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1. The Progressive Development of International Law: History, Theory and Practice

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Chapter Summary

The mission of the International Law Commission (ILC), described in Article 1(1) of its Statute, is prima facie simple, calling for 'the promotion of the progressive development of international law and its codification'. This chapter first considers the concept of codification before 1947. It next addresses the period 1947 to 1949, and the incorporation of progressive development and codification into the Charter and the ILC Statute. The chapter then examines the modern process of progressive development within the ILC, and its reception by states as relevant consumers of the Commission's work. In 1924, the League Assembly suggested that the Council convene a Committee of Experts to identify those areas of international law with respect to which codification was 'most desirable and realizable' and, after receiving the comments of states, to report back to the Council on those areas 'sufficiently ripe' for development.

Keywords: codification; International Law Commission (ILC); progressive development



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