Half-mast

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The Austrian flag flying at half-mast before the Austrian Parliament Building, due to the death of President Thomas Klestil, on July 7, 2004

Half-mast (or "half-staff") is flying a flag below the summit of the flagpole (mast). In many countries this is seen as a symbol of respect, mourning, or distress.[1]

The tradition of flying the flag at half-mast began in the 17th century.[citation needed] According to some sources, the flag is lowered to make room for an "invisible flag of death" flying above.[2]

When hoisting a flag that is to be displayed at half-mast, it should be hoisted to the finial for an instant, then lowered to half-mast. Likewise when it is lowered at the end of the day, it is to be hoisted to the finial for an instant, and then lowered.

Examples[edit]

Australia[edit]

The Australian White Ensign flying at half mast. In accordance with British tradition, the flag is flying one flag's width below the top of the mast.

The Flag of Australia is flown half-mast in Australia:

  • On the death of the Sovereign – from the time of announcement of the death up to and including the funeral. On the day the accession of the new Sovereign is proclaimed, it is customary to raise the flag to the peak from 11 a.m.
  • On the death of a member of a royal family.
  • On the death of the Governor-General or a former Governor-General.
  • On the death of a distinguished Australian citizen. Flags in any locality may be flown at half-mast on the death of a notable local citizen or on the day, or part of the day, of their funeral. Recent examples include the death of naturalist Steve Irwin, actor Heath Ledger and esteemed international opera singer Dame Joan Sutherland.
  • On the death of the head of state of another country with which Australia has diplomatic relations – the flag would be flown on the day of the funeral.
  • On ANZAC day the flag is flown half-mast until noon.
  • On Remembrance Day flags are flown at peak till 10:30 am, at half-mast from 10:30am to 11:03am, then at peak the remainder of the day.
  • In the days immediately following the Black Saturday bushfires, many flags of all types were flown at half-mast in spontaneous acknowledgement of the enormous loss of life.
  • On the 22nd February 2009, The Hon Kevin Rudd MP, Prime Minister of Australia, announced that from this time forth The Australian Flag would be flown at half-mast on the 7th of February, in remembrance of the 2009 Victorian bushfire victims.
  • On 19 July 2014, the Australian flag flew half-mast across the country in tribute to the lives lost in the Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 incident.[3]

Cambodia[edit]

Cambodian flags flew at half mast upon the death of King-Father Norodom Sihanouk for 7 days, from 15 October 22 October 2012.

Canada[edit]

The term half-mast is the only term used in Canada. The decision to fly the flag at half-mast on federal buildings rests with the Department of Canadian Heritage. Nowhere in that department's protocol is the term "half-staff" used. The correct term in Canada is always half-mast, as per the Rules For Half-Masting the National Flag of Canada. Federally, the national flag of Canada is flown at half-mast to mark the following occasions:

Occasion or date Protocol or significance
The death of the sovereign From the time of notification of death until sunset on the day of the funeral or memorial service, but the flag is flown at full-mast on the day on which the accession of the new monarch is proclaimed
The death of a Governor General or Prime Minister who dies while in office From the time of notification of death until sunset on the day of the funeral or memorial service
The death of any member of the Royal Family, a former Governor General, the sitting Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, sitting Ministers of the Crown, or a former Prime Minister From the time of notification of death until sunset on the day of the funeral or, if there is to be a memorial service, from the time of notification of death until sunset the following day and from sunrise to sunset on the day of the service
The death of a police officer in the line of duty. The flag could be flown at half-mast from a couple of days to weeks, depending on the ranking of the officer.
April 28 of each year Marking the Day of Mourning for People Killed or Injured in the Workplace (coinciding with World Day for Safety and Health at Work)
June 23 of each year Marking the National Day of Remembrance for Victims of Terrorism
Last Sunday in September of each year Marking Police Officer's National Memorial Day
November 11 of each year Marking Remembrance Day
December 6 of each year Marking the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women

Certain events are also marked by flying the national flag at half-mast on the Peace Tower at Parliament Hill. These include:

Date Significance
April 9 of each year Marking Vimy Ridge Day
Varies The annual memorial service on Parliament Hill to remember deceased parliamentarians
The Flag of Canada, the flag of Québec and the flag of the Royal Canadian Sea Cadets are half masted on board Bagotville Cadet Summer Training Centre, following the train detrailment and explosion of Lac Mégantic, Québec.

