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Mr. Vladimir Kopal

Mr. Vladimír Kopal
Professor of International Law
West Bohemian University
Pilsen, Czech Republic
Chairman, Legal Subcommittee of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space


Biography Biography in PDF

Law of Outer Space
The Progressive Development of International Space Law by the United Nations
During the last five decades, an international legal basis for space activities was built up. It was established in the United Nations through its Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space and its Legal Subcommittee, which contributed to the progressive development of international law in a special field of outer space. The present system of space law now comprises the UN Space Treaties and Principles, other international space agreements and also national laws, which complete international norms by national regulations of activities performed under the jurisdiction of individual States.

Original Lecture
English  (54 minutes)

Lecture with simultaneous interpretation
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Law of Outer Space
The Progressive Development of International Space Law by the United Nations
A. Legal Instruments
The Antarctic Treaty, Washington, 1 December 1959, United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 402, p. 71.

Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space, including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies, New York, 19 December 1966, United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 610, p. 205.

Agreement on the Rescue of Astronauts, the Return of Astronauts and the Return of Objects Launched into Outer Space, Opened for signature at London, Moscow and Washington on 22 April 1968, United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 672, p. 119.

Convention on International Liability for Damage Caused by Space Objects, Opened for signature at London, Moscow and Washington on 9 March 1972, United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 961, p. 187.

Convention on Registration of Objects Launched into Outer Space, New York, 12 November 1974, United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 1023, p. 15.

Agreement Governing the Activities of States on the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies, New York, 5 December 1979, United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 1363, p. 3.

United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, Montego Bay, 10 December 1982, United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 1833, p.3.

Convention on International Interests in Mobile Equipment (and Protocols), Cape Town, 16 November 2001.
B. Documents
General Assembly resolution 1348 (XIII) of 13 December 1958 (Question of the peaceful use of outer space).

General Assembly resolution 1472 (XIV) of 12 December 1959 (International co-operation in the peaceful uses of outer space).

General Assembly resolution 1721 (XVI) of 20 December 1961 (International co-operation in the peaceful uses of outer space).

General Assembly resolution 1962 (XVIII) of 13 December 1963 (Declaration of Legal Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space).

General Assembly resolution 37/92 of 10 December 1982 (Principles Governing the Use by States of Artificial Earth Satellites for International Direct Television Broadcasting).

General Assembly resolution 41/65 of 3 December 1986 (Principles relating to remote sensing of the Earth from outer space).

General Assembly resolution 47/68 of 14 December 1992 (Principles Relevant to the Use of Nuclear Power Sources in Outer Space).

General Assembly resolution 51/122 of 13 December 1996 (Declaration on International Cooperation in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space for the Benefit and in the Interest of All States, Taking into Particular Account the Needs of Developing Countries).

General Assembly resolution 59/115 of 10 December 2004 (Application of the concept of the “launching State”).

Questionnaire on possible options for future development of international space law, Working Paper submitted by Kazakhstan, the Russian Federation and Ukraine (A/AC.105/C.2/L.259, 14 April 2005).

General Assembly resolution 62/101 of 17 December 2007 (Recommendations on enhancing the practice of States and international intergovernmental organizations in registering space objects).

Report of the COPUOS Scientific and Technical Subcommittee on its forty-fourth session, held in Vienna from 12 to 23 February 2007 (A/AC.105/890).

Report of the COPUOS Legal Subcommittee on its forty-sixth session, held in Vienna from 26 March to 5 April 2007 (A/AC.105/891).

Report of the COPUOS Legal Subcommittee on its forty-seventh session (A/AC.105/917, 31 March – 11 April 2008).

Joint statement on the benefits of adherence to the Agreement Governing the Activities of States on the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies by States parties to the Agreement (A/AC.105/C.2/L.272, 3 April 2008).
C. Recommended Reading
LACHS, Manfred, 'The Law of Outer Space. An Experience in Contemporary Law-Making, Sijthoff Leiden, 1972.

JASENTULIYANA, N. and LEE, Roy S.K., eds., Manual on Space Law, Vol. I and II, Oceana Publications, Inc., Dobbs Ferry, New York, Sijthoff and Noordhoff/Alphen aan den Rijn, 1979.

CHRISTOL, Carl Q., The Modern International Law of Outer Space, Pargamon Press, New York, Oxford, Toronto, Sydney, Paris, Frank¬furt, 1982.

BENKÖ, Marietta, de GRAAF Willem and REIJNEN, Gijsbertha C.M., Space Law in the United Nations, Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, Dordrecht, Boston, Lancaster, 1985.

JASENTULIYANA, N., A Survey of Space Law as Developed by the United Nations, in Perspectives on International Law, JASENTULIANA, N. ed., Kluwer Law International, 1995, Chapter 16.

KOLOSOV, Yu. M. , Mezhdunarodnoe kosmicheskoe pravo, in Mezhdunarodnoe pravo, KOLOSOV, Yu. M. and KUZNECOV, V.I., eds., Mezhdunarodnie otnochenia, Moskva, 1995, Glava XXII.

KOPAL, Vladimir, United Nations and the Progressive Develop¬ment of International Space Law, in The Finnish Yearbook of International Law, Vol. VII, 1996, pp. 1 s.

CHENG, Bin, Studies in International Space Law, Oxford Univer¬sity Press, Oxford, 1997.

YAKOVENKO, A.V., Sovremennie kosmicheskie proekty. Mezhdunarodno pravovie problemy, Mezhdunarodnie otnocheniya, Moskva, 2000.

von KRIES, Wulf, SCHMIDT-TEDD, Bernhard, SCHROGL, Kai-Uwe, Grundzüge des Raumfahrtrechts, Rahmenbestimmungen und Anwendungs/gebiete, Verlag C.H. Beck, München, 2002.

DIEDERIKS-VERSCHOOR, I.H.Ph. and KOPAL V., An Introduction to Space Law, Third Revised Edition, Kluwer Law International BV, The Netherlands, 2008.