CONVENTION ON PROHIBITIONS OR RESTRICTIONS ON THE USE OF CERTAIN CONVENTIONAL WEAPONS WHICH MAY BE DEEMED TO BE EXCESSIVELY INJURIOUS OR TO HAVE INDISCRIMINATE EFFECTS AND PROTOCOLS (1980)
PROTOCOL ON PROHIBITIONS OR RESTRICTIONS ON THE USE OF INCENDIARY WEAPONS (PROTOCOL III)
For the purpose of this Protocol:
1. "Incendiary weapon" means any weapon or munition which is primarily
designed to set fire to objects or to cause burn injury to persons
through the action of flame, heat, or a combination thereof, produced by
a chemical reaction of a substance delivered on the target.
(a) Incendiary weapons can take the form of, for example, flame
2. "Concentration of civilians" means any concentration of civilians, be
throwers, fougasses, shells, rockets, grenades, mines, bombs and other
containers of incendiary substances.
(b) Incendiary weapons do not include:
(i) Munitions which may have incidental incendiary effects, such
as illuminants, tracers, smoke or signalling systems;
(ii) Munitions designed to combine penetration, blast or
fragmentation effects with an additional incendiary effect,
such as armour-piercing projectiles, fragmentation shells,
explosive bombs and similar combined-effects munitions in
which the incendiary effect is not specifically designed to
cause burn injury to persons, but to be used against military
objectives, such as armoured vehicles, aircraft and
installations or facilities.
it permanent or temporary, such as in inhabited parts of cities, or
inhabited towns or villages, or as in camps or columns of refugees or
evacuees, or groups of nomads.
3. "Military objective" means, so far as objects are concerned, any
object which by its nature, location, purpose or use makes an effective
contribution to military action and whose total or partial destruction
capture or neutralization, in the circumstances ruling at the time,
offers a definite military advantage.
4. "Civilian objects" are all objects which are not military objectives
as defined in paragraph 3.
5. "Feasible precautions" are those precautions which are practicable or
practically possible taking into account all circumstances ruling at the
time, including humanitarian and military considerations.
Protection of civilians and civilian objects
1.It is prohibited in all circumstances to make the civilian population
as such, individual civilians or civilian objects the object of attack by
2. It is prohibited in all circumstances to make any military objective
located within a concentration of civilians the object of attack by
air-delivered incendiary weapons.
3. It is further prohibited to make any military objective located within
a concentration of civilians the object of attack by means of incendiary
weapons other than air-delivered incendiary weapons, except when such
military objective is clearly separated from the concentration of
civilians and all feasible precautions are taken with a view to limiting
the incendiary effects to the military objective and to avoiding, and in
any event to minimizing, incidental loss of civilian life, injury to
civilians and damage to civilian objects.
4. It is prohibited to make forests or other kinds of plant cover the
object of attack by incendiary weapons except when such natural elements
are used to cover, conceal or camouflage combatants or other military
objectives, or are themselves military objectives.
Matthew Carroll-Schmidt at 12:10 PM