International Law Commission International Law Commission

Last update: July 16, 2021

2021 election links

Membership

2021 Election of the International Law Commission

The nomination period for the 2021 election of the International Law Commission closed on 1 June 2021.

The term of office of the present 34 members of the International Law Commission will expire at the end of 2022. The election of the members of the Commission for a five-year term beginning on 1 January 2023 will take place at the seventy-sixth session of the General Assembly (approx. November 2021).

The General Assembly, in paragraph 3 of resolution 36/39 of 18 November 1981, decided that the 34 members of the International Law Commission shall be elected according to the following pattern:

(a) Eight nationals from African States;

(b) Seven nationals from Asia-Pacific States;

(c) Three nationals from Eastern European States;

(d) Six nationals from Latin American and Caribbean States;

(e) Eight nationals from Western European and other States;

(f) One national from African States or Eastern European States in rotation, with the seat being allocated to a national of an African State in the first election held after the adoption of the resolution 36/39;

(g) One national from Asia-Pacific States or Latin American and Caribbean States in rotation, with the seat being allocated to a national of an Asia-Pacific State in the first election held after the adoption of the resolution 36/39.

The rotational seat referred to in subparagraph (f) above was allocated to a national of an Eastern European State at the election held in 2016. Accordingly, the seat shall be allocated to a national of an African State at the forthcoming election.

The rotational seat referred to in subparagraph (g) above was allocated to a national of a Latin American and Caribbean State at the election held in 2016. Accordingly, the seat shall be allocated to a national of an Asia-Pacific State at the forthcoming election. 

Thus, the allocation of seats on the Commission for the five-year term beginning on 1 January 2023 will be as follows:

The Statute of the International Law Commission provides in article 2 that the International Law Commission shall consist of 34 members who shall be persons of recognized competence in international law, with no two members being nationals of the same State and that in case of dual nationality a candidate shall be deemed to be a national of the State in which he ordinarily exercises civil and political rights.

The members of the Commission are to be elected by the General Assembly from a list of candidates nominated by the Governments of States Members of the United Nations. Each State Member of the United Nations may nominate not more than four candidates, of whom two may be nationals of the nominating State and two nationals of other States (articles 3, 4 and 7). Members of the Commission shall be elected for five years and shall be eligible for re-election (article 10).

It is to be recalled that the General Assembly, in resolution 73/341 of 12 September 2019, encouraged Member States to continue nominating “women candidates…for the subsidiary organs of the General Assembly in seeking to promote gender balance”.

The nomination period for the forthcoming election was opened by means of a Note Verbale, dated 23 October 2020, transmitted on behalf of the Secretary-General to all Permanent Representatives of Member States to the United Nations.

The Statute provides in article 5 that the names of the candidates shall be submitted in writing by Governments to the Secretary-General by the first of June of the year in which an election is held, provided that a Government may in exceptional circumstances substitute for a candidate whom it has nominated before the first of June another candidate whom it shall name not later than 30 days before the opening of the General Assembly.

The Secretary-General is required by articles 6 and 7 of the Statute to communicate the names submitted as soon as possible to Governments of States Members of the United Nations, as well as any statements of qualifications of candidates that may have been submitted by the nominating Governments, and to submit to the General Assembly for the purposes of the election a list of the candidates nominated.

By rule 92 of the rules of procedure of the General Assembly, the election will be held by secret ballot.

According to article 9 of the Statute of the Commission, those candidates, up to the maximum number prescribed for each regional group, who obtain the greatest number of votes and at least a majority of the votes of the States Members present and voting shall be elected. If the maximum number of persons prescribed for each regional group is not elected on the first ballot, there shall be additional ballots to fill the remaining places in accordance with the appropriate provisions of rule 94 of the rules of procedure of the General Assembly.

The following is a list of nominations received from States, which is being made available, in accordance with article 6 of the Statute, for information and the convenience of delegations only.

