Page images

(c) Guiding principles for the repatriation of those interned in a

neutral country

There shall be repatriated:

1. Those whose state of health is or is becoming such that they fall within the categories of those eligible for repatriation on the basis of invalidism.

2. The recovered whose mental or physical ability appears to have undergone a marked deterioration.


(a) Special rules for repatriation There shall be repatriated:

1. All prisoners of war who as a result of organic lesions are afflicted with any of the following defects: Loss of limb, paralysis, changes in joints, or similar injury which causes a defect at least as great as the loss of a foot or a hand.

2. All wounded or injured prisoners of war whose condition is such as to make them invalids whose recovery, according to medical opinion, cannot be expected within one year.

3. All sick whose condition is such that their recovery, according to medical opinion, cannot be expected within one year. To this category belong particularly: (a) Progressive tuberculosis of any organ, which, according to

medical opinion, cannot be cured, or at least markedly

bettered, by treatment in a neutral country. (6) Non-tuberculous affections of the respiratory organs of a

presumably incurable nature such as, especially, high grade emphysema with or without bronchitis, bron

chiectasis, severe asthma, gas poisoning, etc. (c) Serious chronic affections of the organs of circulation (for

example, valvular diseases with tendency to disturbances of compensation, relatively serious diseases of the myocardium, pericardium or vessels, particularly inoperable

aneurysms of the large vessels, etc.). (d) Severe chronic affections of the digestive organs. (e) Severe chronic affections of the genito-urinary organs (for

example, all cases of proved chronic nephritis with complete symptomatology, and particularly those already showing cardiac and vascular changes; also chronic

pyelitis and cystitis, etc.). (f) Severe chronic diseases of the central and peripheral nerv

ous system (for example severe neurasthenia and hysteria, all cases of undoubted epilepsy and of exophthalmic goitre).

(9) Blindness of both eyes, or of one eye if the vision of the

other eye is impaired and cannot be corrected to normal by glasses. Diminution of visual acuity so that it cannot be brought up by correcting glasses to 20/40 in at least one eye. Other ocular affections falling in this category

are glaucoma, iritis, choroiditis, etc. (h) Total bilateral deafness or total unilateral deafness, pro

vided that the incompletely deaf ear does not hear ordi

nary conversation at a distance of one meter. (i) All clearly established cases of mental disease. (k) Grave chronic poisoning by metals or other causes (lead or

mercurial poisoning, morphinism, cocainism, alcoholism,

poisoning by gas, etc.). (1) Severe chronic affections of the organs of locomotion

(arthritis deformans, gout, rheumatism with clinically

demonstrable organic changes). (m.) All malignant neoplasms, if they are not removable by

relatively slight operations which do not endanger life. (n) All cases of malaria with demonstrable organic alterations

(considerable chronic enlargements of the liver or spleen,

cachexia, etc.). (0) Grave chronic skin diseases, of such a nature that they do

not constitute a medical indication for internment in a neutral country.

(6) Special rules for internment

Prisoners of war shall be interned if they suffer from any of the following affections:

1. All forms of tuberculosis of any organs, which, according to existing medical knowledge, can be cured or at least markedly improved by methods available in a neutral country (altitude, treatment in sanatoria, etc.).

2. All forms of diseases of the respiratory, circulatory, digestive or genito-urinary organs, of the nerves, the organs of sense, the locomotor apparatus and the skin, which need treatment and which do not belong to the categories prescribed for repatriation and are not acute diseases properly so-called, showing a tendency to ready recovery. The affections here discussed are those which offer better chances of recovery by the application of measures available in a neutral country than if the patients were to be treated in captivity.

Nervous troubles caused directly by the events of the war or by captivity, such as psychasthenia of prisoners (barbed wire disease) and similar cases shall be especially considered.

All cases of this kind which are definitely determined and which, in view of their gravity or their constitutional character, are not entitled to direct repatriation, shall be interned.

Cases of psychasthenia of prisoners (barbed wire disease) which are not cured after three months in a neutral country or which, after that length of time, are not manifestly on the way to definite cure, shall be repatriated.

3. All cases of wounds or injuries and of their consequences, which offer a better chance of cure in a neutral country than in captivity, and which are not on the one hand eligible for repatriation nor on the other insignificant.

4. All cases of duly proved malaria without clinically demonstrable organic alterations (chronic enlargement of liver or spleen, or cachexia, etc.) for which a stay in a neutral country offers particularly favorable prospects of a complete cure.

