the wounded and sick, and for the prevention of disease);
- personnel (administrators, drivers, cooks, etc.) assigned, whether permanent or temporary, to the administration or operation of medical units or medical transport;
If medical … personnel fall into “enemy” hands, they shall be allowed to continue their duties towards the wounded and sick.
Ireland’s Geneva Conventions Act (1962), as amended in 1998, provides that any “minor breach” of the 1949 Geneva Conventions, including violations of Articles 24–26 of the Geneva Convention I, Article 36 of the Geneva Convention II and Article 20 of the Geneva Convention IV, and of the 1977 Additional Protocol I, including violations of Article 15(1), as well as any “contravention” of the 1977 Additional Protocol II, including violations of Article 9(1), are punishable offences.