International Law Commission International Law Commission

Last update: February 2, 2024

Analytical Guide to the Work of the International Law Commission

Prevention and repression of piracy and armed robbery at sea

See also: Summary | Texts and Instruments

Mandate

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

  • 74th session of the International Law Commission (2023)
    • Memorandum prepared by the Secretariat

Reports of the Working Group or Sub-Committee

None

Reports of the Special Rapporteur

  • Discussion on the historical, socioeconomical and legal aspects of the topic, including an analysis of the international law applicable to piracy and armed robbery at sea, and its shortcomings. Review of the national legislation and judicial practice of States concerning the definition of piracy and the implementation of conventional and customary international law. Discussion of the programme of work. Proposal for three draft articles: on the scope of the draft articles, on the definition of piracy, and on the definition of armed robbery at sea.
    • First report of the Special Rapporteur, Mr. Yacouba Cissé (74th session of the ILC (2023))

Reports of the Drafting Committee

  • 74th session of the International Law Commission (2023)
    • Titles and texts of draft articles 1 to 3 provisionally adopted by the Drafting Committee
    • Statement of the Chair of the Drafting Committee

Comments by Governments

 
 

Other

None

Reports of the International Law Commission

  • Report of the International Law Commission on the work of its seventy-fourth session, 24 April to 2 June and from 3 July to 4 August 2023
    • The Commission had before it the first report of the Special Rapporteur (A/CN.4/758), which discussed the historical, socioeconomical and legal aspects of the topic; reviewed the national legislation and judicial practice of States concerning the definition of piracy and the implementation of conventional and customary international law; and discussed the future programme of work on the topic. The Commission also had before it a memorandum prepared by the Secretariat providing elements in the previous work of the Commission that could be particularly relevant for its future work on the topic and the views expressed by States; as well as information on resolutions adopted by the Security Council and by the General Assembly relevant to the topic (A/CN.4/757).
    • Following the debate in plenary, the Commission decided to refer draft articles 1, 2 and 3, as contained in the first report of the Special Rapporteur, to the Drafting Committee, taking into account the views expressed in the plenary debate.
    • The Commission considered the report of the Drafting Committee (A/CN.4/L.984) on the topic and provisionally adopted draft articles 1 to 3.
  • Discussion in Plenary: 3619th, 3620th, 3621st, 3623rd, 3624th and 3625th (5 to 16 May 2023), 3634th (2 June 2023) and 3649th, 3650th and 3651st (27 and 31 July 2023) meetings.
  • ILC Report, A/78/10, 2023, chap. VI, paras. 50–58

General Assembly Action

  • Resolution 77/103 of 7 December 2022
    • Drew the attention of Governments to the importance for the International Law Commission of having their views on the various aspects of the topics on the agenda of the Commission, in particular on all the specific issues identified in chapter III of its report, regarding, inter alia, Prevention and repression of piracy and armed robbery at sea.
    • Took note of the decision of the International Law Commission to include the topic…“ Prevention and repression of piracy and armed robbery at sea”… in its programme of work.
    • Took note of the request of the Commission to the Secretariat to prepare a memorandum that would be particularly relevant for its future work on the topic “Prevention and repression of piracy and armed robbery at sea”.
  • See the website of the Sixth Committee of the General Assembly and the topical summary of debate in the Sixth Committee (A/CN.4/755)

Final Outcome

Work in progress