UN Charter Significance

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1.0 INTRODUCTION The Charter of the United Nations is the foundational treaty of the newly created intergovernmental organization that emerged from World War II. This international treaty sets out basic principles of international relations. The UN Charter is a relatively short treaty of less than 9,000 words. To some extent, the secret of the UN Charter’s survival has depended on its concise character. Again, the “constitutionalization” of international law is one of the most intensely debated issues in contemporary international legal doctrine. There indeed exists a constitutional law of the international community that is built on and around the Charter of the United Nations. This Charter has a constitutional quality which addresses global…show more content…
It is contractual with regard to its provisions on signing, amendments, ratification and entry into force. It is normative with regard to its provisions on aims and principles. It is constitutive with regard to its provisions on membership and the organization of the United Nations with its six principal organs, establishing the composition, functions and powers, and their voting procedures. The features by which the charter is distinguished from ordinary public international law are its special legal nature, its sources and its increasingly wide circle of actors. Its special nature arises from the fundamental significance of the objectives of the United Nations, reflected in the powers of the Security Council and the special priority position which the obligations under the Charter have in relation to obligations arising from other treaties. As regards the sources: UN law was developed, in particular, on the basis of two categories: (i) through ‘soft law’, notably normative, often groundbreaking resolutions of the General Assembly in the field of human rights, self-determination, peace and security, development and the environment; and (ii) hard law, including peremptory norms (ius cogens). The latter includes the prohibition of aggression, genocide, slavery and slave trade, racial discrimination and apartheid, torture and the right to self-determination, to mention the most compelling

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