Safe conduct


Safe conduct

Safe conduct is the situation in time of international conflict or war where one state, a party to such conflict, issues to a person, usually an enemy state's subject, a pass or document to allow the enemy alien to traverse its territory without harassment, bodily harm, or fear of death. Safe conduct is only granted in exceptional circumstances. Safe conduct may be given to an enemy to allow retreat under surrender terms or for a meeting to negotiate, or to a stateless person, or to somebody who for some reason would normally not be able to pass.

The term safe-conduct is also used to mean the document authorizing this security. [http://www.m-w.com/cgi-bin/dictionary?book=Dictionary&va=safe-conduct]

An example of safe conduct is Lenin's "sealed train": a citizen of a country at war with Germany, Russia, he was allowed to travel through Germany, without stopping, to return to Russia. It was in Germany's interest to allow this as it was hoped that he would destabilise Russia. Another example would be the Chieu Hoi program during the Vietnam War.


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  • Safe-conduct — Safe con*duct , v. t. To conduct safely; to give safe conduct to. [Poetic] [1913 Webster] He him by all the bonds of love besought To safe conduct his love. Spenser. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Safe-conduct — Safe con duct, n. [Safe + conduct: cf. F. sauf conduit.] That which gives a safe passage; either (a) a convoy or guard to protect a person in an enemy s country or a foreign country, or (b) a writing, pass, or warrant of security, given to a… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • safe-conduct — [sāf′kän′dukt] n. [ME saufconduit < OFr: see SAFE & CONDUCT] 1. permission to travel through a dangerous area, as in time of war, with protection against arrest or harm 2. a written pass giving such permission 3. the act of conducting in… …   English World dictionary

  • safe conduct — n [U and C] ↑safe passage …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • safe conduct — noun count or uncount SAFE PASSAGE …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • safe conduct — index protection, security (safety) Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • safe conduct — also safe conduct N UNCOUNT: also a N If you are given safe conduct, the authorities officially allow you to travel somewhere, guaranteeing that you will not be arrested or harmed while doing so. Her family was given safe conduct to Britain when… …   English dictionary

  • safe conduct — UK / US noun [countable/uncountable] Word forms safe conduct : singular safe conduct plural safe conducts safe passage …   English dictionary

  • safe-conduct — noun Etymology: Middle English sauf conduit, from Anglo French, safe conduct Date: 14th century 1. protection given a person passing through a military zone or occupied area 2. a document authorizing safe conduct …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • safe-conduct — n. to issue a safe conduct * * * [ˌseɪf kɒndʌkɪ] to issue a safe conduct …   Combinatory dictionary