Protocol to the Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed conflict 1954
The Hague 14 May 1954
- Convention, The Hague 14 May 1954
- Second Protocol, The Hague, 26 March 1999
|The High Contracting Parties are agreed as follows :
1. Each High Contracting Party undertakes to prevent the exportation, from a territory occupied by it during an armed conflict, of cultural property as defined in Article I of the Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, signed at The Hague on 14 May, 1954.
2. Each High Contracting Party undertakes to take into its custody cultural property imported into its territory either directly or indirectly from any occupied territory. This shall either be effected automatically upon the importation of the property or, failing this, at the request of the authorities of that territory.
3. Each High Contracting Party undertakes to return, at the close of hostilities, to the competent authorities of the territory previously occupied, cultural property which is in its territory, if such property has been exported in contravention of the principle laid down in the first paragraph. Such property shall never be retained as war reparations.
4. The High Contracting Party whose obligation it was to prevent the exportation of cultural property from the territory occupied by it, shall pay an indemnity to the holders in good faith of any cultural property which has to be returned in accordance with the preceding paragraph.
5. Cultural property coming from the territory of a High Contracting Party and deposited by it in the territory of another High Contracting Party for the purpose of protecting such property against the dangers of an armed conflict, shall be returned by the latter, at the end of hostilities, to the competent authorities of the territory from which it came.
6. The present Protocol shall bear the date of 14 May, 1954 and, until the date of 31 December, 1954, shall remain open for signature by all States invited to the Conference which met at The Hague from 21 April, 1954 to 14 May, 1954.
7. (a) The present Protocol shall be subject to ratification by signatory States in accordance with their respective constitutional procedures.
(b) The instruments of ratification shall be deposited with the Director General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.
8. From the date of its entry into force, the present Protocol shall be open for accession by all States mentioned in paragraph 6 which have not signed it as well as any other State invited to accede by the Executive Board of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. Accession shall be effected by the deposit of an instrument of accession with the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.
9. The States referred to in paragraphs 6 and 8 may declare, at the time of signature, ratification or accession, that they will not be bound by the provisions of Section I or by those of Section II of the present Protocol.
10. (a) The present Protocol shall enter into force three months after five instruments of ratification have been deposited.
(b) Thereafter, it shall enter into force, for each High Contracting Party, three months after the deposit of its instrument of ratification or accession.
(c) The situations referred to in Articles 18 and 19 of the Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, signed at The Hague on 14 May, 1954, shall give immediate effect to ratifications and accessions deposited by the Parties to the conflict either before or after the beginning of hostilities or occupation. In such cases, the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization shall transmit the communications' referred to in paragraph 14 by the speediest method.
11. (a) Each State Party to the Protocol on the date of its entry into force shall take all necessary measures to ensure its effective application within a period of six months after such entry into force.
(b) This period shall be six months from the date of deposit of the instruments of ratification or accession for any State which deposits its instrument of ratification or accession after the date of the entry into force of the Protocol.
12. Any High Contracting Party may, at the time of ratification or accession, or at any time thereafter, declare by notification addressed to the Director General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, that the present Protocol shall extend to all or any of the territories for whose international relations it is responsible. The said notification shall take effect three months after the date of its receipt.
13. (a) Each High Contracting Party may denounce the present Protocol, on its own behalf, or on behalf of any territory for whose international relations it is responsible.
(b) The denunciation shall be notified by an instrument in writing, deposited with the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.
(c) The denunciation shall take effect one year after receipt of the instrument of denunciation. However, if, on the expiry of this period, the denouncing Party is involved in an armed conflict, the denunciation shall not take effect until the end of hostilities, or until the operations of repatriating cultural property are completed, whichever is the later.
14. The Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization shall inform the States referred to in paragraphs 6 and 8, as well as the United Nations, of the deposit of all the instruments of ratification, accession or acceptance provided for in paragraphs 7, 8 and 15 and the notifications and denunciations provided for respectively in paragraphs 12 and 13.
15. (a) The present Protocol may be revised if revision is requested by more than one-third of the High Contracting Parties.
(b) The Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization shall convene a Conference for this purpose.
c) Amendments to the present Protocol shall enter into force only after they have been unanimously adopted by the High Contracting Parties represented at the Conference and accepted by each of the High Contracting Parties.
(d) Acceptance by the High Contracting Parties of amendments to the present Protocol, which have been adopted by the Conference mentioned in sub-paragraphs (b) and (c), shall be effected by the deposit of a formal instrument with the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.
