1. Except where acts of interference derive from powers conferred by treaty, a warship which encounters on the high seas a foreign ship, other than a ship entitled to complete immunity in accordance with articles 95 and 96, is not justified in boarding it unless there is reasonable ground for suspecting that:
- a. the ship is engaged in piracy;
- b. the ship is engaged in the slave trade;
- c. the ship is engaged in unauthorized broadcasting and the flag State of the warship has jurisdiction under article 109;
- d. the ship is without nationality; or
- e. though flying a foreign flag or refusing to show its flag, the ship is, in reality, of the same nationality as the warship
2. In the cases provided for in paragraph 1, the warship may proceed to verify the ship’s right to fly its flag. To this end, it may send a boat under the command of an officer to the suspected ship. If suspicion remains after the documents have been checked, it may proceed to a further examination on board the ship, which must be carried out with all possible consideration.
3. If the suspicions prove to be unfounded, and provided that the ship boarded has not committed any act justifying them, it shall be compensated for any loss or damage that may have been sustained.
4. These provisions apply mutatis mutandis to military aircraft. These provisions also apply to any other duly authorized ships or aircraft clearly marked and identifiable as being on government service.