The Responsibility of International Organizations and the International Law Commission

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The Responsibility of International Organizations and the International
Law Commission: A Conversation between Professors Georg Nolte,
member of the International Law Commission, and José E. Alvarez, NYU

The responsibility of international organizations has been an important
concern of the international community for some years. In 2011, the
International Law Commission adopted the “Draft Articles on Responsibility of International Organizations.” These articles will be debated in the UN General Assembly’s Sixth Committee. In addition, cases before the European Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights (in particular Kadi/Behrami/Al-Skeini/Al-Jedda) have raised significant questions about the human rights obligations of the United Nations as well as member states cooperating with UN actions. Such questions have arisen in the course of implementing UN sanctions or undertaking UN peacekeeping operations.

Have the ILC and international judges asked the right questions and reached the right answers with respect to allocating responsibility on the UN? What is the International Law Commission’s role in resolving such issues? Prof. Georg Nolte, member of the International Law Commission, and Prof. J.E. Alvarez, the Herbert and Rose Rubin Professor of Law at NYU School of Law, addressed these issues in the form of a conversation at New York University School of Law.

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