On occasion discretion can dictate the flying of the national flag at half-mast, not only on the Peace Tower, but on all federal facilities. Some examples include September 11, 2001, September 11, 2002, the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, the 2005 Mayerthorpe Incident, the death of Pope John Paul II, the 2005 London bombings, the death of Smokey Smith, the state funerals of former U.S. presidents Ronald Reagan and Gerald Ford, and the death of Jack Layton[4]

There are, however, exceptions to the rules of half-masting in Canada: if Victoria Day or Canada Day fall during a period of half-masting, the flags are to be returned to full-mast for the duration of the day. The national flag on the Peace Tower is also hoisted to full mast if a foreign head of state or head of government is visiting the parliament. These exemptions, though, do not apply to the period of mourning for the death of a Canadian monarch. The Royal Standard of Canada also never flies at half-mast, as it is considered representative of the sovereign, who ascends to the throne automatically upon the death of his or her predecessor. Each province can make its own determination of when to fly the flag at half-mast when provincial leaders or honoured citizens pass away.

To raise a flag in this position, the flag must be flown to the top of the pole first, then brought down halfway before the flag is secured for flying. When such mourning occurs, all flags should be flown at that position or not be flown at all, with the exception of flags permanently attached to poles.[5]

A controversy surfaced in April, 2006, when the newly appointed Conservative government discontinued the practice, initiated by the previous Liberal government following the Tarnak Farm incident,[6] of flying the flag at half-mast on all government buildings whenever a Canadian soldier was killed in action in Afghanistan.[7] The issue divided veterans' groups and military families, some of whom supported the return to the original tradition of using Remembrance Day to honour all soldiers killed in action, while others felt it was an appropriate way to honour the fallen and to remind the population of the costs of war.[6] In spite of the federal government's policy, local authorities have often decided to fly the flag at half-mast to honour fallen soldiers who were from their jurisdiction, including Toronto and Saskatchewan.[8]

On April 2, 2008, the House of Commons voted in favour of a motion calling on the government to reinstate the former policy regarding the half-masting of the flag on federal buildings. The motion, however, was not binding and the Cabinet refused to recommend any revision in policy to the Governor General. At the same time, a federal advisory committee tabled its report on the protocol of flying the national flag at half-mast, recommending that the Peace Tower flag remain at full height on days such as the Police Officers National Memorial Day and the National Day or Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women, stating that the flag should only be half-masted on Remembrance Day. At last report, the committee's findings had been forwarded to the House of Commons all-party heritage committee for further study.[9]

Sources:
Public Works and Government Services Canada: Ceremonial Procedures
Department of Canadian Heritage: Rules for Flying the Flag
Department of Canadian Heritage: Rules for Half-masting the National Flag of Canada

China[edit]

Chinese flag at half-mast to mark to mourn for the victims of the 2008 Sichuan earthquake.

The National Flag Law provides for a number of situations on which the flag should be flown at half-mast, and authorizes the State Council to make such executive orders:

Hong Kong[edit]

Hong Kong SAR flag flown at half mast

Similar rules as in China apply for Hong Kong. See Flag of Hong Kong for details.

  • The HKSAR flag was flown at half-mast on August 24–26, 2010, for the fatalities of the Hong Thai Travel tourists in the 2010 Manila hostage crisis.
    • The national flag of the PRC was also flown at half-mast on August 26 in Hong Kong.
  • The HKSAR flag was flown at half-mast on October 4–6, 2012, for the Lamma Ferry Accident victims. The accident happened on October 1, 2012 which 39 died.

