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Protocol Office Article 2012.04.01 Ban­ner flags at half-mast

Flags in banner format are not flown at half-mast. If flags cannot be flown at half-mast, they should bear black crepe streamers (Section V paragraph 4 of the Federal Government Decree concerning flag displays at federal buildings). Black crepe streamers serve as a symbol of falling tears. Such streamers must be clearly recognizable and in proportion to the flag’s format. 

For banners, black crepe streamers are usually tied to each end of the cross-bar. As a symbol of falling tears, the ends of the streamer may hang at different lengths. The total length of a streamer is twice the width of the banner. The streamer should be 20 cm wide. Streamers in the following lengths should be used with standard-sized banners: 

Banner 120 x 300 cm:
2 streamers 240 x 20 cm

Banner 120 x 400 cm:
2 streamers 300 x 20 cm

Banner 120 x 500 cm:
2 streamers 300 x 20 cm 

Table-top flags are neither flown at half-mast nor draped with black crepe streamers.

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