Practice Relating to Rule 8. Definition of Military Objectives
Belgium’s Regulations on Armoured Infantry Squads (1972) defines the objective of a mission as “a vital area of land to be conquered or defended”.
Belgium’s Regulations on Tank Squadrons (1982) states that the objective of a tank squadron in attack is “an area of land whose capture requires the enemy’s destruction or withdrawal”.
Belgium’s Regulations on the Tactical Use of Large Units (1994) states: “An objective is the final goal of an action. It is defined as either an area of land of tactical importance or as enemy elements that have to be destroyed or neutralized.”
In an explanatory memorandum submitted to the Belgian Parliament in 1985 in the context of the ratification procedure of the 1977 Additional Protocols, the Belgian Government stated:
The notion of “military objective” must be understood as meaning that a specific zone, as such, which by its location or other criteria enumerated in Article 52 makes an effective contribution to enemy military action, can be considered a military objective.