Practice Relating to Rule 50. Destruction and Seizure of Property of an Adversary
The Soldier’s Rules (1989) of the Philippines instructs soldiers: “Destroy no more than your mission requires.”
The Philippine Army Soldier’s Handbook on Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (2006) provides:
During combat operation:
12. Avoid destroying crops, properties and possessions. During military operations, avoid damaging plants and properties along the way. Avoid using incendiary that […] would set fire combustible materials such as “sawali,” “nipa” and other indigenous materials usually used for huts in the village. If unavoidable, pay for the damaged properties as soon as the combat operations are over or else repair or replace the damages.
After an engagement:
15. Do not burn the huts/house[s] and other possessions of civilians
. Avoid using incendiary that would set fire combustible materials such as “sawali”, “nipa” and other indigenous materials usually used for huts/houses in the villages.
Under the War Crimes Trial Executive Order (1947) of the Philippines, applicable to acts committed during the Second World War, “wanton destruction of cities, towns or villages [and] devastation not justified by military necessity” are war crimes.