Practice Relating to Rule 29. Medical Transports
The need to protect non-combatants during naval warfare, as in any other kind of warfare, is indispensable. This is why art. 22 of the Ist Add. Protocol to the Geneva Conventions extend the protection afforded by the provisions of the IInd Geneva Convention to hospital vessels and lifeboats of any type, their personnel and generally to all non-combatants who are wounded, sick or shipwrecked even when they are aboard any kind of vessel. As a consequence, these persons should not be captured by the enemy and in cases where they are found in enemy hands, there is an obligation to be assisted and protected, according to the relevant conventional provisions.