Prior to the transfer of sovereignty in 1997, the rules of the half-mast were from the British.

Germany[edit]

Black ribbons indicate mourning on banners that can't be lowered to halfmast

The German flag, the flags of its federal states, etc. are flown at half-mast on:

  • January 27, Day of Remembrance for the Victims of National Socialism
  • National Day of Mourning (33rd Sunday of Ordinary Time)

Greece[edit]

According to Law 851/1978, the only day specified on which the Greek flag is flown at half-mast is the Good Friday. Also, on other national and public mourning days.

India[edit]

The flag of India is flown at halfmast for the death of the President, Vice-President and Prime Minister all over India. For the Speaker of the Lok Sabha and the Chief Justice of The Supreme Court of India, it is flown in Delhi and for a Union Cabinet Minister it is flown in Delhi and the state capitals, from where he/she came. For Minister of State, it is flown only in Delhi. For a Governor, Lt. Governor and Chief Minister of a state or union territory it is flown in the concerned state.

If the intimation of the death of any dignitary is received in the afternoon, the flag shall be flown at halfmast on the following day also at the place or places indicated above, provided the funeral has not taken place before sunrise on that day. On the day of the funeral of a dignitary mentioned above, the flag shall be flown at half-mast at the place of the funeral.

In the event of a halfmast day coinciding with the Republic Day, Independence Day, Mahatma Gandhi's birthday, National Week (6 to 13 April), any other particular day of national rejoicing as may be specified by the Government of India or in the case of a state, on the anniversary of formation of that state, flags are not permitted to be flown at half-mast except over the building where the body of the deceased is lying until it has been removed and that flag shall be raised to the full mast position after the body has been removed.

Observances of State mourning on the death of foreign dignitaries are governed by special instructions issued from the Ministry of Home Affairs (Home Ministry) in individual cases. However, in the event of death of either the Head of the State or Head of the Government of a foreign country, the Indian Mission accredited to that country may fly the national flag on the above-mentioned days.

India observed a 5-day National Mourning, on the passing away of Nelson Mandela on Dec 5, 2013.[10]

Ireland[edit]

The flag of Ireland is flown at half-mast on the death of a national or international figure (i.e. former and current Presidents or Taoisigh) on all prominent government buildings equipped with a flag pole. The death of a prominent local figure can also be marked locally by the flag being flown at half-mast. When the national flag is flown at half-mast, no other flag should be half-masted.

Israel[edit]

Flags in Israel at half mast on the eve of Yom HaShoah

The Flag of Israel is flown at half-mast in Israel:

  • On Yom HaShoah, or the Holocaust Remembrance Day.[11]
  • On Yom Hazikaron, or Fallen Soldiers and Victims of Terrorism Remembrance Day.[12]
  • On other national days of mourning.

Italy[edit]

The Flag of Italy is flown at half-mast in Italy:

Indonesia[edit]

The flag of Indonesia is or has been flown half-mast during several occasions:

During the era of President Suharto, the flying of the Indonesian flag at half-mast has been administered in remembrance of the 1965 30 September Movement. However, after the fall of Suharto, this has not been enforced, mainly due to the controversies behind the movement.

Japan[edit]

The flag of Japan is flown at half-mast upon the death of the Emperor of Japan, other members of the Imperial Family, or a current or former Prime Minister, and also following national disasters such as the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami. In addition to the tradition of half-mast, the national flag topped by black cloth may be flown to designate mourning. See the flag of Japan for more.

South Korea[edit]

Taegeukgi is flown at half-mast on Hyeonchungil (Korean Memorial Day).

