Discuss ethics and the development of international law
Topic: Discuss ethics and the development of international law. BY Knockings Name : Ronald Jordan Topic: Discuss ethics and the development of international law. Introduction International law Is defined as body of rules common to all civilized nations, equally binding upon all and impartially governing their mutual intercourse. ” On the other hand, the term ethics, with reference to the Oxford dictionary , simply means Moral principles that govern a person’s behavior or the conducting of an activity. The question then arises how does ethics play a role in international law?
For the purpose f this paper the writer will first give the readers a general conceptualization, where he speaks of the different sources and the development o International law , he then attempts to highlight the Importance of ethics In International law along with his analysis and promptly after conclude. Development of international Law With essence to the more contemporary contract theorist such as Hobbes, Locke and Rousseau, there is need for sovereignty, which Ideally leads to the creation of law because order Is necessary and chaos Inimical to a Just and stable existence.
Law Is that element which binds the members of the community together In their adherence to recognized values and standards. Every society, whether it be large or small, powerful or weak, has created for itself a framework of principles within which to develop. Law consists of a series of rules regulating behavior, and reflecting, to some extent, the ideas and preoccupations of the society within which it functions.
Law Is no stranger to International relations as It also regulates Intercourse between bodies In the International arena -Public International law (more commonly known as international law) covers relations between states In all their myriad forms, from war o satellites, and regulates the operations of the many international institutions. The term international law has been frequently been used in the 21st century but it is important to understand not only has it existed in the past but is due to the past that it has a structure today .
One o the first recorded instances of the use of international law dated back to 21 00 BC, where a solemn treaty known as Mesopotamia was signed between the rulers of Lagans and mama, with Its purpose being the establishment of a defined boundary to be respected by both sides As time continued there were variations of international law, a next instance was the establishment of eternal peace and brotherhood between Renames II of Egypt and the king of the Hitters. This show how capable states were in handling intercourse with each other. Applied to Roman citizens. It was formalistic and hard and reflected the status of a small, unsophisticated society rooted in the soil. Let was totally unable to provide a relevant background for an expanding, developing nation. After this had been recognized as sieving it purpose the , it augmented to encompass a wider array of the states affairs , its end product being the creation and the Jus genetic. This provided amplified rules to govern the relations between foreigners, and between foreigners and citizens.
At the same time the English had established commercial and maritime law named the Elementary, a code of rules covering foreign traders, and this was declared to be of universal application. By the eighteenth century was ideas pertaining to international law this pushed for the evolution of the doctrine of international law. As time elapsed there was a need for things to get more practical , in the nineteenth the Congress of Vienna, which marked the conclusion of the Napoleonic wars, enshrined the new international order which was to be based upon the European balance of power.
With the Napoleonic wars over and balance of power enshrined ,there was a stimulation of a new threats to the now stable international system ; first there was Self-determination that emerged to threaten the multinational empires of central and eastern Europe,; secondly there was nationalism reached its peak in the unifications of Germany and Italy and began to exhibit features such as expansionism and doctrines of racial superiority. In addition to that there was an enormous growth both public and private international institutions.
International law now not only had to adapt to quell these international issues , but now had to also accommodate these different institutions. And it did so , there were a few convention that came into forefend a few conferences that were held in aid of developing international law, such as the series of Geneva Conventions beginning in 1864 dealing with the ‘humidification’s conflict, and the Hogue Conferences of 1899 and 1907 established the Permanent Court of Arbitration and dealt with the treatment of prisoners and the control of warfare.
Numerous other conferences, conventions and congresses emphasized the expansion of the rules of international law and the close network of international relations International has developed so far that today there is an International Court of Justice and established sources of international law , and these are identified in Article 38 (1) of the International Court Of Justice s statute as treaties, custom, and general principles. Ethics in international Law Ethics as it relates to international law can be a very be very tricky, because of the solemn act that there is no generally accepted standard of morality.
Ethics provides us with the tools to determine whether or not we should do a certain action and the extent to which a past action should have been done. But who creates these guidelines? Who are the ones that are benefited? Every state has their own distinct moral guidelines that they follow some of these even completely contrast that of other states . The issue of this is that there is no enforcing body to regulate how individual countries act ,as how the police act as enforcers within a state. As Just law , the closest thing that can be compared to domestic law is a treaty .
According to Starker: In national domestic law, the private citizen has variety of instruments from which to hose for executing some legal act or for attesting a transaction, for example, contracts, conveyances, leases, licenses, settlements, acknowledgments, and so on, each specially adapted to the purpose in hand. In the international sphere, the treaty has to do duty for almost every kind of legal act, or transaction, ranging from a mere bilateral bargain between States to such a fundamental measure as the multilateral constituent instrument of a major international organization (… For example]… The United Nations Charter of 1945. )” The ethical point being taken out of this is that international law , although a major or ether the most important agent in regulating intercourse between states , in reality there no specific body with the authority to punish a state if he does if it does not submit to a next states moral standard. The International Court of Justice , though it’s a very important organ in solving dispute and other issues , if a state does not agree to a trial , that’s the end of that , the next major option are sanctions .
A next point would be, that no one knows a state has done wrong unless another state has claimed injuries . One major principal in international law that , in my opinion that peps , one principal that embraces ethics in international law is Pact Counterparts[this solely expresses that the treaty is binding and it parties should act in good faith] and this is reinforced by Article 26 of The Vienna Convention on Law of treaties. But there are sometimes where the influence of international law can influence a states normal practice.
For instance However treaties can have a wide ranging effect as seen in the Caribbean Court of Justice’s ruling of case of R v Boyce & Joseph . Let may be seen from that case that the State’s mandatory death penalty elated the American Convention on Human Rights to which Barbados was a signatory. By signing on to the treaty each person on death row in Barbados had the option of applying to the American Convention of Human Rights if he or she felt that they had their rights not to be deprived arbitrarily of their lives infringed.
From the before mentioned the writer seeks to show that there was an established moral standard for a specified group of nations, as can be seen, from this ethics is demonstrated from Barbados by complying with the convention they signed on to. There wouldn’t be a need for ethics if everyone acted as they should or followed very rule in international law , as can be seen in the Guyana/Venezuela border dispute.
In this case there although Anglo-Venezuelan Arbitrary Treaty signed on October 3, 1899 which supposedly settled the boundary dispute between the Cooperative Republic of Guyana (then British Guiana) and the Republic of Venezuela , there is still a current dispute over the same issue that was known to be solved over a century ago. This point was merely to establish non compliance to international law , this shows blatant disregard for a treaty that was supposed to have been signed and to be binding and also to be carried out in good faith .