International Law Commission International Law Commission

International Law Commission, July 2018. Photo: Antoine Tardy.
International Law Commission, July 2018.
The International Law Commission was established by the General Assembly, in 1947, to undertake the mandate of the Assembly, under article 13 (1) (a) of the Charter of the United Nations to "initiate studies and make recommendations for the purpose of ... encouraging the progressive development of international law and its codification".

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic, the General Assembly, on 12 August 2020, decided to postpone the seventy-second session of the ILC to 2021. Subsequently, the General Assembly, in resolution 75/135 of 15 December 2020, decided that the International Law Commission will hold its seventy-second session at the United Nations Office at Geneva from 26 April to 4 June and from 5 July to 6 August 2021 (11 weeks).

#ILC_2021

Latest publications: 70 years of the International Law Commission

70 years of the International Law Commission — Drawing a balance for the future 70 years of the International Law Commission — Drawing a balance for the future
  • Seventy Years of the International Law Commission photo exhibit, prepared by the Codification Division, accompanying the events marking the seventieth anniversary of the ILC in New York and Geneva. The exhibit was subsequently also displayed in The Hague, Bangkok and Washington, D.C., during 2018 and 2019.

Current programme of work

The following topics are on the programme of work of the Commission:

* Not scheduled to be considered at the seventy-second session in 2021.

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Recent Developments

Succession of States & responsibility

28 July 2021 The Chair of the Drafting Committee presented the report of the Drafting Committee on the topic (A/CN.4/L.954). The Commission took note of the report.

Immunity of State officials

26 July 2021 The Chair of the Drafting Committee presented the second report of the Drafting Committee on the topic (A/CN.4/L.953/Add.1). The Commission considered the Report of the Drafting Committee and adopted the text and title of draft article 12.

Provisional application of treaties

26 July 2021 The Chair of the Drafting Committee presented the revised report of the Drafting Committee on the topic (A/CN.4/L.952/Rev.1). The Commission considered the report of the Drafting Committee and adopted on second reading the texts and titles of the draft guidelines 1 to 12 and of the draft annex. The Commission adopted the “Guide to Provisional Application of Treaties” as a whole on second reading.

Succession of States & responsibility

26 July 2021 The document containing texts of draft articles 10, 10 bis and 11 provisionally adopted by the Drafting Committee at the 72nd session, has been issued (A/CN.4/L.954).

Visit of the ICJ President via Zoom

22 July 2021 The President of the International Court of Justice, Judge Joan E. Donoghue, addressed the Commission via Zoom. An exchange of views followed.

Special memorial meeting

22 July 2021 The Commission held a special memorial meeting in memory of Judge James Crawford.

General principles of law

21 July 2021 The Special Rapporteur, Mr. Marcelo Vázquez-Bermúdez, summed up the debate of his second report on the topic (A/CN.4/741Corr.1). The Commission decided to refer draft conclusions 4 to 9 to the Drafting Committee.

Zoom meeting with the USG for Legal Affairs and UN Legal Counsel

14 July 2021 The Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs and United Nations Legal Counsel, Mr. Miguel de Serpa Soares, made a statement via Zoom informing the Commission of the activities of the Office of Legal Affairs and recent developments of international law in the context of the United Nations. An exchange of views followed.

General principles of law

12 July 2021 The Special Rapporteur, Mr. Marcelo Vázquez-Bermúdez, introduced his second report on “General principles of law” (A/CN.4/741Corr.1).

Succession of States & responsibility

12 July 2021 The Special Rapporteur, Mr. Pavel Šturma, summed up the debate of his fourth report on the topic (A/CN.4/743). The Commission decided to refer draft articles 17 bis, 16, 17, 18 and 19 on the topic to the Drafting Committee.

Succession of States & responsibility

6 July 2021 The Commission began its consideration of the Special Rapporteur’s fourth report on the topic (A/CN.4/743).

Succession of States & responsibility

5 July 2021 The Special Rapporteur, Mr. Pavel Šturma, introduced his fourth report on the topic (A/CN.4/743).

Election of the members of the ILC

16 June 2021 Note by the Secretary-General concerning the nominations received for the election of the ILC, has been issued (A/76/82).

72nd Session of the ILC

4 June 2021 The Commission concluded the first part of its seventy-second session. The second part will be held from 5 July to 6 August 2021.