The AALCO Secretariat organized its second webinar on a topic on the agenda of the International Law Commission titled “General Principles of Law and AALCO Member States,” which took place on April 6, 2023. The webinar saw a stellar array of panellists speaking on diverse aspects of the topic to an audience of over 50 participants from the Member States and academia.
In his brief introductory speech, H.E. Dr. Kamalinne Pinitpuvadol, Secretary-General of AALCO, highlighted the significance of the work of the International Law Commission and the mandate of AALCO as per Article 1 of its Statutes to consider and deliberate on issues related to the work of the International Law Commission. Ms. Uma Sekhar, Additional Secretary (L&T Division), Ministry of External Affairs of the Republic of India, and the President of the 60th Annual Session of AALCO, emphasized the significance of the ILC’s work on the topic and its application in diverse legal regimes. She also expressed India's commitment to promoting dialogue and cooperation among AALCO Member States on this subject to foster unity and harmony in international legal matters, in her special remarks.
Deputy Secretary-General of AALCO, Dr. Ali Garshasbi, moderated two sessions with six distinguished speakers who presented legal aspects of the topic. In the first session titled “Overview of the Work of the ILC on ‘General Principles of Law’ and the Way Forward,” Amb. Marcelo Vázquez-Bermúdez, member of the International Law Commission and the Special Rapporteur of the topic “General Principles of Law,” elaborated on the provisions of the draft conclusions adopted by the ILC. Prof. Bimal Patel, Member of the International Law Commission and Dr. Pouria Askary, Associate Professor of international law from the Allameh Tabataba’ei University of Iran, in their presentations, provided a critical analysis of the work of the ILC on this topic. They discussed a few granular aspects of the draft conclusions and presented their suggestions and recommendations for further consideration.
The second panel— “General Principles of Law in Specific Branches of International Law,” had Professor Mads Andenas, Dr. Aniruddha Rajput, and Dr. Fabián Raimondo as panelists. Professor Mads Andenas, Professor at the Faculty of Law at the University of Oslo and the former Chair-Rapporteur of the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, explained the intricacies associated with general principles of law in human rights law at national and international levels. Dr. Aniruddha Rajput, former Member of the International Law Commission, discussed certain gaps in the ILC's draft conclusions as concerns investment law while generally praising the work of the Special Rapporteur. Dr. Fabián Raimondo, Associate Professor of Public International Law at Maastricht University, presented a general picture of general principles of law in international criminal law with examples from criminal tribunals while making reference to the work of the Special Rapporteur on the topic.
The presentations were followed by questions and answers from the participants and the moderator. In the end, Dr. Kamalinne Pinitpuvadol, the Secretary-General of AALCO, thanked the distinguished panellists and participants for making the webinar a success.