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Non-Combatant Persons: a Comment to Chapter 11 of the Commander’s Handbook on the Law of Naval Operations

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Chapter Summary

In the history of the development of the law of armed conflict, the year 1987 stood out in more than one respect. This chapter first looks at the term "noncombatant persons" as used in the Commander's Handbook on the Law of Naval Operations. It introduces the applicable treaties, and reviews the various categories of "noncombatant persons" pass, in the same order as they appear in the Handbook: the civilian population in general, and other categories of persons. The focal points are: conditions for recognition and protection as a "noncombatant person", factors entailing loss of protection, and the treatment of the persons in question. The chapter presents protective signs and symbols, the use of distinctive signals, and means and methods of identification in general.

Keywords: civilian population; Commander's Handbook; naval operations; noncombatant persons

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