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Geneva Conventions

Geneva Conventions, 4 international agreements signed by a large majority of sovereign nations for the protection of soldiers and civilians from the effects of war. Convention I derived from a conference in 1864, in which the work of Jean Dunant, founder of the Red Cross, led to an agreement to improve conditions for sick and wounded soldiers in the field. Convention II (1906) dealt with armed forces at sea, Convention III (1929) with treatment of prisoners of war, and Convention IV (1949) with protection of civilians.

See also: Prisoners of war; Red Cross.

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