The nominations submitted by Governments to the Secretary-General by 1 June 2021, in reply to his request, are, pursuant to article 6 of the Statute, set out below (see also A/76/82 + Add.1):

(Nominations are reflected below in alphabetical order by regional group, with hyperlinks to the statements of qualifications received for each candidate)

African States (9 seats)

Candidates (Nationality) Nominated by
Mr. Cissé, Yacouba (Côte d’Ivoire) Côte d’Ivoire
Mr. Fall, Aly (Mauritania) Mauritania
Mr. Fathalla, Ahmed Amin (Egypt) Egypt
Mr. Jalloh, Charles C. (Sierra Leone) Sierra Leone, Chile, New Zealand
Mr. Kalaluka, Likando (Zambia) Zambia
Mr. Laraba, Ahmed (Algeria) Algeria
Mr. Mashamba, Clement Julius (United Republic of Tanzania) United Republic of Tanzania
Mr. Mingashang, Ivon (Democratic Republic of the Congo) Democratic Republic of the Congo
Ms. Okowa, Phoebe (Kenya) Kenya, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Mr. Ouazzani Chahdi, Hassan (Morocco) Morocco
Mr. Sall, Alioune (Senegal) Senegal
Mr. Savadogo, Louis (Burkina Faso) Burkina Faso
Mr. Tungo, Muaz Ahmed Mohamed (Sudan) Sudan

*The Government of Mauritania withdrew the candidature of Mr. Mohamed Yeslem Mohamed Lemine (on 29 June 2021).

Asia-Pacific States (8 seats)

Candidates (Nationality) Nominated by
Mr. Asada, Masahiko (Japan) Japan, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Mr. Huang, Huikang (China) China
Mr. Lee, Keun-Gwan (Republic of Korea) Republic of Korea
Ms. Mangklatanakul, Vilawan (Thailand) Thailand
Mr. Mavroyiannis, Andreas D. (Cyprus) Cyprus
Mr. Nguyen, Hong Thao (Viet Nam) Viet Nam
Mr. Patel, Bimal N. (India) India
Mr. Pieris, Mohan (Sri Lanka) Sri Lanka
Mr. Roque, Herminio Harry L. (Philippines) Philippines
Mr. Tsend, Munkh-Orgil (Mongolia) Mongolia
Mr. Ziadé, Nassib G. (Lebanon) Lebanon, Bahrain

*The Government of Uzbekistan withdrew the candidature of Mr. Mirvokhid Azimov (on 16 April 2021).

Eastern European States (3 seats)

Candidates (Nationality) Nominated by
Mr. Aurescu, Bogdan (Romania) Romania
Mr. Kocharyan, Vigen (Armenia) Armenia
Mr. Paparinskis, Mārtinš (Latvia) Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania
Mr. Šturma, Pavel (Czech Republic) Czech Republic
Ms. Varga, Réka (Hungary) Hungary
Mr. Zagaynov, Evgeny (Russian Federation) Russian Federation
Mr. Zarbiyev, Fuad (Azerbaijan) Azerbaijan

Latin American and Caribbean States (6 seats)

Candidates (Nationality) Nominated by
Mr. Abreu Bonilla, Sergio (Uruguay) Uruguay
Mr. Argüello Gómez, Carlos José (Nicaragua) Nicaragua
Mr. Galindo, George Rodrigo Bandeira (Brazil) Brazil
Mr. Grossman Guiloff, Claudio (Chile) Chile, Sierra Leone
Mr. Oyarzábal, Mario (Argentina) Argentina
Mr. Ruda Santolaria, Juan José (Peru) Peru
Mr. Vázquez-Bermúdez, Marcelo (Ecuador) Ecuador

Western European and other States (8 seats)

Candidates (Nationality) Nominated by
Mr. Akande, Dapo (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland) United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Nigeria, Slovenia, Kenya, Japan
Ms. Aswad, Evelyn (United States of America) United States of America
Mr. Becker, Tal (Israel) Israel
Ms. Escobar Hernández, Concepción (Spain) Spain
Mr. Fife, Rolf Einar (Norway) Norway, Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Iceland
Mr. Forteau, Mathias (France) France
Ms. Galvão Teles, Patrícia (Portugal) Portugal
Mr. Nesi, Giuseppe (Italy) Italy
Ms. Oral, Nilüfer (Turkey) Turkey
Mr. Reinisch, August (Austria) Austria
Ms. Ridings, Penelope (New Zealand) New Zealand, Australia, Canada, Sierra Leone