Mancini, Rolin-Jaequemyns, Moynier
 
Institut de droit international  
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H I S T O R Y

 

Origins

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The Institute of International Law was founded on 8 September 1873 at the Ghent Town Hall in Belgium. Eleven international lawyers of renown had decided to join together to create an institution independent of any governmental influence which would be able both to contribute to the development of international law and act so that it might be implemented.

Behind the Ghent meeting one can discern in particular, the combined efforts of Gustave Rolin-Jaequemyns and Gustave Moynier. The latter had in 1863 been one of the five founding members of the International Committee of the Red Cross. Like many others, he had been appalled to observe that the Convention for the Amelioration of the Condition of the Wounded in Armies in the Field (1864) had met with such little compliance during the Franco-Prussian War of 1870-71. There was a need to react and it is in this spirit that the founders established a private association whose scientific credentials, the quality of its works and its independence were to enable the "progress of International Law", in accordance with the terms of the Statutes (Article One).

In principle, the Institute meets every two years. Between Sessions, Scientific Commissions study themes chosen by the plenary Assembly. The latter receives the work of the Commissions, examines them attentively and if appropriate adopts Resolutions of a normative character.

These Resolutions are then brought to the attention of governmental authorities, international organizations as well as the scientific community. In this way, the Institute seeks to highlight the characteristics of the lex lata in order to promote its respect. Sometimes it make determinations de lege ferenda in order to contribute to the development of international law.

In 1904 the Institute of International Law was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in recognition of its action in favour of arbitration among States, a peaceful means of settling disputes.

The three people whose portraits appear on this site are Pascal Mancini, the Institute's first President, Gustave Rolin-Jaequemyns, the first Secretary-General, and Gustave Moynier, who was instrumental in the creation of the Institute.

 

In Memoriam

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Founders of the Institute of International Law, who met from 8 to 11 September 1873, in the "Salle de l'Arsenal" of the Ghent Town Hall:

Pascal Mancini (from Rome), President
Emile de Laveleye (from Liege)
Tobie Michel Charles Asser (from Amsterdam)
James Lorimer (from Edinburgh)
Wladimir Besobrassof (from Saint-Petersburg)
Gustave Moynier (from Geneva)
Jean Gaspar Bluntschli (from Heidelberg)
Augusto Pierantoni (from Naples)
Charles Calvo (from Buenos Aires)
Gustave Rolin-Jaequemyns (from Ghent)
David Dudley Field (from New York)

 

The Sessions of the Institute of International Law

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The Presidents of each Session are mentioned in parentheses. Each President of the Institute presides over one Session, with the exception of the following seven Presidents: Henri Harburger (1914-1916), the Marquis d'Alhucemas (1932-1934, 1934-1936), Nicolas Politis (1937-1942), Jean Spiropoulos (1965-1967), Edouard Hambro (1975-1977), Constantin Eustathiadès (1977-1979), Erik Castrén (1983-1985), René-Jean Dupuy (1995-1997).

Among the titles delivered by the Institute, there is also that of Honorary President. Those who have been elected Honorary Presidents are: Gustave Rolin-Jaequemyns (1892), Gustave Moynier (1894), John Westlake (1911), Albéric Rolin (1923) and Charles De Visscher (1954).

