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A set of international rules that govern the treatment of prisoners, the sick and wounded, and civilians during war. Under the Geneva Conventions, for example, ambulances and military hospitals and their staff are officially neutral and are not to be fired upon. Nearly all countries of the world have agreed to the Geneva Conventions.
Note: The first Geneva Convention was drawn up in the late nineteenth century and concerned only the sick and wounded in war. It has been revised several times since to accommodate new wartime conditions.