International Law- definition

What is International Law

International law defines the legal responsibilities of States in their conduct with each other, and their treatment of individuals within State boundaries. International law encompasses a wide range of issues of international concern, such as-

  1. human rights,
  2. disarmament,
  3. international crime,
  4. refugees,
  5. migration,
  6. problems of nationality,
  7. the treatment of prisoners,
  8. the use of force,
  9. and the conduct of war,

among others. It also regulates the global commons, such as-

  1. the environment and sustainable development,
  2. international waters,
  3. outer space,
  4. global communications and
  5. world trade.

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”.

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.

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).


Syllabus and scope of International Law

  1. Sources of International Law
  2. Subjects of International Law
  3. Succession of States
  4. State Jurisdiction/Immunity from Jurisdiction
  5. Law of International Organizations
  6. Position of the Individual in International Law
  7. International Criminal Law
  8. Law of International Spaces
  9. Law of International Relations
  10. Settlement of Disputes