Occupation

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Occupation

 

in international law the temporary seizure of enemy territory by armed forces. It entails definite consequences for participants in an armed conflict. The conditions of occupation are fixed in the Hague (1899 and 1907) and Geneva (1949) conventions on the laws and customs of war. The Geneva Convention of 1949 Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War provides, specifically, for the right of the population of an occupied territory to remain loyal to its own government; the convention also prohibits collective punishment and the expulsion of the population.

In international law occupation is considered a kind of temporary deployment of the troops of one country in the territory of another when a state of war exists between them. During occupation the authority of the occupied state virtually ceases, and administrative control of the territory is exercised by the military command of the occupation troops, who must observe the norms of international law. The occupying power must take steps to regulate the society and economic life of the occupied territory in the interests of the civilian population. Because occupation is a temporary phenomenon, the inclusion of the occupied territory within the occupying state is forbidden. An important element of the occupation is to ensure the safety of the occupation troops, their belongings, and their lines of communication. Military authorities issue unilateral orders with respect to the population and local governmental agencies in the occupied territory and ensure by definite measures of compulsion that they are carried out.

Violations of the norms of international law concerning occupation that are committed by the occupation authorities and members of the occupation troops entail political, material, or moral responsibility for the occupying state or criminal liability for the guilty persons. Liability of states and individual persons may be incurred not only for violation of the laws and customs of war but also for crimes against peace if the occupation resulted from an aggressive war. There are numerous cases from World War I (1914–18) and, especially, World War II (1939–45) where fascist Germany and its allies flagrantly violated the norms of international law, primarily with respect to the civilian population. Germany announced that it was not bound by the international rules and customs of war and set forth the so-called doctrine of repression. Many occupied countries were made part of Germany proper, and in these countries, especially in the temporarily occupied territory of the USSR, Germany instituted a harsh regime of repression and destruction of the civilian population, committing dreadful crimes against humanity.

A distinction should be made between wartime occupation and postwar occupation, which is generally organized by special international agreements of the countries involved and is specifically for a given country or territory in fulfillment of the conditions of a peace treaty.

V. I. KUZNETSOV


Occupation

 

a type of work performed by a person possessing specialized theoretical knowledge and practical skills acquired from training or work experience.

A person’s occupation is usually his main source of income. The name of an occupation is determined by the type of work or official function, by the implements used, or by the object of the work. The division of labor becomes intensified as production develops, as improved tools and production technology are applied, and as new types of production and branches of science emerge. Within such industrial occupations as that of the metallurgist, miner, and builder, there are distinguished such specialized professions as that of the blast-furnace attendant, collier, and concrete worker.

As science and technology progress, some occupations disappear and others emerge. For example, with the appearance of excavating machines, the occupation of excavator was replaced by a new occupation, that of the excavating-machine operator. As coal cutters and combines came into use in coal mines, the occupations of cutter, collier, and loader were eliminated.

Many occupations are subdivided into specialties: machinist toolmaker, machinist-gaugemaker, doctor of internal medicine, and surgeon. As complex mechanization and automation develop and as the organization of production and labor improve, the scientific, technical, and cultural level of workers in material production rises. Occupations involving many skills develop, such as those of machine repairman, operations adjuster, and operator of transfer lines; workers with these skills regulate technological processes and monitor the work of machines. The development of occupations that utilize many skills or combine several specialties makes work more creative and interesting, thus leading to a gradual lessening of distinctions between mental and physical work.

Under socialism, workers may choose occupations that conform with their inclinations and cultural and intellectual interests and that take into consideration the needs of the national economy. Workers are assured of employment in appropriate occupations when different types of general and specialized education are developed and when unemployment does not exist.

A. S. DOVBA

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