International Law Commission International Law Commission

Last update: December 4, 2017

Analytical Guide to the Work of the International Law Commission

Nationality including statelessness

See also: Summary | Texts and Instruments

Mandate

Studies undertaken by the Secretariat and Reports of the Secretary-General

  • 2nd session of the International Law Commission
    • Nationality of Married Women: Letter from the Secretary-General to the Chairman of the International Law Commission
  • 3rd session of the International Law Commission
    • Elimination of Statelessness: Note prepared by the Secretariat
  • 4th session of the International Law Commission
    • The problem of Statelessness: Report by the Secretary-General
  • 6th session of the International Law Commission
    • Survey of the problem of multiple nationality prepared by the Secretariat

Reports of the Working Group or Sub-Committee

None

Reports of the Special Rapporteur

  • Report to the International Law Commission with three annexes. The first dealt with nationality in General, and considered past action for the codification of international law in the field of nationality, including an analytical survey of international law on nationality. The second annex contained a draft convention on nationality of married persons drafted to follow closely to the terms proposed by the Commission on the Status of Women and approved by the Economic and Social Council. The third annex contained a working paper on statelessness which considered, past international action for the reduction of statelessness; statelessness "de facto" and "de jure"; the number of stateless persons; the causes of statelessness; an analysis of the problem and the possibilities of its solution; as well as a set of points for discussion.
    • Report of the Special Rapporteur, Mr. Manley O. Hudson (4th session of the ILC (1952))
  • Report on the elimination of statelessness, containing a draft convention on the elimination of future statelessness, and a Draft Convention on the reduction of future statelessness, as well as a synoptic chart of possible sources of statelessness, together with commentaries.
    • Report of the Special Rapporteur, Mr. Roberto Córdova (5th session of the ILC (1953))
  • Prepared a preliminary report on the elimination of present statelessness, including a proposed protocol on the elimination of present statelessness, as well as a draft convention on certain measures for the reduction of present statelessness.
    • Second report of the Special Rapporteur, Mr. Roberto Córdova (5th session of the ILC (1953))
  • Report on the elimination or reduction of statelessness including the texts of a protocol to the "Convention on the Elimination of Future Statelessness", for the elimination of present statelessness; a protocol to the "Convention on the reduction of future statelessness", for the reduction of present statelessness; an alternative Convention on the Elimination of Present Statelessness; as well as an alternative Convention on the Reduction of Present Statelessness, together with commentaries.
    • Third report of the Special Rapporteur, Mr. Roberto Córdova (6th session of the ILC (1954))
  • Report on multiple nationality, including a discussion on the bases of discussion concerning the elimination of future multiple nationality; the bases of discussion concerning the reduction of future multiple nationality; the bases of discussion concerning the elimination of present multiple nationality; and the bases of discussion concerning the reduction of present multiple nationality.
    • Report of the Special Rapporteur, Mr. Roberto Córdova (6th session of the ILC (1954))

Reports of the Drafting Committee

None

Comments by Governments

  • 6th session of the International Law Commission (1954)
    • Comments by Governments on the draft Convention on the Elimination of Future Statelessness and on the draft Convention on the Reduction of Future Statelessness, both prepared by the International Law Commission at its fifth session in 1953

Other

  • 5th session of the International Law Commission (1953)
    • Nationality, including Statelessness: Extracts from Mr. Georges Kaeckenbeeck’s book "The International Experiment of Upper Silesia” (1942) prepared by Ivan S. Kerno, Expert of the International Law Commission
  • Nationality, including Statelessness: National Legislation Concerning Grounds for Deprivation of Nationality — Memorandum prepared by Ivan S. Kerno, Expert of the International Law Commission
  • Nationality, including Statelessness: Analysis of Changes in Nationality Legislation of States since 1930 — Memorandum prepared by Ivan S. Kerno, Expert of the International Law Commission

