Research Handbooks in International Law series
Edited by Ben Saul
Chapter 9: The draft United Nations Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism
This chapter analyses the core negotiating issues surrounding the diplomatic efforts to conclude a Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism (CCIT), under the auspices of the United Nations Ad Hoc Committee on Measures to Eliminate International Terrorism (AHC). It first considers the historical background of international initiatives to combat terrorism, including the development of the international counterterrorism treaty framework within the UN. The chapter then turns to current initiatives in the UN to provide a comprehensive treaty framework for combating terrorism, including the controversy over the so-called ‘definitional issue’ which previously led the UN to adopt a ‘sectoral approach’. Next, it addresses the rationale for the CCIT and how the Draft CCIT seeks to address gaps in the existing sectoral treaty framework. It then examines the way in which the CCIT seeks to deal with the ‘definitional issue’ through a ‘compromise package’, which addresses the different political and legal considerations involved, and the rationale for and elements of the package. The final section proposes a way ahead to overcome the current impasse.
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