(e) After the entry into force of amendments to the present Protocol, only the text of the said Protocol thus amended shall remain open for ratification or accession.
In accordance with Article 102 of the Charter of the United Nations, the present Protocol shall be registered with the Secretariat of the United Nations at the request of the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.
IN FAITH WHEREOF the undersigned, duly authorized, have signed the present Protocol.
Done at The Hague, this fourteenth day of May, 1954, in English, French, Russian and Spanish, the four texts being equally authoritative, in a single copy which shall be deposited in the archives of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, and certified true copies of which shall be delivered to all the States referred to in paragraphs 6 and 8 as well as to the United Nations.
Opened for Signature :
From 14 May to 31 December 1954.
The Protocol has been signed by the following States:
| Austria ||31 December 1954|
| Belgium ||14 May 1954|
| Brazil ||31 December 1954|
| Burma ||31 December 1954|
| Byelorussian Soviet Socialist Republic ||30 December 1954|
| [China] (see note 1)||14 May 1954|
| Cuba ||14 May 1954|
| Czechoslovakia ||18 October 1954|
| Democratic Kampuchea ||17 December 1954|
| Denmark ||18 October 1954|
| Ecuador ||30 December 1954|
| Egypt ||30 December 1954|
| El Salvador ||14 May 1954|
| France ||14 May 1954|
| Germany (Federal Republic of)||14 May 1954|
| Greece ||14 May 1954|
| India ||14 May 1954|
| Indonesia ||24 December 1954|
| Iran ||14 May 1954|
| Iraq ||14 May 1954|
| Italy ||14 May 1954|
| Japan ||6 September 1954|
| Jordan ||22 December 1954|
| Lebanon ||25 May 1954|
| Libyan Arab Jamahiriya ||14 May 1954|
| Luxembourg ||14 May 1954|
| Mexico ||29 December 1954|
| Monaco ||14 May 1954|
| Nicaragua ||14 May 1954|
| Norway ||14 May 1954|
| Netherlands ||14 May 1954|
| Philippines ||14 May 1954|
| Poland ||14 May 1954|
| San Marino ||14 May 1954|
| Spain ||14 May 1954|
| Syrian Arab Republic ||14 May 1954|
| Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic ||14 May 1954|
| Uruguay ||14 May 1954|
| Yugoslavia ||14 May 1954 |
Entry into force :
7 August 1956, in accordance with Article 33
Authoritative texts :
English, French, Russian and Spanish
Registration at the UN :
4 September 1956, No. 3511
List in alphabetical order
List in chronological order
Declarations and Reservations :
“In applying the provisions of paragraph 3 of I of the Protocol, Japan will fulfill the obligation under those provisions in a manner consistent with its domestic laws including the civil code. Japan will be, therefore, bound by the provisions of Section I of the Protocol to the extent that their fulfillment is compatible with the above-mentioned domestic laws.” [Original: English]
“[…] DECLARES that, consistent with the constitutional status of Tokelau and taking into account the commitment of the Government of New Zealand to the development of self-government for Tokelau through an act of self-determination under the Charter of the United Nations, this accession shall not extend to Tokelau unless and until a Declaration to this effect is lodged by the Government of New Zealand with the depositary on the basis of appropriate consultation with that territory;” [original: English]. [Original: English]
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
The instruments were accompanied by the following declarations.
“Hereby Declare that the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland makes the following declarations in relation to the Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict with Regulations for the Execution of the Convention, the Protocol to the Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict 1954 and the Second Protocol to the Hague Convention of 1954 for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict 1999 done at the Hague on 14 May 1954, 14 May 1954 and 26 March 1999 respectively:
1. It is the understanding of the United Kingdom that military commanders and others responsible for planning, deciding upon, or executing attacks necessarily have to reach decisions on the basis of their assessment of the information from all sources which is reasonably available to them at the relevant time.
2. The United Kingdom understands the term “feasible” as used in the Second Protocol to mean that which is practicable or practically possible, taking into account all circumstances ruling at that time, including humanitarian and military considerations.
3. It is the view of the United Kingdom that, when referred to in the Second Protocol, the military advantage anticipated from the attack considered as a whole and not only from isolated or particular parts of the attack.
4. The United Kingdom recalls the Declaration made by the Republic of Mauritius on its accession to the Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict with Regulations for the Execution of the Convention 1954 as to the purported territorial application of the Convention.