Malaysia[edit]

Jalur Gemilang is flown at half-mast all over the country:

  • on the death of the Supreme King, for 7 days from the day of announcement. The states' flag also flown at half-mast also for 7 days, while the national and state royal standard flown at half-mast from the day of the announcement until the day of the coronation of the new ruler;
  • on the death of the Supreme Queen, for 7 days from the day of announcement. Only the states' flag flown at half-mast with Malaysian flag for 7 days;
  • on the death of the Rulers and the Heads of State, from the day of announcement until the day of the funeral. Only the Ruler's state flag is flown for 7 days, effective from the day of announcement, while his royal standard flown at half-mast from the day of announcement until the day of the coronation of the new ruler;
  • on the death of the Prime Minister or his actor of the post, for 3 days from the day of announcement; or
  • when the Prime Minister's Department ordered to flown the Malaysian flag at half-mast for some days.
  • as a mark of respect to the passengers and crew who were onboard Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 and their family members in some states [13]
  • on the death of Sultan Azlan Shah, Sultan of Perak.
  • as a mark of respect to the passengers and crew who were onboard Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 and their family members [14]

Singapore[edit]

  • on the death of the country's first elected President Ong Teng Cheong in February 2002, the flags on the government buildings flew at half mast even if he didn't get state funeral due to Chinese New Year.
  • on the passing away of the late President Wee Kim Wee who had state funeral after he died of prostate cancer in his sleep on 2 May 2005.
  • on the death of the founding father, Dr Goh Keng Swee, he had state funeral on 23 May 2010 and the flags were also flown at half mast.
  • on the death of the late Deputy Prime Minister Toh Chin Chye, who was cremated on 7 February 2012.

Netherlands[edit]

Two flags half-mast at the Martinitoren in Groningen, Netherlands

The flag of the Netherlands is nationally flown at half-mast on

  • remembrance day of the dead (May 4th).[15] After the formal 2-minutes of silence at 8 p.m., the flag used to be hoisted upon the playing of the National Anthem. Since 2001, it is allowed to leave the flag at half-mast, even after the two minutes of silence.

New Zealand[edit]

New Zealand flag at half-mast to mark the death of Sir Edmund Hillary

For both government and public buildings, the flag of New Zealand is flown at half-mast for the following people:[16]

In addition, it can also be flown at half-mast at the request of the Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage. Examples of this are for the deaths of prominent New Zealanders (e.g. Sir Edmund Hillary[17] and Te Arikinui Dame Te Atairangikaahu, the Maori Queen[18]), and for national tragedies (e.g. the Pike River Mine disaster)

According to the Ministry of Culture and Heritage, the position is always referred to as Half Mast. The flag should be at least its own height from the top of the flagpole, though the actual position will depend on the size of the flag and the length of the flagpole.[16]

Pakistan[edit]

The flag of Pakistan is flown half-mast on following days.

Any other day notified by the Government. For example, on the death of Saudi king King Fahd bin Abdul Aziz, the flag was flown at half-mast for seven days (the flag of Saudi Arabia wasn't at half-mast because the flag contains the Shahada). Recently, upon the Assassination of Benazir Bhutto, the flag has been ordered flown at half-mast for three days. Most recently, upon the sad demise of Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin - The spiritual leader of Dawoodi Bohra community, the flag has been ordered flown at half-mast for 2 days on January 17 and 18 to express solidarity with the bereaved community by Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah.

Philippines[edit]

The Flag of the Philippines at half-mast after the death of the Philippine President Corazon Aquino on August 1, 2009.

The flag may be flown at half-mast as a sign of mourning.[19] Upon the official announcement of the death of the President or a former President, the flag should be flown at half-mast for ten days. The flag should be flown at half-mast for seven days following the death of the Vice President, the Chief Justice, the President of the Senate or the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

The flag may also be required to fly at half-mast upon the death of other persons to be determined by the National Historical Institute, for a period less than seven days. The flag shall be flown at half-mast on all the buildings and places where the decedent was holding office, on the day of death until the day of interment of an incumbent member of the Supreme Court, the Cabinet, the Senate or the House of Representatives, and such other persons as may be determined by the National Historical Institute. Such other people determined by the National Historical Institute have included Pope John Paul II, former U.S. President Ronald Reagan.

