Reinforce multilateralism and enhance global governance capabilities

The Rule of Law

Strengthening the rule of law at the national and international level is a core objective of the UN Charter. However, with some limited exceptions, the international legal system has not yet matured into a true rule of law system. Potential reforms to achieve this goal include reforming the peaceful settlement of disputes, the International Court of Justice, and the International Criminal Court and establishing an international judicial training institute and an Office of International Attorney General.
Strengthening the rule of law at the national and international level is a core objective of the UN Charter. However, with some limited exceptions, the international legal system has not yet matured into a true rule of law system. Potential reforms to achieve this goal include reforming the peaceful settlement of disputes, the International Court of Justice, and the International Criminal Court and establishing an international judicial training institute and an Office of International Attorney General.

Only about 40% of UN Member states have made a declaration to accept the compulsory jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice (ICJ), including only one permanent member of the UN Security Council. Yet, under the UN Charter, the ICJ is the “principal judicial organ” of the United Nations—it is sometimes referred to by the general public as the “World Court.” The international community should focus expert attention on taking the next steps in the court’s evolution.

The ICJ should be an enhanced institution, more fitted to 21st century conditions and demands, and over time become a mandatory, universal court, such that all UN Members are subject to its compulsory jurisdiction, as argued by various states at the original Charter negotiations.

 

The Rule of Law Visionaries

Bertha von Suttner
Indefatigable Promoter of Peace

Baroness Bertha von Suttner (1843 to 1914) was an Austrian pacifist and writer. In 1905, in recognition of her lifelong opposition to war she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, the second female Nobel laureate, after Marie Curie.

Other Organizations to Look at

This book’s trenchant analysis of what ails the running of the globe should be read by policymakers everywhere, and certainly by those many citizens who concern themselves with fostering a better and more functional world. Change comes slowly, but this book is a prodding catalyst.

Robert I. Rotberg, Harvard Kennedy School, author of On Governance

Other Areas of Interest

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