IRRC No. 287

Dissemination of international humanitarian law in Ecuador

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International humanitarian law is the body of rules (the four 1949 Geneva Conventions and their two Additional Protocols of 1977) governing the rights and obligations of the belligerents in war.In signing and later ratifying the Conventions and their Protocols, the States party thereto undertake not only to respect and ensure respect for humanitarian law in all circumstances, but also to disseminate the relevant texts as widely as possible in time of peace as in time of war, among both the armed forces and police and the civilian population. This is stipulated in Articles 47, 48, 127 and 144 of the four Geneva Conventions respectively, which also require States to include the study of humanitarian law in programmes of military instruction. Moreover, States are duty-bound to incorporate the provisions of humanitarian law in their internal legislation.

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