Housekeeping Annoucements • Office Hours next week are changed to Wednesday 2-3:30 (drop in) • Assignment reminders • Week of October 16th and Nov 2nd scheduling changes
Sources of International Law • the concept of sources, what gives law authority or legitimacy • general consent of states: ways of expressing this • treaties and customary international law
Article 38(1) – ICJ Statute • international conventions, whether general or particular, establishing the rules expressly recognized by the contesting States; • international custom, as evidence of a general practice accepted as law; • the general principles of law recognized by civilized nations; • judicial decisions and teachings of the most highly qualified publicists…subsidiary means (Art. 59) 2. power to decide a case ex aequo et bono
Treaties ‘…an international agreement concluded between States in written form and governed by international law, whether embodied in a single instrument or in two or more related instruments and whatever its particular designation.’ • treaty, convention, protocol, covenant, charter, statute, act, declaration, concordat, exchange of notes, agreed minute, memorandum of agreement, modus vivendi, or any other appellation • central principle: consent to be bound
Treaties: Essential Vocabulary • full powers • signature (authentication, good faith) • ratification (domestic and international, Article 14 of VCLT) • acceptance, approval, accession • reservations, declarations • contracting state • state party • entry into force • deposit • multilateral, bilateral, law-making
Treaties: Interpretation • Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, articles 31 and 32 • Art 31: general rules of interpretation • in good faith and with ordinary meaning, in context and in light of its object and purpose • in addition to the (full) text, the context shall comprise: • agreements relating to the treaty • instruments made in connection with the treaty • also: subsequent agreements, subsequent practice, any relevant rules of international law • special meanings if established
Article 32 Recourse may be had to supplementary means of interpretation, including the preparatory work of the treaty (*) and the circumstances of its conclusion, in order to confirm the meaning resulting from the application of Art 31, or to determine the meaning when the interpretation according to Art 31: • leaves the meaning ambiguous or obscure; or • leads to a result which is manifestly absurd or unreasonable.