The law of international organisations is one of the most popular areas of public international law and is taught in many universities in the UK, Europe and North America. It has been a central subject of research of many worldwide leading scholars of international law. Moreover, international organisations occupy increasing place in international life, manifested through counter-terrorist operations of the UN, expansion of the EU's competence, as well as multiple peace operations in various parts of the world.
Legal issues of international organisations are relevant in multiple contexts. They arise not only in terms of the work of those organisations themselves, but also in relation to such areas of law as EU law, the European Convention on Human Rights and generally before national courts notably including English courts. Questions of how far the competence of international organisations can reach and what the limits on this competence are regularly arise internationally as well as nationally, for instance in the law of ECHR, counter-terrorist measures and immunities. The module will place all pertinent issues of international organisations in context with other pertinent issues of international, European and English law, and will be taught in a comparative perspective of highlighting peculiarities of various organisations regarding the particular questions of applicable law.
Indicative seminar topics:
- Concept and history of international organisations; universal and regional organisations
- Legal personality of international organisations
- Organs of international organisations, decision-making and membership
- Acts of international organisations, their legal effect (international, EU and national legal systems)
- Competence of international organisations: expressly stated and implied powers
- Limits on competence and ultra vires decisions
- Standards of review of illegal decisions (in international, EU and national legal systems) and their legal consequences
- Review of the acts of international organisations (international, EU and English law perspectives)
- Privileges and immunities (international and English legal systems)
- Responsibility of international organisations and its relation to responsibility of member States