When flown at half-mast, the flag should be first hoisted to the peak for a moment then lowered to the half-mast position. It should be raised to the peak again before it is lowered for the day.

The flag may also be used to cover the caskets of the dead of the military, veterans of previous wars, national artists, and outstanding civilians as determined by the local government. In such cases, the flag must be placed such that the white triangle is at the head and the blue portion covers the right side of the casket. The flag should not be lowered to the grave or allowed to touch the ground, but should be solemnly folded and handed to the heirs of the deceased.

Also what's unique to the Philippines is that the flags must be half mast immediately in a suffering region where there is a natural disaster like a typhoon or an earthquake.

Russia[edit]

The Flag of the Russian Federation is flown at half-mast and (or) topped by black ribbon:

  • on June 22 as a reminder of the German invasion of the USSR in 1941;
  • on the death of a current or former President of Russia;
  • on disasters causing more than 100 killed - across all the country upon Presidential proclamation;
  • on disasters causing more than 10 killed - in a suffering region upon proclamation of a Governor;
  • on other tragic occasions. For example, the national mourning was proclaimed and all the state flags were flown at half-mast after the Polish President's plane crash near Smolensk, Russia despite the number of casualties was slightly less than 100.

All the regional flags and the departmental ensigns are flown at half-mast on national or regional mourning days as well as the national flag. Firms and non-governmental organizations, embassies and representatives of international organizations often join a mourning, too. The national or regional mourning usually lasts for one day.

Saudi Arabia[edit]

The flag of Saudi Arabia is never flown at half-mast.

The flag of Saudi Arabia is one of two flags in the world that are never flown at half-mast because it shows the Shahada. The other flag is the Flag of Somaliland. Since both bear the concept of oneness of God, the flag is never lowered to half-mast even as a sign of mourning, despite the fact that many other Muslim countries observe the official mourning of deceased Saudi kings by lowering their own national flags.

South Africa[edit]

The flag of South Africa is flown at half-mast as a sign of mourning when ordered by the President of South Africa. Upon the official announcement of the death of the current or former President, the flag should be flown at half-mast for ten days. The flag should be flown at half-mast for seven days following the death of the Deputy President, the Chairperson fo NCOP, the Speaker of the National Assembly or the Chief Justice. [20]

Taiwan[edit]

The national flag of the Republic of China is flown at half-mast on February 28 to mark the anniversary of the 228 Incident. On 5 August 2014, Taiwan flew their flag in half-mast for three days to commemorate the victims of the Kaohsiung gas explosions and TransAsia Airways Flight 222 crash.[23]

Thailand[edit]

The Thai national flag was flown at half-mast from January 2 to January 15, 2008 on the death of Princess Galyani Vadhana, the Princess of Naradhiwas.

Turkey[edit]

The Turkish flag is flown at half-mast all over the country every 10 November, between 09:05 and the sunset, in memory of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, who died on November 10, 1938 at five past nine in the morning. At other times, the government may issue an order for the national flag to be flown at half-mast upon the death of principal figures of the Turkish political life as a mark of respect to their memory (such as Turgut Özal). When such an order is issued, all government buildings, offices, public schools and military bases are to fly their flags at half-mast. To show the sympathy of Turkish people to a foreign leader, flags are also flown at half-mast by governmental order (such as after the deaths of Yasser Arafat or Pope John Paul II).

United Kingdom[edit]

Oratory Church of St Aloysius Gonzaga, Oxford, with the flag of the Holy See flying at half-mast the day after the death of Pope John Paul II.

The Royal Standard, the flag of the British monarch, is never flown at half-mast, because there is always a living monarch: the throne passes immediately to the successor.

There was some controversy in the United Kingdom in 1997 following the death of Diana, Princess of Wales that no flag was flying at half-mast at Buckingham Palace. Until 1997, the only flag to fly from Buckingham Palace was the Royal Standard, the official flag of the reigning British sovereign, which would only fly when the sovereign was in residence at the Palace (or, exceptionally, after the death of the sovereign, the flag of the next senior member of the Royal Family would be raised, if the new sovereign were not present); otherwise, no flag would fly.

