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2 International Humanitarian Law

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Chapter Summary

Geneva Law, consisting of the four Geneva Conventions of 1949 and the three Additional Protocols of 1977 and 2005, contends with the victims of war, i.e. wounded, sick and shipwrecked combatants, civilians, and prisoners of war, and their protection. This chapter focuses on protected persons in need of medical attention, namely the wounded and sick, prisoners of war, and civilians, on the one hand, and on the protection of the medical personnel and more specifically physicians on the other. Physicians are among the most essential actors in an armed conflict. They make armed conflicts bearable by treating the victims and ensuring that the loss of life is kept in bounds. Hence, they are also protected. Their protection includes the protection of their medical duties, which are essential for the treatment and protection of those in need of medical care.

Keywords: armed conflicts; Geneva Law; physicians



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