International Law Commission International Law Commission

Last update: September 23, 2016

Analytical Guide to the Work of the International Law Commission

Protection of the environment in relation to armed conflicts

See also: Summary | Texts and Instruments

Mandate

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

None

Reports of the Working Group or Sub-Committee

None

Reports of the Special Rapporteur

  • Consideration of the inclusion of the topic in the programme of work of the Commission and previous consultations in the Commission; the debate in the Sixth Committee of the General Debate in the Sixth Committee of the General Assembly at its sixty-eighth session (2013); and responses to specific issues on which comments would be of particular interest to the Commission; practice of States and international organizations. Discussion on the purpose of the report, as well as of the scope, methodology and outcome of the topic, the use of terms, and the sources and others materials to be consulted. Consideration of the relationship with other topics addressed by the Commission. Consideration of Environmental principles and concepts, human rights and the environment, as well as of the future programme of work.
    • Preliminary report of the Special Rapporteur, Ms. Marie G. Jacobsson (66th session of the ILC (2014))
  • Summary of the debates held in 2014 by the Commission and by the Sixth Committee of the General Assembly during its sixty-ninth session (2014). Summary of responses received from States with regard to the specific issues identified by the Commission as being of particular interest to it. Identification of existing rules of armed conflict directly relevant to the protection of the environment in relation to armed conflicts.
    • Second report of the Special Rapporteur, Ms. Marie G. Jacobsson (67th session of the ILC (2015))
  • Identification of rules applicable in post-conflict situations. Legal aspects related to remnants of war and other environmental challenges. Proposals on post-conflict measures; access to and sharing of information; post-conflict environmental assessments and reviews; preventive measures and the rights of indigenous peoples.
    • Third report of the Special Rapporteur, Ms. Marie G. Jacobsson (68th session of the ILC (2016))

Reports of the Drafting Committee

  • 67th session of the International Law Commission (2015)
    • Text of the draft introductory provisions and draft principles I-(x) to II-5, provisionally adopted by the Drafting Committee at the sixty-seventh session
    • Statement of the Chairman of the Drafting Committee
  • 68th session of the International Law Commission (2016)
    • Text of the draft principles provisionally adopted in 2015 and technically revised and renumbered during the present session by the Drafting Committee
    • Statement of the Chairman of the Drafting Committee
  • Text of the draft principles provisionally adopted during the present session by the Drafting Committee
  • Statement of the Chairman of the Drafting Committee

Comments by Governments

None

Other

None

Reports of the International Law Commission

  • Report of the International Law Commission on the work of its sixty-fifth session, 6 May to 7 June and 8 July to 9 August 2013
    • At its 3171st meeting, on 28 May 2013, the Commission decided to include the topic “Protection of the environment in relation to armed conflicts” in its programme of work and decided to appoint Ms. Marie G. Jacobsson as Special Rapporteur for the topic.
    • At its 3188th meeting, on 30 July 2013, the Special Rapporteur presented to the Commission the following oral report on the informal consultations held on the topic, under her chairmanship, on 6 June and 9 July 2013. At the same meeting, the Commission took note of the report.
    • Discussion in Plenary: 3171st meeting, held on 28 May 2013, and 3188th meeting, held on 30 July 2013.
  • ILC Report, A/68/10, 2013, chap.IX, paras. 130–144
  • See the website of the Sixth Committee of the General Assembly and the topical summary of debate in the Sixth Committee (A/CN.4/666)
  • Report of the International Law Commission on the work of its sixty-sixth session 5 May–6 June and 7 July–8 August 2014
    • The Commission had before it the preliminary report of the Special Rapporteur (A/CN.4/674 and Corr.1), which provided an introductory overview of phase I of the topic, namely the environmental rules and principles applicable to a potential armed conflict (“peacetime obligations”).
    • Discussion in Plenary: 3227th, 3228th, 3229th, 3230th and 3231st meetings (18 to 25 July 2014), and 3242nd meeting (7 August 2014).
  • ILC Report, A/69/10, 2014, chap. XI, paras. 186–222
  • Report of the International Law Commission on the work of its sixty-seventh session 4 May–5 June and 7 July–7 August 2015
    • The Commission had before it the second report of the Special Rapporteur (A/CN.4/685), which it considered at its 3264th to 3269th meetings, from 6 to 10 July and on 14 July 2015.
    • At its 3269th meeting, on 14 July 2015, the Commission referred the preambular paragraphs and draft principles 1 to 5, as contained in the second report of the Special Rapporteur, to the Drafting Committee, with the understanding that the provision on “use of terms” was referred for the purpose of facilitating discussions and to be left pending by the Drafting Committee at that stage.
    • At its 3281st meeting, on 30 July 2015, the Chairman of the Drafting Committee presented the report of the Drafting Committee, containing the draft introductory provisions and draft principles I-(x) to II-5, provisionally adopted by the Drafting Committee at the sixty-seventh session. The Commission took note of the draft introductory provisions and draft principles as presented by the Drafting Committee.
    • Discussion in Plenary: 3264th, 3265th, 3266th, 3267th, 3268th and 3269th meetings (6 to 10 and 14 July 2015), and 3281st meeting (30 July 2015).
  • ILC Report, A/70/10, 2015, chap. IX, paras. 130–170
  • Report of the International Law Commission on the work of its sixty-eighth session, 2 May–10 June and 4 July–12 August 2016
    • The Commission had before it the third report of the Special Rapporteur (A/CN.4/700), which it considered at its 3318th to 3321st and 3324th meetings, from 12 to 15 July and on 20 July 2016.
    • At its 3324th meeting, on 20 July 2016, the Commission referred draft principles I-1, I-3, I-4, III-1 to III-5 and IV-1, as contained in the third report of the Special Rapporteur, to the Drafting Committee.
    • At the same meeting, the Commission also decided to refer back to the Drafting Committee the draft introductory provisions and draft principles contained in the report of the Drafting Committee (A/CN.4/L.870) that the Commission had taken note of during its previous session to address some technical issues in the text involving the use of brackets and some inconsistencies regarding the terminology employed.
    • At its 3337th and 3342nd meetings, on 5 and 9 August 2016 respectively, the Chairperson of the Drafting Committee presented two reports of the Drafting Committee on “Protection of the environment in relation to armed conflicts”. The first contained the draft introductory provisions and draft principles taken note of by the Commission during the sixty-seventh session (2015), which had been renumbered and revised for technical reasons by the Drafting Committee (A/CN.4/L.870/Rev.1). The Commission provisionally adopted draft principles 1, 2, 5 [I-x], 9 [II-1], 10 [II-2], 11 [II-3], 12 [II-4], 13 [II-5] (see section C.1 below). At its 3344th meeting, on 10 August 2016, the Commission adopted the commentaries to the draft principles provisionally adopted at the present session.
    • The second report contained draft principles 4, 6, 7, 8, 14, 15, 16, 17, and 18 provisionally adopted by the Drafting Committee at the present session (A/CN.4/L.876). The Commission took note of the draft principles as presented by the Drafting Committee.
    • Discussion in Plenary: 3318th, 3319th, 3320th, 3321st, 3324th (12 to 15 July and 20 July), 3337th and 3342nd (5 and 9 August 2016) meetings.
  • ILC Report, A/71/10, 2016, chap. X, paras. 139–189

General Assembly Action

  • Resolution 68/112 of 16 December 2013
    • Took note of the decision of the International Law Commission to include the topic in its programme of work.
  • See the website of the Sixth Committee of the General Assembly and the topical summary of debate in the Sixth Committee (A/CN.4/666)

Final Outcome

Work in progress