The United Kingdom rejects the claim contained in the Declaration made by Mauritius that the territorial application of the Convention extends to the Chagos Archipelago including Diego Garcia. In particular, the United Kingdom rejects the claim by the Republic of Mauritius that the Chagos Archipelago, which the United Kingdom administers as the British Indian Ocean Territory, is part of Mauritius. The United Kingdom has no doubt about its sovereignty over the British Indian Ocean Territory/Chagos Archipelago. Mauritius' purported extension of the Convention to this territory is unfounded and does not have any legal effect.” [Original: English]
(1) Signed on behalf of China by its representatives to the United Nations and UNESCO at the time of signature.
China is an original Member of the United Nations, the Charter having been signed and ratified in its name, on 26 and 28 September 1945, respectively, by the Government of the Republic of China, which continuously represented China in the United Nations until 25 October 1971.
China is likewise an original Member of UNESCO, the Constitution having been signed and accepted in its name by the Government of the Republic of China which continuously represented China in UNESCO until 29 October 1971.
On 25 October 1971, the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted Resolution 2758(XXVI), which reads as follows:
''The General Assembly,
'Recalling the principles of the Charter of the United Nations,
'Considering that the restoration of the lawful rights of the People's Republic of China is essential both for the protection of the Charter of the United Nations and for the cause that the United Nations must serve under the Charter,
'Recognizing that the representatives of the Government of the People's Republic of China are the only lawful representatives of China to the United Nations and that the People's Republic of China is one of the rive permanent members of the Security Council,
'Decides to restore all its rights to the People's Republic of China and to recognize the representatives of its Government as the only legitimate representatives of China to the United Nations, and to expel forthwith the representatives of Chiang Kai-chek from the place which they unlawfully occupy at the United Nations and in all the organizations related to it. '
The establishing of the Government of the People's Republic of China, occurring on 1 October 1949, was made known to the United Nations on 18 November 1949. Various proposals were formulated between that date and that of the adoption of the above-quoted resolution with a view to changing the representation of China at the United Nations, but these proposals were not adopted.
On 29 October 1971, the Executive Board of UNESCO, at its 88th session, adopted the following decision (88 EX/Decision 9):
'The Executive Board,
Taking into account the resolution adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 25 October 1971, whereby the representatives of the Peop1e's Republic of China were recognized as the only 1awful representatives of China to the United Nations,
Recalling resolution 396 adopted by the United Nations General Assembly at its fifth regular session on 14 December 1950 recommending that "the attitude adopted by the General Assembly" on the question of the representation of a Member State "should be taken into account in other organs of the United
Nations and in the Specialized Agencies".
Decides that, from today onwards, the Government of the People's Republic of China is the on1y legitimate representative of China in UNESCO and invites the ' Director-General to act accordingly.'
On 29 September 1972 the Secretary-General of the United Nations received the following communication from the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China (translation):
As concerns the multilateral treaties which the defunct Chinese Government signed, ratified or acceded to before the establishing of the Government of the People's Republic of China, my government will examine their terms before deciding, in the light of circumstances, whether they should or not be recognized.
As from 1 October 1949; day of the founding of the People's Republic of China, the Chiang Kai-chek clique has no right to represent China. Its signing and ratifying of any multilateral treaty, or its acceding to any multilateral treaty, by usurping the name of "China", are aIl illegal and void. My government will study these multilateral treaties before deciding, in the light of circumstances, .whether it is or is not appropriate to accede to them.'
On depositing the instrument of acceptance of the Agreement, the Government of Romania stated that it considered the above-mentioned signature as null and void, inasmuch as the only Government competent to assume obligations on behalf of China and to represent China at the international level is the Government of the People's Republic of China.
In a letter addressed to the Secretary-General in regard to the above-mentioned declaration, the Permanent Representative of the Republic of China to the United Nations stated: 'The Republic of China, a sovereign State and member of the United Nations, attended the Fifth Session of the General Conference of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, contributed to the formulation of the Agreement on the Importation of Educational, Scientific and Cultural Materials and duly signed the said Agreement on 22 November 1950 at the Interim Headquarters of the United Nations at Lake Success. Any statement relating to the said Agreement that is incompatible with or derogatory to the legitimate position of the Government of the Republic of China shall in no way affect the rights and obligations of the Republic of China as a signatory of the said Agreement.'