International Law Commission International Law Commission

Last update: May 23, 2017

Texts, Instruments and Final Reports

Under article 20 of its Statute, the Commission is required to prepare drafts in the form of articles and to submit them to the General Assembly together with a commentary containing an adequate presentation of precedents and other relevant data, including treaties, judicial decisions and doctrine; as well as conclusions defining the extent of agreement on each point in the practice of States and in doctrine, and divergencies and disagreements which exist, as well as arguments invoked in favour of one or another solution.

Upon receiving comments from Governments on its draft articles, the Commission prepares a final draft and explanatory report, which it submits with its recommendations to the General Assembly (article 22 of its Statute). The Commission may recommend to the General Assembly: (a) to take no action, the report having already been published; (b) to take note of or adopt the report by resolution; (c) to recommend the draft to Members with a view to the conclusion of a convention; or (d) to convoke a conference to conclude a convention (article 23, paragraph 1).

Since its establishment, the International Law Commission has prepared and submitted a number of final reports, in some cases, together with draft texts, some of which (as indicated) were adopted as international conventions or other instruments.

Select the respective topic from the following list, organized according to the outline adopted in the Report on the Long-Term Programme of Work in 1996 (reproduced in Annex II of the Report of the International Law Commission, A/51/10). Instruments concluded under the auspices of the United Nations on the basis of prior drafts prepared by the Commission are indicated in italics.

Sources of International Law

Topics completed

1.1

Law of treaties

  • Draft articles on the Law of Treaties with commentaries, 1966
  • Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, 1969
1.2

Treaties concluded between States and international organizations or between two or more international organizations

  • Draft articles on the law of treaties between States and international organizations or between international organizations with commentaries, 1982
  • Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties between States and International Organizations or between International Organizations, 1986
1.3

Most-favoured-nation clause (Part One)

  • Draft Articles on Most-Favoured-Nation Clauses with commentaries, 1978
 

Most-favoured-nation clause (Part Two)

  • Summary conclusions, 2015
  • Final report of the Study Group, 2015
1.4

Ways and means for making the evidence of customary international law more readily available

  • Report submitted by the Commission, 1950
1.5

Extended participation in general multilateral treaties concluded under the auspices of the League of Nations

  • Report submitted by the Commission, 1963
1.6

Reservations to multilateral conventions

  • Report submitted by the Commission, 1951
1.7

Review of the multilateral treaty-making process

  • Report of the Working Group on review of the multilateral treaty-making process, endorsed by the Commission and transmitted to the Secretary-General for inclusion in his report, 1979
1.8

Reservations to treaties

  • Guide to Practice on Reservations to Treaties, 2011
1.9

Fragmentation of international law: difficulties arising from the diversification and expansion of international law

  • Conclusions of the work of the Study Group on the Fragmentation of International Law: Difficulties arising from the Diversification and Expansion of International Law, 2006
1.10

Effects of armed conflicts on treaties

  • Draft articles on the effects of armed conflicts on treaties, 2011

Topics under consideration

1.11

Subsequent agreements and subsequent practice in relation to interpretation of treaties

  • In progress
1.12

Provisional application of treaties

  • In progress
1.13

Identification of customary international law

  • In progress
1.14

Jus cogens

  • In progress

Subjects of International Law

Topics discontinued

2.1

Fundamental rights and duties of States

  • Draft Declaration on Rights and Duties of States with commentaries, 1949

Succession of States

Topics commenced and sub-divided

3.1

Succession of States and Governments

Topics completed

3.2

Succession of States in respect to treaties

  • Draft articles on Succession of States in respect of Treaties with commentaries, 1974
  • Vienna Convention on Succession of States in respect of Treaties, 1978
3.3

Succession of States in respect of matters other than treaties

  • Draft articles on Succession of States in respect of State Property, Archives and Debts with commentaries, 1981
  • Vienna Convention on Succession of States in respect of State Property, Archives and Debts, 1983
3.4

Nationality in relation to the succession of States

  • Draft articles on nationality of natural persons in relation to the succession of States with commentaries, 1999

Topics under consideration

3.5

Succession of States in respect of State responsibility

  • In progress

State Jurisdiction/Immunity from Jurisdiction

Topics completed

4.1

Jurisdictional immunities of States and their property

  • Draft Articles on Jurisdictional Immunities of States and Their Property with commentaries, 1991
  • General Assembly resolution 59/38 of 2 December 2004
  • United Nations Convention on Jurisdictional Immunities of States and their property, 2004

Topics under consideration

4.2

Immunity of State officials from foreign criminal jurisdiction

  • In progress

Law of International Organizations

Topics completed

5.1

Representation of States in their relations with international organizations

  • Draft articles on the Representation of States in their Relations with International Organizations with commentaries, 1971
  • Vienna Convention on the Representation of States in Their Relations with International Organizations of a Universal Character, 1975

See also: Responsibility of international organizations

Topics discontinued

5.2

Status, privileges and immunities of international organizations, their officials, experts, etc.