1. Geneva 1874 (P. S. Mancini)
2. The Hague1875 (J. C. Bluntschli)
3. Zurich 1877 (F. de Parieu)
4. Paris 1878 (F. de Parieu)
5. Brussels 1879 (G. Rolin-Jaequemyns)
6. Oxford 1880 (M. Bernard)
7. Turin 1882 (A. Pierantoni)
8. Munich 1883 (J. de Holtzendorff)
9. Brussels 1885 (G. Rolin-Jaequemyns)
10. Heidelberg 1887 (A. de Bulmerincq)
11. Lausanne 1888 (A. Rivier)
12. Hamburg 1891 (L. de Bar)
13. Geneva 1892 (G. Moynier)
14. Paris 1894 (L. Renault)
15. Cambridge 1895 (J. Westlake)
16. Venice 1896 (E. Brusa)
17. Copenhagen 1897 (Ch. Goos)
18. The Hague 1898 (T. M. C. Asser)
19. Neuchâtel 1900 (Ch. Lardy)
20. Brussels 1902 (Ed. Descamps)
21. Edinburg 1904 (Lord Reay)
22. Ghent 1906 (A. Rolin)
23. Florence 1908 (C. F. Gabba)
24. Paris 1910 (Ch. Lyon-Caen)
25. Madrid 1911 (Ed. Clunet)
26. Christiania 1912 (G.-F. Hagerup)
27. Oxford 1913 (T.E. Holland)
28. Paris 1919 (Sir Thomas Barclay)
29. Rome 1921 (A. Corsi)
30. Grenoble 1922 (A. Weiss)
31. Brussels 1923 (Ed. Rolin-Jaequemyns)
32. Vienna 1924 (L. Strisower)
33. The Hague 1925 (B.J.C. Loder)
34. Lausanne 1927 (J. Brown Scott)
35. Stockholm 1928 (K.H. Hammarskjöld)
36. New York 1929 (J. Brown Scott)
37. Cambridge 1931 (A.P. Higgins)
38. Oslo 1932 (F. Beichmann)
39. Paris 1934 (Ch. Lyon-Caen)
40. Brussels 1936 (Ed. Rolin-Jaequemyns)
41. Luxembourg 1937 (Sir Cecil Hurst)
42. Lausanne 1947 (B. Nolde)
43. Brussels 1948 (Ch. De Visscher)
44. Bath 1950 (Sir Arnold McNair)
45. Sienna 1952 (T. Perassi)
46. Aix-en-Provence 1954 (A. de La Pradelle)
47. Grenade 1956 (J. de Yanguas Messia)
48. Amsterdam 1957 (J. P. A. François)
49. Neuchâtel 1959 (G. Sauser-Hall)
50. Salzburg 1961 (A. von Verdross)
51. Brussels 1963 (H. Rolin)
52. Warsaw 1965 (B. Winiarski)
53. Nice 1967 (H. Valladao)
54. Edinburg 1969 (Sir Gerald Fitzmaurice)
55. Zagreb 1971 (J. Andrassy)
56. Rome 1973 (G. Morelli)
57. Wiesbaden 1975 (W. Wengler)
58. Oslo 1977 (M.K. Yasseen)
59. Athens 1979 (A. Gros)
60. Dijon 1981 (Ch. Rousseau)
61. Cambridge 1983 (Sir Robert Jennings)
62. Helsinki 1985 (P. Reuter)
63. Cairo 1987 (B. Boutros-Ghali)
64. Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle 1989 (J.M. Castro-Rial y Canosa)
65. Basel 1991 (P. Lalive)
66. Milan 1993 (R. Ago)
67. Lisbon 1995 (A. Ferrer Correia)
68. Strasbourg 1997 (K. Skubiszewski)
69. Berlin 1999 (E. Jayme)
70. Vancouver 2001 (E. McWhinney)
71. Bruges 2003 (G. Van Hecke)
72. Krakow 2005 (P. Makarczyk)
73. Santiago 2007 (F. Orrego Vicuña)
74. Naples 2009 (B. Conforti)
75. Rhodes
(2011) (E. Roucounas)
76. Tokyo (2013) (H. Owada)

The 77th Session will be held in Tallinn in August/September 2015, presided by Mr Rein Müllerson.

 

The official headquarters of the Institute

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In accordance with article 11 of the Statutes , the official headquarter of the Institute was from 1873 to 1878 in Ghent (S.G. Gustave Rolin-Jaequemyns) ; from 1878 to 1892, in Brussels (S.G. Alphonse Rivier then from 1887 Gustave Rolin-Jaequemyns) ; from 1892 to 1900, in Lausanne (S.G. Ernest Lehr) ; from 1900 to 1906, in Louvain (S.G. Edouard Descamps) ; from 1906 to 1913, in Ghent, from 1913 to 1919, in the Hague, from 1919 to 1923, in Brussels (S.G. Albéric Rolin, 1906-1923) ; from 1923 to 1927, in Louvain (S.G. Alfred Nerincx) ; from 1927 until 1931, in Ghent, from 1931 to 1950, in Brussels (S.G. Charles De Visscher, 1927-1937 ; Fernand De Visscher, 1937-1950) ; from 1950 to 1963, in Geneva (S.G. Hans Wehberg, 1950-1962 ; interim S.G. Paul Guggenheim, 1962-1963) ; from 1963 to 1969, in Paris (S.G. Suzanne Bastid) ; from 1969 to 1981, in Brussels (S.G. Paul De Visscher) ; since 1981, in Geneva (S.G. Nicolas Valticos, 1981-1991; S.G. Christian Dominicé, 1981-2003). From September 2003, this headquarter is located at Grez-Doiceau (Belgium) (S.G. Joe Verhoeven).


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Last modified: February 2, 2006