In response to public outcry[24] that the palace was not flying a flag at half mast, Queen Elizabeth II ordered a break with protocol, replacing the Royal Standard with the Union Flag at half-mast as soon as The Queen left the Palace to attend the Princess's funeral at Westminster Abbey. The Royal Standard was again flown (at full hoist) on her return to the Palace. Since then, the Union Flag flies from the Palace when the Queen is not in residence, and has flown at half mast upon the deaths of members of the Royal Family, such as Princess Margaret and the Queen Mother in 2002 and other times of national mourning such as following the terrorist bombings in London on 7 July 2005.

In the UK, the correct way to fly the flag at half-mast is two-thirds between the bottom and top of the flagstaff, with at least the width of the flag between the top of the flag and the top of the pole according to the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, which decides the flying, on command of the Sovereign. The flag may be flown on a government building at half-mast on the following days:

  • From the announcement of the death up to the funeral of the Sovereign, except on Proclamation Day when flags are hoisted to full-mast, from 11am until sunset.
  • The funerals of members of the royal family, upon command of the Sovereign.
  • The funerals of foreign rulers, upon command of the Sovereign.
  • The funerals of prime ministers and ex-prime ministers of the UK, upon command of the Sovereign.
  • Other occasions, by special command of the Sovereign.

According to the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, the correct term is Half Mast.(See Flying Flags in the United Kingdom: a Guide to Britain's Flag Protocol)

If a flag flying day coincides with a half-mast flag flying day (including the death of a royal), the flag is flown at full-mast unless a specific command is received from the Sovereign.

If more than one flag is flown on a half-mast day, they must all be flown at half-mast, or not at all. The flag of a foreign nation must never be flown at half-mast on UK soil unless that country has declared mourning.

United Nations[edit]

At the United Nations offices in New York and Geneva, the flag flies at half-mast on the day after the death of a Head of State or a Head of Government of a member state, but generally not during the funeral.[25] Other occasions are at the Secretary-General's discretion. Other offices may follow local practice. To honor the memory of Dag Hammarskjöld the UN issued postage stamps showing its flag at half-mast.

United States[edit]

The flag at the Capitol Building flies at half-staff in honor of President Ronald Reagan, 2004
The United States flag flying at half-staff at sunset.

In the US, the correct term for non nautical use is "half-staff". While the term "half-mast" is commonly used colloquially in place of half-staff, US law and military tradition indicate that "half-mast" is generally reserved to usage aboard a ship, where flags are typically flown from masts.[26][27] However, this distinction not commonly made in international English, where the correct general term remains as "half-mast", regardless of application.

In the United States, the President can issue an executive order for the flag of the United States to be flown at half-staff upon the death of principal figures of the United States government, and others, as a mark of respect to their memory. When such an order is issued, all government buildings, offices, public schools and military bases are to fly their flags at half-staff. Under federal law (4 U.S.C. § 7(f)), the flags of states, cities, localities, and pennants of societies, shall never be placed above the flag of the United States; thus, all other flags also fly at half-staff when the U.S. flag has been ordered to fly at half-staff. It is important to note that there is no penalty for failure to comply with the above law as to enforce such a law would violate the First Amendment.

Governors of the several U.S. states or territories are authorized by federal law to order all U.S. and state flags in their jurisdiction flown at half-staff as a mark of respect for a former or current state official who has died, or for a member of the armed forces who has died in active duty. The governor's authority to issue the order is more restricted than the president's and does not include the discretion to issue the order for state residents who do not meet the criteria stated. Since a governor's executive order affects only his or her state, not the entire country, these orders are distinguished from presidential proclamations.