  • None

Position of the Individual in International Law

Topics completed

6.1

Nationality including statelessness

  • Draft Convention on the Elimination of Future Statelessness, 1954
  • Draft Convention on the Reduction of Future Statelessness, 1954
  • Report on Present Statelessness, 1954
  • Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness, 1961
6.3

Protection of persons in the event of disasters

  • Draft articles on the Protection of persons in the event of disasters, 2016

See also: Expulsion of aliens

Topics not pursued further

6.2

Right of asylum

  • None

International Criminal Law

Topics completed

7.1

Formulation of the Nürnberg Principles

  • Principles of International Law Recognized in the Charter of the Nürnberg Tribunal and in the Judgment of the Tribunal with commentaries, 1950
7.2

Question of international criminal jurisdiction

  • None
7.3

Draft code of offences against the peace and security of mankind (Part I)

  • Draft Code of Offences against the Peace and Security of Mankind with commentaries, 1954
7.4

Draft code of crimes against the peace and security of mankind (Part II) — including the draft statute for an international criminal court

  • Draft Statute for an International Criminal Court with commentaries, 1994
    • Annex. Crimes pursuant to treaties (see art.20, subpara. (e)), 1994
    • Appendix I. Possible Clauses of a Treaty to Accompany the Draft Statute, 1994
    • Appendix II. Relevant Treaty Provisions Mentioned in the Annex (see art. 20, subpara. (e)), 1994
    • Appendix III. Outline of Possible Ways whereby a Permanent International Criminal Court may Enter into Relationship with the United Nations, 1994
  • Draft Code of Crimes against the Peace and Security of Mankind with commentaries, 1996
  • Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, 1998
7.6

Obligation to extradite or prosecute (aut dedere aut judicare)

  • Final Report of the Working Group, 2014

Topics commenced and incorporated elsewhere

7.5

Question of defining aggression

Topics under consideration

7.7

Crimes against humanity

  • In progress

See also: Immunity of State officials from foreign criminal jurisdiction

Law of International Spaces

Topics completed

8.1 & 8.2

Law of the sea — régime of the high seas and régime of the territorial sea

  • Articles concerning the Law of the Sea with commentaries, 1956
  • Convention on the Territorial Sea and the Contiguous Zone, 1958
  • Convention on the High Seas, 1958
  • Convention on Fishing and Conservation of the Living Resources of the High Seas, 1958
  • Convention on the Continental Shelf, 1958
  • Optional Protocol of Signature concerning the Compulsory Settlement of Disputes, 1958
8.3

Law of the non-navigational uses of international watercourses

  • Draft articles on the law of the non-navigational uses of international watercourses with commentaries and resolution on transboundary confined groundwater, 1994
  • Resolution on Confined Transboundary Groundwater, 1994
  • Convention on the Law of the Non-navigational Uses of International Watercourses, 1997
8.5

Shared natural resources (Law of Transboundary Aquifers)

  • Draft articles on the law of transboundary aquifers, 2008

Topics discontinued

8.4

Juridical régime of historic waters, including historic bays

  • None
8.6

Shared natural resources (oil and gas)

  • None

Topics under consideration

8.7

Protection of the environment in relation to armed conflicts

  • In progress
8.8

Protection of the atmosphere

  • In progress

Law of International Relations

Topics commenced and sub-divided

9.

International liability for injurious consequences arising out of acts not prohibited by international law

Topics completed

9.1

Diplomatic intercourse and immunities

  • Draft Articles on Diplomatic Intercourse and Immunities with commentaries, 1958
  • Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, 1961
  • Optional Protocol concerning Acquisition of Nationality, 1961
  • Optional Protocol concerning the Compulsory Settlement of Disputes, 1961
9.2

Consular intercourse and immunities

  • Draft Articles on Consular Relations with commentaries, 1961
  • Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, 1963
  • Optional Protocol concerning Acquisition of Nationality, 1963
  • Optional Protocol concerning the Compulsory Settlement of Disputes, 1963
9.3

Special missions

  • Draft Articles on Special Missions with commentaries, 1967
  • Convention on Special Missions, 1969
  • Optional Protocol concerning the Compulsory Settlement of Disputes, 1969
9.4

Question of the protection and inviolability of diplomatic agents and other persons entitled to special protection under international law

  • Draft articles on the prevention and punishment of crimes against diplomatic agents and other internationally protected persons with commentaries, 1972
  • General Assembly resolution 3166 (XXVIII) of 14 December 1973
  • Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Crimes against Internationally Protected Persons, including Diplomatic Agents, 1973
9.5

Status of the diplomatic courier and the diplomatic bag not accompanied by the diplomatic courier

  • Draft Articles on the Status of the Diplomatic Courier and the Diplomatic Bag Not Accompanied by Diplomatic Courier with commentaries, 1989
  • Draft Optional Protocol One on the Status of the Courier and the Bag of Special Missions with commentaries, 1989
  • Draft Optional Protocol Two on the Status of the Courier and the Bag of International Organizations of a Universal Character with commentaries, 1989
9.6

State responsibility

  • Draft Articles on Responsibility of States for Internationally Wrongful Acts with commentaries, 2001
9.7

International liability for injurious consequences arising out of acts not prohibited by international law (prevention of transboundary damage from hazardous activities)

  • Draft Articles on Prevention of Transboundary Harm from Hazardous Activities with commentaries, 2001
9.8

Diplomatic protection

  • Draft Articles on Diplomatic Protection, 2006
9.9

Unilateral acts of States

  • Guiding Principles applicable to unilateral declarations of States capable of creating legal obligations, 2006
9.10

International liability for injurious consequences arising out of acts not prohibited by international law (international liability in case of loss from transboundary harm arising out of hazardous activities)

  • Draft principles on the allocation of loss in the case of transboundary harm arising out of hazardous activities, 2006
9.11

Responsibility of international organizations

  • Draft articles on the responsibility of international organizations, 2011
9.12

Expulsion of aliens

  • Draft articles on the expulsion of aliens, 2014

See also: Succession of States in respect of State responsibility

Settlement of Disputes

Topics completed

10.1

Arbitral procedure

  • Model Rules on Arbitral Procedure with a general commentary, 1958