CONVENTION ON THE PREVENTION AND
PUNISHMENT OF THE CRIME OF GENOCIDE
Adopted by resolution 260 (III) A of the United Nations General Assembly on 9 December 1948
INTRODUCTORY NOTE: Although the Genocide Convention does not constitute a part of the law of armed conflicts in a strict sense, it is reprinted below in view of the fact that it is of particular importance in time of war. The Convention was adopted by resolution 260 (III) A of the United Nations General Assembly. By resolution 260 (III) B, the General Assembly invited the International Law Commission to study the desirability of establishing an international judicial organ for the trial of persons charged with genocide or other crimes. By resolution C the General Assembly recommended that parties to the Convention which administer dependent territories should take such measures as are necessary and feasible to enable the provisions of the Convention to be extended to those territories as soon as possible. Resolution A was adopted by 56 votes to none, resolution B by 43 votes to 6, with 3 abstentions, resolution C by 50 votes, with one abstention.
The reservations to the Convention and the objections raised in regard to them by several states induced the General Assembly, by resolution 478 (V) of 16 November 1950, to request the International Court of Justice to give an advisory opinion on the reservations to the Genocide Convention. The International Court gave its advisory opinion on 28 May 1951 (International Court of Justice, Reports of Judgments, Advisory Opinions and Orders, 1951, pp. 15 ff.). In this advisory opinion the Court stated that “the principles unterlying the Convention are principles which are recognized by civilized nations as binding on States, even without any conventional obligation” (p. 23).
ENTRY INTO FORCE: 12 January 1951.
AUTHENTIC TEXTS: Chinese, English, French, Russian, Spanish. The text below is reprinted from UNTS, Vol 78, p. 277.
TEXT PUBLISHED IN: United Nations, Official Records of the Third session of the General Assembly, Part I September 21–December 12, 1948, Resolutions, Paris, Palais de Chaillot, UN Doc. A/810, December, 1948, pp. 174-177 (Engl., see also editions in Chinese, Russian and Spanish); UNTS, Vol. 78, p. 277 (Chinese, Engl., French, Russ., Span.); GBTS, 1970, No. 58, Cmnd. 4421 (Chinese, Engl., French, Russ., Span.); BFSP, Vol. 151, 1948, pp. 682-687 (Engl.); AJ1L, Vol. 45, 1951, Suppl., pp. 7-13 (Engl.); Human Rights — A Compilation of International Instruments, Vol. I (Second Part), New York, United Nations, 1993, pp. 669-673 (Engl.); Droits de l'Homme, Recueil d'instruments internationaux, New York, Nations Unies, 1988, pp. 143-147 (French); Derechos Humanos — Recopilacion de instrumentas internacionales, Nueva York, Naciones Unidas, 1988, pp. 143-147 (Span.); Prava cheloveka — Sbornik mezhdunarodnkyh dokumentov, N'yu-York, OON, 1989, pp. 160-164 (Russ.); Human Rights Documents, Compilation of Documents on Human Rights, Washington, DC, US