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October 2018

Inter-American Juridical Committee member participates in the Informal Meeting of Legal Advisers at the United Nations

Inter-American Juridical Committee member participates in the Informal Meeting of Legal Advisers at the United Nations

On Tuesday, October 23, 2018, Professor Duncan Hollis took part in a panel titled “Memoranda of Understanding in light of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties,” organized by the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs within the framework of the Informal Meeting of Legal Advisers at the UNGA in New York City, NY, United States of America.

Professor Hollis is a member of the Inter-American Juridical Committee and serves as the Rapporteur on the issue of “Binding and Non-binding Agreements.” In that capacity he has solicited OAS Member States views on three different categories of international agreements: treaties, political commitments and contracts. He is currently drafting an OAS Guide to International Agreements.

At the UNGA meeting, Professor Hollis offered a short presentation "Differentiating Among International Agreements: A View from the OAS". In it, he described the Committee’s work as well as his tentative conclusions and recommendations on how to identify and differentiate among treaties, political commitments and contracts as well as what legal effects, if any, accompanied each agreement type.

In addition to Professor Hollis, the panel was composed of (i) Professor Jan Klabbers, from the University of Helsinki in Finland, who gave a talk entitled, “A Skeptical Attitude towards MOUs as Separate and Non-legal Phenomena,” and (ii) Dr. Bae Jongin, South Korea's Foreign Ministry Legal Adviser, who shared some of the practical difficulties and policy considerations regarding MoUs from the perspective of a legal advisor. 

» The most recent version of Professor Hollis’ report, including a first draft of the OAS Guide to International Agreements may be consulted on this link.

The Inter-American Juridical Committee is an OAS advisory body on juridical matters. Its purpose is to promote the progressive development and codification of international law and to study the possibility of attaining uniformity in the legislation of the countries of the Hemisphere.

For further information on this matter, please contact the Department of International Law of the OAS – Technical Secretariat of the Inter-American Juridical Committee +1 202 370 0743. 

» To obtain more information about the Committee, click on this link

» For additional information about the Department, please visit our Website


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