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Article 53: Treaties Conflicting With A Peremptory Norm Of General International Law (Juscogens)

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Chapter Summary

The first sentence of Article 53 sets out the rule, namely, that peremptory norms allow for no contradiction by treaties, while the second sentence defines a peremptory norm of general international law for the purposes of the Convention. The peremptory norm can be modified only by a subsequent norm of general international law having the same character. There is a conflict, if the treaty, which is being concluded, cannot be performed in the future without breaching jus cogens. Impeachment of the treaty can be set in motion by any party to the treaty invoking the ground of invalidity in Article 53. It does not pronounce itself on the consequences of other norms, principles and situations conflicting with jus cogens. Given the cardinal importance of jus cogens for the international legal order, Article 53 amounts to one of the most important articles of the Convention.

Keywords: Article 53; international law; jus cogens; peremptory norm; treaties



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