Research Handbooks in International Law series
Edited by Catherine Brölmann and Yannick Radi
Chapter 5: Lawmaking by treaty: Negotiation of agreements and adoption of treaty texts
In the process of international treaty-making, the reaching of an international agreement is usually preceded by extensive negotiations between the prospective parties. Although many aspects of the process of international negotiations are not regulated by international law, certain (emerging) principles are nonetheless discernable that are both procedural and substantive in nature. Specific attention is given to negotiations at diplomatic conferences, with a focus not only on rules of procedure but also on the political and actual practice, as well as developments such as the involvement of non-state actors. When negotiations are concluded, the seemingly uncomplicated step of adopting the treaty text presents its own issues. In practice, the adoption of each text is a unique event with its own rules and developments, especially in connection with the question of consensus and majority voting. With the will of the States in international lawmaking and international negotiations usually holding center stage, this means that their own aims and objectives take priority, often at the expense of rules and conventional procedures.
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