Under 4 U.S.C. § 7(m) and established traditions by Presidential proclamations, the flag of the United States is to be flown at half-staff in following circumstances:[28]

Federal law requires the flag be flown at half-staff on Peace Officers Memorial Day (May 15), unless that day is also Armed Forces Day. Yearly presidential proclamations also mandate that the flag be flown at half-staff on Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day (December 7),[44] and Patriot Day (September 11).[45]

On October 16, 2001, President George W. Bush approved legislation requiring the United States flag to be lowered to half-staff on all Federal buildings to memorialize fallen firefighters. Pub.L. 107–51 requires this action to occur annually in conjunction with observance of the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Service.[46] The date of the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Service is traditionally the first Sunday in October. It is held at the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial in Emmitsburg, MD.[47]

4 U.S.C. § 7(m) was modified with new legislation signed into effect on June 29, 2007, by President Bush, requiring any federal facility within a region, which proclaims half-staff to honor a member of the U.S. Armed Forces who died on active duty, to follow the half-staff proclamation.[48]

Vietnam[edit]

Apart from the lowered position of the flag, state mourning also warrants a black ribbon 1/10 the width of the flag's width and equal to the length of the flag to be tied at the summit. Variants have the black ribbon wrapped around the flag itself, preventing it from being unfurled.[49]

Zimbabwe[edit]

