An Introduction to International Institutional Law

By Jan Klabbers | Go to book overview

2
The rise of international organizations

Introduction

Traditionally, public international law has long been thought of as largely a law of co-existence:1 rules of international law were created, either by custom or by bilateral treaty, for the purpose of delimiting spheres of influence between states, but not much else. For the better part, international law regulated the practical aspects of sovereign states living together on Planet Earth, dealing with such issues as the jurisdiction of states, access to each other’s courts, delimitation of maritime zones, and other similar issues.

To the extent that cooperation took place at all, it was of the sort which follows naturally from this co-existential character of the law. Thus, if the spheres of jurisdiction of states have been strictly delimited, it follows that rules and procedures are required, for example, to make possible the extradition of criminals captured abroad, or the enforcement of contracts concluded with foreign partners.2

Although embryonic forms of international organization have been present throughout recorded history, for instance in the form of the socalled amphictyonic councils of ancient Greece, the late-medieval Hanseatic League3 or such precursors as the Swiss Confederation and the United Provinces of the Netherlands,4 it was not until the nineteenth century that

1 As a theoretical concern, this conception owes much to the work of Wolfgang Friedmann, especially his The Changing Structure of International Law (New York, 1964).

2 A useful introduction to the history of international law is Arthur Nussbaum, A Concise History of the Law of Nations (rev. edn, New York, 1954).

3 Compare Gerard J. Mangone, A Short History of International Organizations (New York, 1954), p. 19. More on the Hanseatic league and how it compares to the sovereign state can be found in Hendrik Spruyt, The Sovereign State and its Competitors (Princeton, 1994).

4 These are mentioned as forerunners in Sir Frederick Pollock, League of Nations (2nd edn, London, 1922), p. 4.

-16-

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An Introduction to International Institutional Law
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page v
  • Contents vii
  • Preface xiii
  • Acknowledgements xvi
  • Table of Cases xix
  • A Note on Documentation xxxiii
  • Abbreviations xxxv
  • 1 - Introduction 1
  • 2 - The Rise of International Organizations 16
  • 3 - The Legal Position of International Organizations 42
  • 4 - The Foundations of Powers of Organizations 60
  • 5 - International Organizations and the Law of Treaties 82
  • 6 - Issues of Membership 104
  • 7 - Financing 128
  • 8 - Privileges and Immunities 146
  • 9 - Institutional Structures 169
  • 10 - Legal Instruments 197
  • 11 - Decision-Making and Judicial Review 226
  • 12 - Dispute Settlement 253
  • 13 - Treaty-Making by International Organizations 278
  • 14 - Issues of Responsibility 300
  • 15 - Dissolution and Succession 320
  • 16 - Concluding Remarks- Re-Appraising International Organizations 334
  • Bibliography 345
  • Index 373
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