Reports of the International Law Commission

  • Report of the International Law Commission on the work of its second session, 5 June to 29 July 1950
    • Acknowledgement of receipt of a request from the Economic and Social Council that the International Law Commission undertake the drafting of a convention to embody the principles recommended by the Commission on the Status of Women. The International Law Commission decided that it was appropriate to entertain the proposal, and decided to do so as soon as possible.
    • Discussion in plenary: 71st meeting (19 July 1950)
  • Report of the International Law Commission on the work of its third session, 16 May to 27 July 1951
    • Decision to initiate work on the topic of "nationality, including statelessness". Mr. Manley O. Hudson was appointed Special Rapporteur. Decided also that the request from the Economic and Social Council transmitted to it during its session in 1950 raised a matter that fell within the framework of the topic.
    • Discussion in plenary: 85th meeting (21 May 1951), and 124th meeting (13 July 1951)
  • Report of the International Law Commission on the work of its fourth session, 4 June to 8 August 1952
    • On the question of the draft convention on nationality of married persons, proposed by the Special Rapporteur, the Commission decided that the question of nationality of married women could not but be considered in the context, and as an integral part, of the whole subject of nationality including statelessness. With regard to the working paper on Statelessness submitted by the Special Rapporteur, the Commission took the view that a draft convention on elimination of statelessness and one or more draft conventions on the reduction of future statelessness should be prepared for consideration at its next session. The Commission decided to invite Mr. Ivan Kerno to serve as an individual expert of the Commission charged with work on the question of elimination or reduction of statelessness, under the general guidance of the chairman of the Commission. Following the resignation of the Special Rapporteur, the Commission appointed Mr. Roberto Córdova Special Rapporteur for the topic.
    • Discussion in plenary: 155th, 156th, 157th, 158th, 159th, 160th, 161st, 162nd and 163rd meetings (2 to 14 July 1952), 172nd meeting (25 July 1952), 181st meeting (6 August 1952), and 183rd meeting (8 August 1952)
  • Report of the International Law Commission on the work of its fifth session, 5 June to 14 August 1953
    • On the basis of the report of the Special Rapporteur, the Commission adopted provisionally two conventions, the "Draft Convention on the Elimination of Future Statelessness" and "Draft Convention on the Reduction of Future Statelessness", together with commentaries, for consideration by governments. As both texts were not designed to have retroactive effect, the Special Rapporteur prepared a second report on the question of the elimination of existing statelessness. The Commission requested the Special Rapporteur to devote further study to the matter and to prepare a report for the next session.
    • Discussion in plenary: 211th, 212th, 213th, 214th, 215th, 216th, 217th, 218th, 219th, 220th, 221st, 222nd, 223rd, 224th and 225th meetings (8 to 28 July 1953), and 231st, 232nd, 233rd and 234th meetings (4 to 7 August 1953), and 237th meeting (11 August 1953)

General Assembly and ECOSOC Action

  • ECOSOC resolution 526 B (XVII) of 26 April 1954
    • Endorsing the principles underlying the work of the Commission for the elimination or reduction of statelessness.
 

Final Outcome

International Law Commission (6th session, 1954)

ECOSOC (9th session, 1954)

  • Resolution 526 A (XVII) of 26 April 1954
    • Decision of the Council to convene a conference of plenipotentiaries to review and adopt a protocol relating to the status of stateless persons by which certain provisions of the Convention relating to the Status of Refugees of 28 July 1951 would become applicable to stateless persons.

 

 

General Assembly (9th session, 1954)

  • Resolution 896 (IX) of 4 December 1954
    • The Assembly expressed its desire that an international conference of plenipotentiaries be convened to conclude a convention for the reduction or elimination of future statelessness as soon as at least twenty States had communicated to the Secretary-General their willingness to co-operate in such a conference.2
 

1 The Commission has since taken up the issue in the context of its work on State Succession and its impact on the nationality of natural and legal persons.

2 The United Nations Conference on the Elimination or Reduction of Future Statelessness met at Geneva from 24 March to 18 April 1959, with representatives of thirty-five States participating. At its second part, held at New York, from 15 to 28 August 1961, the Conference adopted the Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness (United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 989, p. 175).