Practice Relating to Rule 146. Reprisals against Protected Persons
Section A. Captured combatants and prisoners of war
Côte d’Ivoire’s Teaching Manual (2007) provides in Book III, Volume 2 (Instruction of second-year trainee officers):
Customary law regarded measures of reprisal taken by a belligerent party as one of the lawful means intended to enforce the application of the law.
However, since these measures often lead to an escalation of the violence and generally strike persons who are not the true culprits, the law of reprisals of belligerent parties has progressively been restricted. Thus, reprisal measures against protected persons and objects are the subject of an express prohibition in the four 1949 Geneva Conventions.
In Book IV (Instruction of heads of division and company commanders), the Teaching Manual provides: “Measures of reprisal against POWs [prisoners of war] are prohibited.”