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The occupying nation shall consider itself merely as the administrator and usufructuary of the public buildings, real estate, forests, and farms belonging to the hostile government and situated within the occupied territory. It shall protect this property and administer it in accordance with the rules governing usufructs.

ARTICLE 56. The property of communes, of institutions devoted to religious worship, charity, and instruction, or to arts and sciences, even when belonging to the government, shall be treated as private property.

Any seizure, destruction, or intentional injury of such institutions, or of historical monuments, or works of art or science is prohibited and should be prosecuted.




FARE. His Majesty, the Emperor of Germany, King of Prussia; etc., etc.:

Animated alike by the desire to diminish, as far as depends on them, the inevitable evils of war; and wishing with this object to adapt to maritime warfare the principles of the Geneva Convention of July 6, 1906, have resolved to conclude a convention for the purpose of revising the convention of July 29, 1899, relative to this question, and have appointed the following as their plenipotentiaries:

[Names of plenipotentiaries.]

Who, after having deposited their full powers, found in good and due form, have agreed upon the following provisions:


Military hospital ships, that is to say, ships constructed or assigned by states specially and solely for the purpose of assisting the wounded, sick, or shipwrecked, the names of which shall have been communicated to the belligerent powers at the beginning or during the course of hostilities, and in any case before they are employed, shall be respected and cannot be captured while hostilities last.

These moreover, are not on the same footing as men-ofwar as regards their stay in a neutral port.


Hospital ships, equipped wholly or in part at the cost of private individuals or officially recognized relief societies, shall likewise be respected and exempt from capture, provided the belligerent power to whom they belong has given them an official commission and has notified their names to the hostile power at the commencement of or during hostilities, and in any case before they are employed.

These ships should be furnished with a certificate from the competent authorities, declaring that they had been under their control while fitting out and on final departure.


Hospital ships, equipped wholly or in part at the cost of private individuals or officially recognized societies of neutral countries, shall be respected and exempt from capture, on condition that they shall have placed themselves under the direction of one of the belligerents, with the previous assent of their own government and with the authorization of the belligerent himself, and that the said belligerent shall have notified their names to the belligerent powers at the commencement of or during hostilities, and in any case before they are employed.


The ships mentioned in Articles 1, 2, and 3 shall afford relief and assistance to the wounded, sick, and shipwrecked of the belligerents independently of their nationality.

The governments agree not to use these ships for any military purpose.

These ships must not in any way hamper the movements of the combatants.

During and after an engagement they will act at their own risk and peril.

The belligerents shall have the right to control and visit them; they can refuse their co-operation, order them off, make them take a certain course, and put a commissioner on board; they can even detain them, if important circumstances require it.

As far as possible the belligerents shall enter on the log of the hospital ships the orders they give them.


The military hospital ships shall be distinguished by being painted white outside, with a horizontal band of green about a metre and a half in breadth.

The ships mentioned in Articles 2 and 3 shall be distinguished by being painted white outside, with a horizontal band of red about a metre and a half in breadth.

The boats of the ships above mentioned, as well as small craft which may be used for hospital work, shall be distinguished by similar painting.

All hospital ships shall make themselves known by hoisting, together with their national flag, the white flag with a red cross provided by the Geneva Convention, and in addition, if under the jurisdiction of a neutral state, by hoisting on the mainmast the national flag of the belligerent under whose direction they have placed themselves.

The hospital ships when detained by the enemy under the provisions of Article 4 shall haul down the national flag of the belligerent to whom they appertain.

The ships and boats above mentioned which wish to be shown, during the night, the consideration which is their due, shall take, with the consent of the belligerent they accompany, the necessary measures in order to make the painting that characterizes them sufficiently apparent.

ARTICLE 6. The distinctive signs provided for in Article 5 can only be used, in time of peace or in time of war, for the protection or to desig. nate the ships therein mentioned.


In the case of an encounter on board a war vessel, the infirmaries (i. e., the hospital wards of the ship) shall be respected and saved to as great an extent as possible.

These infirmaries and their material remain subject to the laws of warfare, but cannot be alienated from their use, so long as they are needed by the wounded or sick.

However, the commanding officer who has them in his power has the right to dispose of them, in a case of important military necessity, by previously taking care of the wounded and sick therein.

ARTICLE 8. The protection due to hospital ships and infirmaries of vessels ceases if they are used to commit acts detrimental to the enemy.

The fact that the personnel of these ships and infirmaries is armed for the maintenance of order and the defense of the wounded and sick, as well as the fact of the presence on board of a wireless telegraphic installation, is not to be considered of a nature to justify the withdrawal of protection.


The belligerents shall be able to appeal to the charitable zeal of the commanders of merchant vessels, yachts, or neutral vessels to take on board and care for the wounded and sick.

The vessels that shall have answered this appeal, as well as those which shall have spontaneously sheltered the wounded, sick, or shipwrecked, shall be benefited by special protection and certain immunities. In no case shall they be captured for the fact of such a cargo; but, excepting promises that may have been made them, they shall be liable to capture for the violations of neutrality they may have committed.

ARTICLE 10. The religious, medical, or hospital staff of any captured ship is inviolable, and its members cannot be made prisoners of war. On leaving the ship they take with them the effects and surgical instruments which are their own private property.

This staff shall continue to discharge its duties while necessary, and can afterwards leave when the commander-in-chief considers it possible.

The belligerents must guarantee to the staff that has fallen into their hands the same allowances and the same salary as the staff of the same grades of their own navy.


The sailors and soldiers who are taken on board, and other persons officially .connected with the army or navy, when sick or wounded, to whatever nation they belong, shall be protected and looked after by the captors.


Every war ship of a belligerent can claim the delivery of the wounded, sick or shipwrecked that are on board military hospital .ships, hospital ships of relief societies or of private parties, merchant vessels, yachts and boats, whatever the nationality of these vessels may be.


If wounded, sick, or shipwrecked persons are sheltered on board a neutral war ship, measures shall be taken to prevent their again taking part in the operations of war.


The shipwrecked, wounded, or sick of one of the belligerents who fall into the hands of the other are prisoners of war. The captor must decide, according to circumstances, whether it is best to keep them or send them to a port of his own country, to a neutral port, or even to a hostile port. In the last event, prisoners thus delivered up to their country cannot serve as long as the war lasts.


The shipwrecked, wounded or sick that are landed in a neutral port with the consent of the local authority shall, unless a contrary arrangement exists between the neutral power and the belligerent powers, be guarded by the neutral power in such manner as to prevent their taking part in the operations of war.

The hospital and internment expenses shall be borne by the power to whom the shipwrecked, wounded, or sick belong.


After each engagement the two belligerent parties shall, in so far as military interests allow them, take measures to search for the shipwrecked, wounded, and sick, to have then protected, as well as the dead, from looting and bad treatment.

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