5. All cases of poisoning (particularly by gas, metals, alkaloids) for which the prospects of cure are especially favorable in a neutral country.

There shall be excluded from internment: 1. All cases of duly proved mental disease.

2. All organic or functional nervous diseases, reputed incurable. (These two categories belong to those which give a right to direct repatriation.)

3. Severe chronic alcoholism.

4. All contagious diseases in the period in which they are transmissible (acute infectious diseases, primary and secondary syphilis, trachoma, leprosy, etc.). Persons infested with vermin must be freed therefrom before internment.


The conditions set forth above should in general be interpreted and applied in a spirit as broad as possible.

This broad interpretation ought to be applied particularly to neuropathic or psychopathic states caused or determined by war experiences or by captivity itself (psychasthenia of prisoners of war) as well as to cases of tuberculosis in all stages.

There will be many cases brought before the travelling commissions and commissions of control which do not conform to the examples given under heading 2. The examples are given as typical only. An analogous list of surgical alterations has not been made, because, except for certain cases which by their very nature are incontestable (amputations), it is difficult to make a list of particular types. Experience has shown that the setting forth of such cases is in practice inconvenient.

All cases which do not correspond exactly to the examples cited are to be judged in accordance with the spirit of the guiding principles given above.






The location and equipment of officers' camps must meet all requirements for proper hygiene and cleanliness. Camps shall not be situated in unhealthful locations. The wire fences shall not be electrified. The buildings shall be suitable for the occupancy of officers, and the rooms shall be sufficiently ventilated and free from draughts. The minimum floor space per head shall be as follows:

(a) Sleeping rooms

Single bed rooms for general and flag officers, 12 square metres.

Single bed rooms for field and commanding officers, 10 square metres.

Rooms with more than one bed for field and commanding officers, 8 square metres.

Rooms for all army captains and subaltern officers, 6 square metres.

(6) Dining rooms, work rooms, and recreation rooms combined

In camps up to 100 officers, 1 square metre.
In camps of from 101 to 300 officers, 0.75 square metre.
In camps of more than 300 officers, 0.50 square metre.

Working rooms and recreation rooms may be used as dining rooms. In such cases they shall be open from reveille to tattoo.

In so far as barracks are used either for sleeping or dining or as work and recreation rooms, they shall as a rule have double walls and wooden floors, but where this is not possible, they shall be otherwise sufficiently protected against cold and damp.

The minimum height for all rooms above mentioned shall be 2.50 metres to the eaves.

[c] Protection against fire

Every reasonable precaution, in accordance with current engineering practice in the Captor State, shall be taken against the possibility of injury to prisoners of war because of fire. Fire orders providing for the safe and orderly disposition of prisoners of war in case of fire shall be posted in all prison barracks and camps in the language of the prisoners of war, and the latter as well as the guards shall be fully informed of such orders. These orders shall specifically provide for the temporary release under guard of prisoners of war confined in cells or special disciplinary inclosures.


Paths habitually in use within the camp shall be kept in serviceable condition even in bad weather.


Each officer shall be provided with a single bed with springs, mattress, pillow, two warm covers of adequate dimensions and two sheets. General and flag officers and field and commanding officers shall be provided with a pillow in addition. The beds shall be raised at least

a twenty centimeters from the floor. Beds shall not be superimposed.

Bed linen shall be changed at least once a month.


Each officer shall have at his disposal in his bedroom a cupboard or other place in which he can keep his personal belongings (clothing, etc.).

Each officer prisoner of war shall have one chair and adequate table space. General and flag officers shall each have two chairs.


All rooms shall be adequately lighted, and the light for every general or flag officer must have a minimum of 16 candle power, and for every field or commanding officer a minimum of 10 candle power, in rooms for two officers of other grades 16 candle power. Where it is not possible to supply electric light, other means of supplying an equal amount of light shall be provided. All rooms shall be heated sufficiently for the purposes for which they are used.


A space for exercise of sufficient size to permit of games being played shall be provided in each camp. In camps having up to 200 prisoners of war a minimum of 30 square metres per man; in camps of over 200 men 25 square meters per man, shall be provided. Paths may be, but gardens shall not be counted in computing this area. Exercise grounds if outside the camp may be used on condition that officers give their paroles as in the case of walks.

« PreviousContinue »