In Zimbabwe the flag is flown at half-mast at the conferrement of National Hero Status to the deceased. As a first generation republic, adjudication over such a status is currently done by ZANU-PF's politburo.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Flags at half mast
  2. ^ Bartram, G., A Guide to Flag Protocol in the United Kingdom, an extract from the book British Flags and Emblems", The Flag Institute.
  3. ^ "MH17: Australian flags to be flown at half-mast as nation mourns victims". 19 July 2014. 
  4. ^ "Rules for Half-masting the National Flag of Canada". Department of Canadian Heritage. Retrieved 2008-03-31. 
  5. ^ "Flags at Half Mast Everywhere and Amusement Places Closed.". The New York Times. 1901-01-23. Retrieved 2008-03-31. 
  6. ^ a b "Conservatives decide not to lower the Canadian flag to fly the flag at half-mast every time a Canadian soldier is killed". CBC. 2006-04-01. Archived from the original on 2011-01-20. Retrieved 2008-03-31. 
  7. ^ "Peace Tower flag will not be lowered for military deaths". CBC. 2006-04-24. Archived from the original on 2008-06-06. Retrieved 2008-03-25. 
  8. ^ "Sask. flags at half-mast for fallen soldier". CBC. 2006-08-09. Archived from the original on 2009-05-08. Retrieved 2008-03-25. 
  9. ^ Greenaway, Norma (2008-04-02). "Conservatives lose flag vote". CanWest Global Communications. Retrieved 2008-04-13. 
  10. ^ "5-day state mourning in India as a mark of respect to Nelson Mandela - The Times of India". The Times Of India. 
  11. ^ "Holidays — Holocaust Remembrance Day". Retrieved 2010-10-23. 
  12. ^ "Memorial Day Law for the Fallen of Israel's Wars (unofficial translation)". Retrieved 2010-10-23. 
  13. ^ "It falls under their prerogative, says government official"
  14. ^ "PM: National flag at half-mast till Monday"
  15. ^ http://www.minbzk.nl/actueel?ActItmIdt=11867 Vlaginstructie
  16. ^ a b "Flying the New Zealand flag". 
  17. ^ "Sir Edmund Hillary dies". 12 January 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-16. 
  18. ^ "Half-masting of New Zealand flag". Archived from the original on 2009-08-07. Retrieved 2008-01-16. 
  19. ^ "Republic Act No. 8491". Archived from the original on 2007-12-05. Retrieved 2009-06-08.  (archived from the original on 2007-12-05).
  20. ^ "Government Notice: Instructions regarding the flying of the national flag of South Africa". Government of South Africa. 8 June 2001. Retrieved 16 December 2013. 
  21. ^ "Flags to fly at half mast for a week". The Mercury. 20 August 2012. Retrieved 16 December 2013. 
  22. ^ "Nelson Mandela dead: Full address to the nation by President Jacob Zuma". The Independent (London). 5 December 2013. Retrieved 15 December 2013. 
  23. ^ http://www.chinapost.com.tw/taiwan/national/national-news/2014/08/06/414181/Flags-flying.htm
  24. ^ Pierce, Andrew (August 18, 2007). "Royal Family learnt lesson over Princess Diana". The Daily Telegraph (London). Retrieved 2012-03-18. 
  25. ^ http://www.un.org/depts/dhl/maplib/docs/stsgb132.pdf UN flag code
  26. ^ Bartleby: Half-staff
  27. ^ [1] Does a Flag Fly at Half-staff or Half-mast?
  28. ^ 4 U.S.C. § 7(m)
  29. ^ [2] "Nixon's Proclamation 3948 establishing the expectation that the flag will be raised to half-mast upon the death of certain designated officials." Retrieved 2012-12-20.
  30. ^ Obama, Barack (2011-02-28). "Presidential Proclamation--Death of Army Corporal Frank W. Buckles, the Last Surviving American Veteran of World War I", The White House. Retrieved 2011-03-10.
  31. ^ "Flags to Fly at Half-staff for Kennedy". CBS News. August 26, 2009. 
  32. ^ "Honoring the Victims of the Incidents on Tuesday, September 11, 2001" (Press release). White House. September 12, 2001. Retrieved 2008-01-16. 
  33. ^ "President Bush Orders Flags Flown at Half Staff in Honor of Pope John Paul II" (Press release). White House. April 2, 2005. Retrieved 2008-01-16. 
  34. ^ "President Orders Flags Flown at Half-Staff in Honor of Columbia Disaster" (Press release). White House. February 1, 2003. Retrieved 2008-01-16. 
  35. ^ "Proclamation by the President: Honoring the Memory of the Victims of Hurricane Katrina" (Press release). White House. September 4, 2005. Retrieved 2008-01-16. 
  36. ^ "Honoring the Memory of the Victims of the Indian Ocean Earthquake and Tsunamis" (Press release). White House. January 1, 2005. Retrieved 2008-01-16. 
  37. ^ "Proclamation by the President: Death of Coretta Scott King" (Press release). White House. February 6, 2006. Retrieved 2008-01-16. 
  38. ^ "Proclamation by the President: Death of Rosa Parks" (Press release). White House. October 30, 2005. Retrieved 2008-01-16. 
  39. ^ "Honoring the Victims of the Tragedy at Virginia Tech" (Press release). White House. April 17, the Northern Illinois University Valentine's Day Tragedy2007. Retrieved 2008-01-16. 
  40. ^ http://www.defenselink.mil/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=56568
  41. ^ "Obama orders flags at half-staff for Neil Armstrong". USA Today. August 27, 2012. Retrieved January 13, 2013. 
  42. ^ "Obama orders flag lowered half-staff for Boston Marathon bombings". Daily News (New York). Retrieved 2013-04-16. 
  43. ^ Reilly, Mollie (December 5, 2013). "Obama: Flags To Be Flown At Half-Staff In Honor Of Nelson Mandela". Huffington Post. Retrieved 2013-12-06. 
  44. ^ "National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day, 2007" (Press release). White House. December 4, 2007. Retrieved 2008-01-16. 
  45. ^ "Patriot Day, 2007" (Press release). White House. September 4, 2007. Retrieved 2008-01-16. 
  46. ^ "National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Service". The Library of Congress. October 16, 2001. Retrieved 2010-05-06. 
  47. ^ "National Fallen Firefighters Monument". National Fallen Firefighters Foundation. October 1, 1981. Retrieved 2010-05-06. 
  48. ^ "Code Modifications for Half-Staff at a Federal Facility". "When to fly the flag at half mast", gettysburgflag.com. Retrieved 2009-01-04. 
  49. ^ "Cách treo cờ rủ lễ tang đại tướng Võ Nguyên Giáp" (in Vietnamese)

External links[edit]