To save this undefined to your undefined account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your undefined account.
Find out more about saving content to .
To save this article to your Kindle, first ensure email@example.com is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about saving to your Kindle.
Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
Intellectual clashes over the nature of international law have been raging throughout the traceable history of the discipline. Naturalists, positivists, idealists, pragmatists, formalists, realists, and so forth, have striven to put forward and defend credible paradigms of international legal order. The common characteristic of each new wave of criticism has been its unsettling disposition. It arrived stridently with questions and doubts, often seeking reform and often reconceptualization and transcendence. A second common characteristic, notably in the post-enlightenment period, has been the marginalized position of the debate on the merit of each new wave, within and outside legal academia. Indeed, debate over unsettling questions seems to have been exempted from the habitual professional responsibilities of the overwhelming majority of international lawyers. Existential anxieties of this sort have been relinquished to that class of academics usually referred to as jurisprudes or legal theorists. ‘Practicing’ international lawyers, so it is often argued, need not concern themselves with ‘theory’. Their mission is to provide tangible answers to practical problems and, for this task, ‘theoretical’ debate is irrelevant: its outcome is indeterminate, abstract, and, thus, of limited usability. In some cases ‘theoretical’ even becomes a pejorative term, synonymous with counter productive or parasitic.
The UN system requires far-reaching changes so as to achieve the objectives of the UN Charter (e.g. with regard to human rights and maintenance of peace) more effectively. European integration law suggests that ‘international constitutionalism’ offers the most effective approach for strengthening the rule of law and peaceful cooperation among democracies. Section 2 outlines basic principles for a constitutional theory of international law. Section 3 discusses the difficulties of ‘constitutionalizing’ the state-centered and power-oriented concepts of the UN Charter. Section 4 explains why the successful Uruguay Round strategy for replacing the old GATT 1947 by the new World Trade Organization (WTO) – notably the ‘package deal negotiations’, the incorporation of other worldwide treaties into WTO law and the mandatory WTO dispute settlement and enforcement systems – offer important lessons for the needed reforms of the UN Charter.
Does the International Court of Justice have the power to indicate legally binding provisional measures? On the basis of the provisions of the UN Charter and the Statute of the International Court of Justice, it seems unlikely that the Court is bestowed with such a power. An alternative argument, which regards interim protection as a general principle of law, thus giving it binding force, is also not without difficulties. The situation seems to be clearer, however, when states declare in a treaty their intention to be bound by the provisional measures indicated by the Court. The argument considering provisional measures as a ‘moral obligation’ will be examined as well.
On 1 July 1997 the People's Republic of China recovered Hong Kong in accordance with the Sino-British Joint Declaration of 19 December 1984. On the same day, China announced the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) formally established and functioning as of 1 July 1997.
On 11 April 1997, the text of the Convention on the Law of the Non-Navigational Uses of International Watercourses was presented by the Working Group of the Whole (WG) of the United Nations General Assembly Sixth Committee to the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). This Convention is based on the 1994 Draft Articles on the same topic prepared by the International Law Commission (ILC). These Draft Articles were approved on second reading by the ILC during its 46th session in 1994 and subsequently submitted to the 49th session of the UNGA in 1994 for consideration by states. By its Resolution 49/52, the UNGA invited states to present written submissions to comment on the Draft Articles and at the same time it proposed that a working group on the whole of the UNGA Sixth Committee be established to convene during the 51st session of UNGA (September-December 1996) to elaborate the text for a convention. During its first session, the WG did not manage to accomplish this task. The final text submitted to the UNGA on 11 April 1997 was the result of the second session of the WG which had deliberated during the period from 24 March to 4 April 1997.
Traditionally, most arbitration acts provided that an arbitrator could be challenged on the same grounds as those on which judges could be challenged. Thus, arbitrators could be challenged on specific grounds, such as a family relationship with one of the parties or animosity towards one of the parties. The more modern approach is to provide for an open norm for the grounds on which challenges can be brought. This approach finds its origin in the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules adopted in 1976. It provides that: “[a]n arbitrator may be challenged only if circumstances exist that give rise to the justifiable doubts as to his impartiality or independence”. This standard was received in many other arbitration acts and rules. The standard nowadays being more or less uniform, its interpretation and application are far from easy.
HAGUE INTERNATIONAL TRIBUNALS: International Court of Justice
The parties jointly notified the Court on 2 July 1993 of a Special Agreement by which they submitted to it for adjudication the differences between them concerning the Gabčíkovo-Nagymaros Project. By an Order of 14 July 1993, the Court fixed 2 May 1994 as the time-limit for the filing by each of the parties of a Memorial and 5 December 1994 for the filing by each of the parties of a Counter-Memorial. By Order of 20 December 1994, the President of the Court fixed 20 June 1995 as the time-limit for the filing of a Reply by each of the Parties.
The World Health Organization (WHO) had, among other things, been examining and deliberating the hazardous effects to health by the use of nuclear weapons. These discussions culminated in a resolution which requested an advisory opinion from the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on the legality of the use of nuclear weapons in the following terms:
[i]n view of the health and environmental effects, would the use of nuclear weapons by a Stare in war or other armed conflict be a breach of its obligations under international law including the WHO Constitution?
The case-law of the International Court of Justice (Court) is replete with arguments about whether the Court has jurisdiction to entertain the particular dispute (or request for advisory opinion) with which the Court is faced. These arguments are framed at one level as matters of interpretation of the relevant instruments. But they typically play out as well a multiplicity of variations on the overlapping themes of sovereignty (the extent to which states have been prepared to concede decision-making to third-party settlement mechanisms) and justiciability (the extent to which they will accept that an issue may be governed by ‘law’ and thus be susceptible to resolution by judicial actors).
HAGUE INTERNATIONAL TRIBUNALS: International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia
Established in 1993, the International Criminal Tribunal for the Prosecution of Persons Responsible for Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law Committed in the Territory of the Former Yugoslavia Since 1991 (International Tribunal) has steadily become more active in its quest to fulfil its mandate, moving from the establishment stage to the working stage most notably over the past two years. The trial of Dusko Tadić, the first full scale trial before the International Tribunal, was held from 7 May 1996 through 28 November 1996 and the final judgment was rendered on 7 May 1997. Pursuant to a guilty plea, the accused Drazen Erdemović was sentenced on 29 November 1996. In addition, two trials, one of which is based on the Celebići indictment against four accused, Esad Landžo, Zenjil Delalić, Zdravko Mucić, and Hazim Delić, and began on 10 March 1997, and one against Tihomir Blaskić, are currently underway. The motions submitted and arguments that have been and will be made during these proceedings have, and will continue to, force the trial and appellate chambers of the International Tribunal to apply and interpret for the first time many of the International Tribunal's Rules of Procedure and Evidence (Rules). One of the issues that is no doubt relevant for the judges of the trial chambers as they deliberate the final judgments in these cases is the modicum of proof necessary to find the accused guilty of the infractions of international humanitarian law charged in the relevant indictment.