War crimes are "violations of the laws or customs of war", including but not limited to "murder, the ill-treatment or deportation of civilian residents of an occupied territory to slave labor camps", "the murder or ill-treatment of prisoners of war", the killing of hostages, "the wanton destruction of cities, towns and villages, and any devastation not justified by military necessity".
War crimes such as perfidy have existed for many centuries as customary law between civilised countries, Many of these customary laws were clarified in the HagueConventions of 1899 and 1907. The modern concept of war crime was further developed under the auspices of the NurembergTrials based on the definition in the London Charter that was published on August 8, 1945. Along with war crimes the charter also defined crimes against peace and crimes against humanity, which are often committed during wars and in concert with war crimes, but are different offenses under International Law.
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